TaylorMade Unveils New AeroBurner and R15 Lines of Woods

TaylorMade mixes old and new with the AeroBurner and R15 lines of metalwoods.

BD TitleTaylorMade got away from their core audience last year, and new CEO Ben Sharpe knows it.

The SLDR was released with less fanfare than they expected, and it took TM too long to realize that the “Loft Up” features of the club were more important than the moving weights. They tried to rescue that later in 2014 with the SLDR-S, but that line’s overlap with the underwhelming JetSpeed just gave TaylorMade a muddled lineup.

The familiar “R” and Burner lines were no where to be found, and the RocketBallz line with which TM had so much commercial success was similarly jettisoned. The entire lineup was blue and grey, and they never quite decided whether they wanted the club crowns to be white, black, or somewhere in between.

TaylorMade’s new lineup brings back some of the old standbys, while incorporating the technology that got lost last year.

TaylorMade AeroBurner Driver Hero

You can tell right away from TaylorMade’s marketing material that they’re not messing around.

“For the golfers who missed the phenomenon that was RocketBallz, or for those who are ready to upgrade to more speed and distance in their metalwoods, AeroBurner is what you are looking for,” says Brian Bazzel, TM’s Senior Director of Product Creation for Metalwoods. “We’ve drastically improved the performance of the sole’s Speed Pocket and significantly improved the aerodynamics to deliver maximum speed to the golfer.”

You have to think getting “RocketBallz” in the first sentence was key. The AeroBurner takes the white crown and the Speed Pocket from the RocketBallz lines, and builds on that technology.

TM is introducing what they call the “Aero hosel,” a fin located on the heel of the club that is designed to reduce drag. It’s touches like that, a redesigned crown, and an extremely light 50-gram Matrix Speed Rul-Z shaft that harken back to the Burner SuperFast, TM’s most recent Burner model.

Interestingly, the AeroBurner does not have an adjustable hosel. TM says this is allowed them to extend the Speed Pocket closer to the heel, but it’s surely a disappointment. Even the TP option, which TM offers for the AeroBurner drivers, fairway woods, and hybrids, does not come with an adjustable option. One of the things that made the RocketBallz line so successful was that even lower handicappers played them, but that might not be the case with the AeroBurner.

TaylorMade AeroBurner Fairway Crown

The RocketBallz redefined what we expected a fairway wood could do, and TaylorMade isn’t content to stop there.

“The original RocketBallz represented a breakthrough in performance which started a whole new replacement cycle for fairway woods, says Brian Bazzel. “We have continued to pour R&D resources into better understanding the potential of flexible sole boundary conditions which has led us to AeroBurner, a fairway with our largest Speed Pocket ever. We are now achieving driver like launch conditions with a fairway wood.”

Similar to the SLDR series, they’ve pushed the center of gravity lower and farther forward, giving the AeroBurner a high launch and lower spin.

The AeroBurner driver (with lofts of 9.5˚, 10.5˚, 12.5˚, and HL) is priced at $299, the fairway woods are $229, and the hybrids come in at $299. TP models are available at a $70 premium.

TaylorMade R15 Driver Hero

Make no mistake about it – the R15 is an improved SLDR with different paint. That’s not a bad thing – the SLDR was a great driver – but they’re not really bringing back the movable weight plugs or sole plate that came to define the R-series.

Instead, the R15 carries over the sliding weights – two of them this time – and adds an improved adjustable hosel. Where the AeroBurner offers a one-size-fits-all option, the R15 is built for adjustability.

TaylorMade R15 Driver Toe

Also carried over from the SLDR line is the low and forward center of gravity, which TaylorMade says decreases spin even further.

TaylorMade has provided a wealth of options for the R15. It comes in 460cc and 430cc variations, the latter of which is also available in black. The 430cc version is the lower-spinning model, built for Tour players and lower handicappers.

The R15 fairway woods have a similar Front Track weight system (albeit one that uses just one weight), which TM notes also doubles as a Speed Pocket.

The R15 hybrid has been redesigned with a new “peanut” shape that TM says is preferred by their Tour professionals. The hybrid has no adjustable weights, but, like the fairway woods and drivers, it does have a hosel sleeve. It does have a Speed Pocket for maximum forgiveness on shots struck low on the face.

TaylorMade R15 Hybrid Crown

The 460cc R15 driver comes in 9.5˚, 10.5˚, 12˚, and 14˚ lofts, while the 430cc version drops the 14˚. Both will be priced at $429. The fairway woods come in at $279, while the hybrids will be $219.

1 thought on “TaylorMade Unveils New AeroBurner and R15 Lines of Woods”

  1. The white crown is back! I think having a white crown and a black face does make it easier to align, but why then does the R15 with the black crown have a black face rather than a silver one like the SLDR?

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