Cleveland Golf has made a significant breakthrough in driver design technology by engineering the lightest driver in golf.
The Launcher Ultralite XL270 is named after its incredibly lightweight 270 gram total club weight - some 30-70 grams lighter than a traditional driver - and is designed to give the golfer effortless distance without sacrificing playability.
The XL270 is one of three new Launcher Ultralite drivers, each with a different total club weight, which together offer every type of golfer a unique combination of feel, workability and head speed for their differing swing type.
The second driver in the Cleveland Golf Launcher Ultralite Series is the SL290, a 460cc driver with a slightly heavier 290 gram total weight aimed at the player who makes a more aggressive downswing. Completing the line-up is the TL310 with a 310 gram total weight and smaller 440cc head size designed for the Tour standard player seeking the ultimate in shot-making versatility.
The Launcher Ultralite XL270 is also available in a Draw version with heel biased weighting and a slightly closed face for slice reduction.
“From our extensive research we proved that there are benefits of weight reduction for all player types,” explains Nate Radcliffe, Business Unit leader for Metal Woods. “At the same time our studies revealed that we shouldn’t all be playing the same weight driver, we all have different swing types and performance goals. That led to us engineering three Launcher Ultralite drivers, each with a different total weight to cater for every player.”
To help golfers select the right driver to best suit their swing type and game Cleveland Golf has introduced a unique Right Weight Fitting System. Designed to match a golfer to the right driver no matter what their swing type, size, strength or ability, the Right Weight Fitting System makes driver selection easy and ensures golfers get the best driver for their game.
“While total weight has been the focus of fitting in most sports (bowling, cycling, baseball etc.), it has been neglected in golf until now,” adds Radcliffe. “As golfers test the new Launcher Ultralite series via the Right Weight fitting system, we feel that they will realise for the first time how critical total weight can be to performance.”
Right Way Engineering…
In order to build the lightest driver in golf Cleveland Golf engineers faced the challenge of reducing the total weight of the driver while preserving swingweight and flex – the keys to increasing clubhead speed and distance without losing feel or playability.
Cleveland Golf resolved this dilemma by developing a unique Right Way(TM) system that ensures that while light, the Launcher Ultralite drivers still fall within traditional swingweight ranges so that they offer the golfer a consistent feel, helping the player maintain tempo and stability.
“The lighter the driver the higher the clubhead speed,” explains Radcliffe. “Our engineers discovered that an increase of just three miles an hour in a player’s swing speed could translate to 7-10 yards of distance, achievable through a 30 gram total club weight reduction. In our era of restricted equipment gains that represents a significant achievement.”
To achieve a lighter total club weight Cleveland Golf collaborated with Miyazaki, the renowned Japanese premium shaft manufacturer, and grip manufacturers Lamkin and Winn to remove weight from both the shaft and grip of the club.
The Launcher Ultralite XL270 is powered by the Miyazaki C. Kua 39 series, the lightest shaft ever played on the PGA Tour. This shaft is engineered with a specific bending and torsional profile that ensures that while clubhead speed increases the clubhead stays stable throughout the swing and returns to the ball on a consistent orientation without twisting; helping the golfer hit longer, straighter shots.
Add to that a Winnlite grip, plus weight savings inside the clubhead giving the club more power and energy through the ball, and it was possible to engineer the lightest driver in golf.
The Launcher Ultralite Series drivers will begin shipping on January 1, 2011 with an RRP of £239.