Product: Titleist AVX golf balls
Specs: Three-piece ball with urethane cover
Available: April 24
The new AVX ball is designed to deliver distance and greenside control with less spin and a lower flight off the tee or with long irons than players expect with a Pro V1 and Pro V1x.
After test marketing the three-piece AVX ball in Florida, Arizona and California since October 2017, Titleist announced the ball now will be available throughout the United States.
“The technologies within the AVX are things that we have been playing around with for a while,” said Michael Mahoney, Titleist’s vice president of golf ball marketing. “In 2017, when we launched the new Pro V1, probably the most significant thing about it was the distance improvement that made it a parity of the Pro V1x but still feel like a Pro V1. We did that through core technologies that allowed us to maintain the compression, increase speed and decrease spin. That led to more internal discussions about low-compression balls and their performance.”
Wally Uihlein, Titleist’s former president and CEO, was fond of saying that soft is the enemy of performance, because typically a lowered compression results in decreases in spin and speed. However, Mahoney said, Titleist decided it could use some things developed for the 2017 Pro V1 to create a low-compression, multi-layer performance ball that would have a urethane cover for greenside spin.
That ball is the AVX, a three-piece ball designed with a large rubber core, a casing layer and a cast urethane cover. It has a lower compression of about 80 than either the Pro V1 (around 90 compression) or the Pro V1x (about 100 compression). For that reason, the AVX should provide a softer feel at impact than either the three-piece Pro V1 or the four-piece Pro V1x.
The casing layer, which is the thin red area that encases the orange-colored core, was designed to reduce spin that might otherwise decrease performance with woods or long irons.
While the side stamp on the AVX ball is nearly identical to the Pro V1’s, as can be seen in the photo above, the dimples look a little different. Instead of been gently curved like a downward-facing contact lens, they are catenary, which means the sides are more vertical.
“The urethane in the cover is made from a different chemistry than the Pro V1 and the Pro V1x,” Mahoney said. “It delivers the performance characteristics we are looking for, but it is different than the Pro V1 and Pro V1x, but it also is a chemistry that allows us to deliver the ball in yellow.”
In either white or yellow, many players will benefit from the soft urethane cover’s control and spin. But Mahoney said that because the AVX is slightly lower in compression and softer, it will spin a little less than the Pro V1 and Pro V1x on chips and pitch shots.