The new Callaway Steelhead XR irons and hybrids have been revealed, improving upon the popular X-14 series from the early 2000s with updated Face Cup technology
Designed for game improvers craving extra distance and forgiveness, the Callaway Steelhead XR irons and hybrids are a throwback to one of its most popular clubs from years gone by.
The new line pays homage to the Steelhead X-14 irons, which are among Callaway’s most successful irons of all time. Engineers have recaptured that blend of providing good distance and feel in the new version, but have taken it a notch through Callaway’s modern Face Cup technology.
Callaway has kept the best heritage elements from original X Series irons, like how the X-14 irons merged a longer blade length and wider sole width with a hollowed out hosel to allow the horizontal centre of gravity (CG) from heel-to-toe to sit directly in the centre of the scorelines. This promotes good feel, distance and forgiveness across the face.
Callaway’s 360 Face Cup ensures you still get modern-day distance, with the edges of the ultra-thin faces made even thinner to minimise ball speed loss on heel and toe strikes. An innovative Hollow Bore-Thru hosel design has also allowed weight to be repositioned where it can further increase forgiveness and stability, while a steel bar infused with urethane behind the face dampens vibration and lowers the CG to improve feel and launch.
Like Callaway’s better player irons, for example the Callaway Apex, the CG height changes through the set to achieve the best ball flight for each club. The CG is lower in the long irons to increase launch and gradually becomes higher towards the shorter irons to increase spin but launch the ball lower, helping golfers hit more attacking wedge shots.
Joining the irons, the Steelhead XR hybrid combines improved perimeter weighting with a low CG to make it easy to hit high and long from different lies. Compared to Callaway’s XR hybrid, the Steelhead XR is longer from heel-to-toe and deeper from front-to-back, with a deeper CG. When all added together, this makes the Steelhead XR a more forgiving prospect.
Also included on the Steelhead XR hybrid is the Speed Step crown, which first featured on the Callaway XR16 driver, which reduces aerodynamic drag over the clubhead during the downswing to help maximise clubhead speed.
Available now, the irons come with Dynamic Gold True Temper XP 95 Stepless steel (£649, 7-piece set) or Matrix F15 graphite (£829, 7-piece set) shafts as standard, while the hybrid comes in 3H (19°) to 6H (28°) in a Matrix F15 graphite shaft with an RRP of £199.
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Joel has worked in the golf industry for over 12 years covering both instruction and more recently equipment. He now oversees all product content here at Golf Monthly, managing a team of talented and passionate writers and presenters in delivering the most thorough and accurate reviews, buying advice, comparisons and deals to help the reader find exactly what they are looking for. So whether it's the latest driver, irons, putter or laser rangefinder, Joel has his finger on the pulse keeping up to date with the latest releases in golf. He is also responsible for all content on irons and golf tech, including distance measuring devices and launch monitors.
One of his career highlights came when covering the 2012 Masters he got to play the sacred Augusta National course on the Monday after the tournament concluded, shooting a respectable 86 with just one par and four birdies. To date, his best ever round of golf is a 5-under 67 back in 2011. He currently plays his golf at Burghley Park Golf Club in Stamford, Lincs, with a handicap index of 3.2.
Joel's current What's In The Bag?
Driver: Titleist TSR3, 9°
Fairway wood: Titleist TSR3, 15°
Hybrid: Titleist TSi2, 18°
Irons: Ping i230 4-UW
Putter: Evnroll ER2V
Ball: 2023 Titleist Pro V1x
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