What’s new? How much does it cost? And how does it perform? Jack Backhouse brings you the low down on the Cobra Darkspeed LS Driver
Cobra made a huge leap forward last year with the AeroJet driver, so can they build on their success and produce another top-tier driver? Find out in our Cobra DarkSpeed LS driver review.
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Cobra are trending in the right direction. The Cobra DarkSpeed LS driver is another jump forward in performance at what is a great value price compared to other major brands’ drivers.
Cobra have refined their head shape so that the DarkSpeed LS is their most aero-dynamic shape to date, whilst giving high-speed players the look and versatility to hit whatever shot the course demands of them.
- Love the compact shape
- Quick ball speeds
- Low price
- The Cobra stock grip still remains too thick
Cobra DarkSpeed LS Driver Review: First Impressions
When something comes in all-black, we are conditioned to believe it is somehow better than the same product that isn’t all-black. Think about Range Rovers. Lovely cars, but when you see one in all black, it somehow feels cooler and more valuable. This is how I feel about the new Cobra DarkSpeed LS. The headcover is all black, the head is all black, it looks stealthy, it looks fast, I want to hit it hard.
The Cobra AeroJet LS driver was my driver of choice for the 2023 season. I love the shape, the feel of the face, and the swing weighting. I played some of my best rounds of 2023 with that driver, so I was very excited to see what Cobra were going to come out with in 2024.
There has been a significant amount of change in the tech of Cobra’s low-spin driver that goes beyond its dashing good looks. Cobra have put a new 3-port interchangeable weight system on the sole of the club to allow players to dial in their launch conditions and ball flight. I opted to keep the heaviest weight on the back for more backspin, but you could move it forward to reduce spin and help take either the left or right side of the course out of play.
Like most drivers on the market in 2024, the Cobra head has carbon in the sole and the crown, with the crown plate 30% lighter than the AeroJet, which allows more mass to be moved lower and forwards on the sole. I found that this driver felt the most forgiving of all the low-spin drivers I have tested for 2024; yes, it is fast, but it hasn’t compromised accuracy and getting shots in play.
I used this driver out on the course before I tested it on a launch monitor (after changing the grip) and was very pleased with the results. It felt really fast to swing with the new aerodynamic head shape and gave me good results on mishit shots. I have been able to hit draws and fades with this driver, as well as high and low shots, with more workability success than I’ve seen or had the confidence to try with other low-spin drivers.
The data I achieved when testing at the Worksop Indoor Golf Centre do not feature crazy numbers, but they are very similar, if not slightly better, than drivers that cost £100+ more. The ball speeds are good, 263 average carries for 283 yards total distance is pretty good for me, and the mishit performance isn’t bad either. I like that the ball would spin more on bad shots, keeping the shot straighter, rather than low spinning shots dipping out the air and running into trouble.
The new DarkSpeed LS driver has a 13% Larger Pwrshell face insert and has the AI-designed Hot face, which is what makes the sweet spot and playable areas of the club face better than the AeroJet driver.
Another nice touch from Cobra is their MyFly 8 adjustable loft system and SmartPad technology, which allows you to move the face up or down a degree without adjusting the face angle. Typically, adding loft closes the face, and delofting opens the face (which is a flaw, in my opinion), but now being able to make these adjustments and keep the face square is a huge win for golfers and custom fitters.
To summarize, the Cobra DarkSpeed LS driver is right up there fighting for the top spot against the other premium brands’ low-spin drivers and can be a disrupter in 2024 if Cobra can get it into golfers’ hands. It performs well, looks the part, and might just end up in my bag for 2024.
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Cobra DarkSpeed LS Driver Review: The Details
Lofts: 8°, 9°, 10.5°
Shafts: UST Mamiya LIN-Q M40X White XS and S
Project X Hzrdus Limited Edition Matte Black Gen 4 S
UST Mamiya LIN-Q M40X Blue R and S
More information: Cobra Website