TaylorMade SLDR S woods

TaylorMade's SLDR S driver, fairway wood and hybrid.

CARLSBAD, Calif. – TaylorMade has a new version of its SLDR woods on the way to market, these called the SLDR S.

What could the S possibly stand for? How about Simple, because the SLDR S driver comes without the adjustable hosel of the original SLDR? The S model driver will have an adjustable sliding weight bar on the sole to help manipulate ball flight.

How about S for silver? Aha, that’s it. The new SLDR S has a new look – a silver matte crown paired with black accents.

To celebrate the launch of SLDR S metalwoods, TaylorMade will “Silver Out” many of its staff professionals at The Players Championship and HP Byron Nelson Championship. The company that expanded golf’s color frontier from black clubheads to white clubheads will now explore silver. TaylorMade staffers will wear silver Adidas Golf apparel, carry silver staff bags and play Tour-only satin silver SLDR drivers with adjustable features.

Here’s what consumers will find in SLDR S metalwoods:

  • Drivers (titanium): 460cc in head volume; loft choices are 10, 12, 14 and 16 degrees; stock shaft is the Fujikura Motore Speeder 57.
  • Fairway woods (stainless steel): Lofts are 15, 17, 19, 21 and 23 degrees (translating to 3, 3HL, 5, 5HL and 7); equipped with Fujikura’s Motore Speeder 65 shaft.
  • Rescue hybrids (stainless steel): Lofts are 19, 22, 25 and 28 degrees (3, 4, 5 and 6); stock shaft is the Fujikura Motore Speeder 72.

All the SLDR S metalwoods will be available May 16 at retail. The driver will cost $329, fairway woods $229, Rescue hybrids $179.

The high driver lofts reflect TaylorMade’s campaign to convince amateurs to use more loft in their SLDR drivers. That’s because the center of gravity has been moved low and forward in the clubhead, reducing spin and often requiring more loft to achieve optimal carry and overall distance.

• Read about TaylorMade's SLDR irons here.

Keith Sbarbaro, TaylorMade’s vice president of tour operations, was happy to talk about the “lofting up” phenomenon: “Historically on the PGA Tour, guys would de-loft their drivers in an attempt to achieve a lower ball flight and gain distance. But when we introduced low forward CG, players started to see huge distance leaps from added loft. This has been a monumental shift in the way of thinking and a breakthrough in unlocking more distance.”

SLDR S fairway woods and Rescue hybrids feature a larger footprint and a shallower face than SLDR. They are designed and shaped to be more playable for a wide variety of golfers.

There is a sharp contrast here in the marketing plan for TaylorMade’s two new lines of clubs that were announced May 5: SLDR S metalwoods and SLDR irons. TaylorMade touts SLDR irons as clubs that could appeal to touring pros and ordinary golfers. The SLDR S metalwoods are aimed at everyday amateurs, as TaylorMade’s touring pros are expected to stick with the highly adjustable SLDR metalwood line.

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