As they ride the momentum of staffer Louis Oosthuizen's win at the Open Championship, PING shows no signs of slowing down. Proof of that is their announcement of a a wide variety of upcoming clubs for a wide variety of players. This week, we'll check out their new K15 line, which includes a driver, a fairway wood, and a hybrid/iron set.
PING has always had a good offering for female golfers as well, with series such as the Rhapsody set. This year is no different as they pull the covers off of their new Faith series. So with all that said, let's quit wasting time and take a look!
K15 Drivers & Fairways
As the newest series in PING's SGI stable, the K15 drivers and fairways set out with a very defined agenda: get the shot back on line and in play. One big factor in achieving this is their Straight Flight Technology (or SF Tec, for short), which locates approximately 10% of the head's mass back and in to the heel, which promotes a square face at impact. The weight in the SF Tec pads comes from the weight savings achieved by utilizing a thinner crown. The end result is an optimal, low and deep CoG and higher MOI. Not only that, another big benefit of the low and deep CoG is a high launch and low spin.
The face of the 460cc K15 driver is also stretched out from heel to toe so that distance loss is a non-issue on off center contact. You'll have three lofts to choose from, starting with a 9.5°, as well as a 10.5° and a 12°. The standard length is 45.75", and it weighs in at 204 grams, with a swingweight of D3. The stock TFC149D graphite shaft comes in your normal flex choices, including L, Soft R, R, S, and X. The suggested retail price is $337.50, though you should end up paying somewhere closer to $300.
A number of the same qualities are shared between the drivers and the fairway woods, but there are some other key design concepts unique to these fairways that make them tick. For example, the K15 is crafted from 17-4 stainless steel, instead of the titanium composition of the drivers.
Like the drivers of the same name, the K15 fairway woods are available in three lofts; a 16° 3 wood, a 19° 5 wood, and a 22° 7 wood. The length overall length starts at 43" (3W) and steps down in half-inch increments down to 42" (7W). As they get shorter, the head size also slightly shrinks, as the 3W is 199cc, while the 5W is 192cc, and the 7W is 189cc. All three have a swingweight of D1. The stock TFC 149F graphite shaft has the same flex options as the driver counterpart. PING's suggested price is $222.50, but as usual, you can probably find it pretty easily for a little cheaper.
K15 Iron/Hybrid Set
The K15 iron/hybrid set starts right where it should - with a large face and head to give high handicappers a bit of room for error. By using a lightweight titanium face in a 17-4 stainless steel body, 27 grams were moved and down near the perimeter and sole of the head in order to increase the MOI. Much like the G15 line, internal weight pads were used to take the MOI even higher and produce consistent distances across the club face. The sole design serves two purposes - first to allow that weight distribution I mentioned a second ago, and also to promote consistent, quality turf interaction.
The entire set boasts higher overall launch angles, which allows lofts to be strengthened without losing control. Part of what creates that high launch angle (and low spin) is the offset hosel and face relationship.
As far as the hybrid/iron mix goes, you have a good bit of flexibility with optional 5H and 6H in place of a 5I and 6I as well as a 3H and 4H. Like the irons, the K15 hybrids are said to have an extreme MOI value thanks to a patent pending feature that creates lower spinning, higher launching shots, according to PING.
As for stock shafts for this set, while the hybrids only have the option of graphite, you have a couple of choices for the irons. They can be outfitted with the AWT steel shaft, which comes in Soft R, R, S, and X flex, or the PING TFC 149i graphite shaft, which comes in L, Soft R, R, and S flex. Price per club is going to depend on which of those shafts you choose, with the steel shafted models running at $136.25 per club and the graphite going for $155 per club.
Faith Series Drivers
Like the K15 line, the Faith Series encompasses all clubs, from driver down through wedges, though these were designed specifically for the ladies (and George Michael). The driving purpose behind the engineering in the Faith Series is to produce higher-launching, longer carrying shots for players with slower swing speeds. Much of the Faith Series shares styling and coloring with the K15 line, leading one to believe that the two lines may share a bit of the same design as the K15 Series.
That assumption would likely be correct, as the titanium Faith driver strives to do much of the same as the new K15 driver - use internal heel weighting to assist in squaring the face at impact, and straighter, longer drives. The 460cc Faith driver will be available in two lofts, 12 and 14. Both lofts measure up to be 44.5" long, with a head weight of 199 grams, and a C7 swingweight. Standard lie angle on both is an even 59.0°. The stock shaft is PING's ULT 200 Ladies graphite. MSRP is set at $280.
Faith Series Fairway Woods
The Faith fairway woods make the same progression as the K15 as well, offering a wide, shallow head, and deep center of gravity as a result of internal weight pads. Where they differ from the K15 is that the weighting and CoG isn't quite as low. The reason for keeping it a little higher was to generate more spin, and a higher launch for more carry distance. There will be four lofts available, in both LH and RH models, ranging from an 18° 3W up to a 30° 9W, and stepping up by 4° at each loft. The length and head size progressively decreases as the loft gets higher with the 3W measuring up to 42.5"/155cc and the 9W at 41"/137cc. PING's suggested price is $200 per club.
Faith Iron/Hybrid Set
Next up we have the iron/hybrid set. The hybrids have an appearance much like that of the G15 that I reviewed earlier this year. Instead of taking the shape of a smaller fairway wood, they have a narrower, more compact appearance almost like that of an iron, except for having a filled in cavity. In these particular hybrids, weighting has been emphasized in the toe area to increase forgiveness and improve accuracy. All of them have a new Custom Tuning Port design, which allowed discretionary weight to be shifted low and deep. The thick, wide sole helps you guide the club through the turf with ease.
The actual irons in this set start with a 32° 7 iron and are available in lofts up to a 54° sand wedge. The shaft used in the Faith Iron/Hybrid set is consistent with the other clubs in the Faith Series - the PING ULT 200 Ladies graphite. Expect to pay $112.50 per club.
Rounding out the Faith Series are three very familiar, proven putter designs - the classic Anser, as well as the max-forgiveness Craz-E and Wack-E. All three Faith putters contain a urethane face insert, which allows more weight to be redistributed along the perimeter of the head, and helps push MOI higher. All models are available for right-handed and left-handed players. You'll find the Anser to be the least expensive, as it's MSRP is set at $130, while the Craz-E and Wack-E are priced at $30 more.
Further complimenting the Faith series is a new lightweight bag that is available in three color combinations. This unique and versatile bag has a 14-way divider that ensures every one of the new clubs will have it's own place, and it look good carrying them.
Stay tuned as next week, we'll check out PING's other new gear, including their first new forged iron in 40 years. See ya then!