Honma game improvement clubs review: First Impressions
The new XP-1 range from Honma includes drivers, fairway woods, hybrids and irons for both men and women and adds to their T/World series of game improvement clubs.
The clubs are designed to be easy to square up through impact and have a draw-biased design. They aim to deliver greater distance and excellent forgiveness for golfers with higher handicaps.
Honma game improvement clubs review: The Technology
The range features ultra lightweight vizard shafts which are engineered to provide more swing speed, a high launch and responsive feel.
The driver features an innovative Double Slot Sole across the club head, with a narrow slot in the centre that’s designed to deliver more consistent distance and accuracy off the tee. The driver’s club face flexes along the entire slot for more speed and low spin, while the double slot flexes on heel and toe hits are designed to reduce side spin.
They feature Honma’s five fang technology. Three fang-like tabs in the crown and two in the sole provide a fast and efficient structure to increase face flex area.
A lightweight ET40 carbon crown ensures a low centre of gravity, and internal weighting is ribbed for added strength and face repulsion. A 15g weight pad provides optimal launch conditions.
The driver also features a primary 8-setting adjustment on Honma’s non-rotating hosel. The spine of the shaft stays fixed in the same position while the sleeve spins to the required setting. This is designed to deliver greater impact consistency.
The fairway woods also feature the Double Slot Sole on a carbon crown designed for high launch, long carry and a more consistent strike. A low and deep centre of gravity design incorporates a precision high strength steel body and thin fast face, with a heavy internal sole weighting. The hybrids carry the same design features, plus a thin, fast 455 steel face.
The XP-1 irons have a thin fast face design to provide distance and accuracy throughout the set. The hollow long irons feature a tungsten sole weight, while the short irons have a deep cavity. A high MOI is achieved with a low, deep centre of gravity providing higher launches and longer carries.
Honma game improvement clubs review: NCG Verdict
I tested the 7-iron and the driver in this game improvement range from Honma. Both these clubs initially looked slightly bulky when I unpackaged them however they sat really nicely behind the ball and had more of a players club design.
I started with the 7-iron and was averaging 154 yards, which is a six yard gain compared to my current irons. I found the sound and feel off the face was really enjoyable.
My best shot I struck really well and it flew 173 yards so it is worth considering there still will be some yardage difference between a really good strike and an average one, which could lead you to getting the occasional flyer. I think this, however, will be outweighed by the overall gain in consistency.
Initially, I was worried the driver shaft was going to be too light and my first two shots did go quite far left due to this, however after these two I adjusted to the weight of the shaft and started hitting the club really nicely.
I was hitting long high launching drives shot after shot, which had a very consistent shot shape. I was averaging over 220 yards carry with the driver – 246 yards total. The distance was very consistent with only 4 yards between the best and worst shot.
You could definitely see the centre of gravity was helping me launch the ball higher, which is key to consider if you need help flighting the ball.
I really enjoyed hitting this club and found I just wanted to keep hitting drive after drive. I would definitely recommend trying out this club.
Honma game improvement clubs review: Men’s Range
Driver: In the men’s XP-1 range, the driver comes in 9.5°, 10.5° and 12° and incorporates a vizard 43 shaft. RRP: £559.
Woods: Honma have opted for a 3, 5 and 7-wood which come in 15°, 18° and 21° respectively. They also incorporate the VIZARD 43 shaft. RRP: £309.
Hybrids: If you like to carry a hybrid or two in the bag, you have options available. Honma hybrids feature the same vizard 43 shaft that are in their drivers and fairway woods and come in 19°, 22° and 25°. RRP: £269.
Irons: Honma offer the 6-10 irons as standard with the choice to add either a 5 or 11 iron to comprise a six-club set. If you opt for the proprietary vizard shafts, six irons will come in at £1,179 whereas if you’d rather play Nippon shafts, they will set you back £969.
Honma game improvement clubs review: Women’s Range
Driver: Honma offer a 12° driver which has an RRP of £559.
Woods: Similarly to the men’s range, Honma have on sale the 3 (15°), 5 (18°) and 7-wood (21°). RRP: £309.
Hybrids: Again, if you are a fan of hybrids, then Honma have options available to you. In the women’s range these come in 22°, 25° and 28° and have an RRP of £269.
Irons: This time, the 7-11 irons come as standard with the consumer free to add a 6 or a SW to make up their set. RRP: £1,179.
The new range joins a club selection available from HONMA that includes the TW747 V, Vx and P irons; the TW-MB Rose Proto irons; the TW747 455 and 460 drivers and; the FW, UT and TW-W4 wedges.
More details on the new XP-1 range can be found on the Honma website.
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