Club: TaylorMade P790 irons
Price: $1,299 (3-PW) with True Temper Dynamic Gold 105 steel shafts and Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360 grips; $1,499 with UST Mamiya Recoil 760/780 ES SmacWrap graphite shafts
Specs: Hollow 8620 carbon-steel body with a forged 4140 carbon-steel face
In-store date: Sept. 15
The P790 is TaylorMade’s first foray into hollow-bodied irons designed for better players who want to increase ball speed and distance while keeping the look at address of a better-player’s club.
The new P790 blends a previously used TaylorMade technology with some new features to create the most technologically advanced better-player’s irons in the company’s history.
“In some ways, this is the Holy Grail of what we are trying to do,” said Tomo Bystedt, TaylorMade senior director of product creation for irons. “We’re continuing to forge ahead on game-improvement clubs, and have some great technologies come out in new clubs and great clubs for tour players, but this is a totally different animal from anything that we’ve made or anyone else has made.”
From a size perspective, the P790 irons have the longest blade length of any P Series TaylorMade iron, and they are designed to be the most powerful as well as the most forgiving. The 8620 carbon steel body is hollow, and the face of each P790 is forged from a strong 4140 carbon steel.
Instead of leaving the inner chamber empty, TaylorMade designers filled it with a lightweight material the company calls SpeedFoam. It is low-density and softens feel at impact while improving sound. It also allows the extremely thin face (1.75mm) to flex at impact to generate more ball speed. It works especially well on strikes low on the face, because the face plate wraps under the leading edge and into the sole, where a Speed Pocket is positioned.
“It’s a cut-through slot. Where the face end, the Speed Pocket begins,” Bystedt said. “The body material on the other side of the Speed Pocket is where the body starts. It’s an open gap into the head that we fill with the same polymer material that we’ve used in the past.”
To enhance stability and increase the moment of inertia, TaylorMade added a cylinder-shaped tungsten piece inside the heads of the 3-7 irons. Each piece is slightly different in size and shape, and they are all designed to pull the ideal hitting area into the middle of the face.
“It’s a lot easier to achieve that when you can put the tungsten wherever you want (because the club is hollow),” Bystedt said. “If you put it in the sole, you can end up in a tricky spot sometimes because it might go where the sole number is located. It was nice to be able to position the tungsten right where we needed to.”
While some golfers think a P790 3-iron could be an ideal hybrid alternative, TaylorMade will not sell these irons as individual clubs when they are first released. Eight-club sets run 3-PW, and a gap wedge is also available.