Mizuno MP-18 Irons Revealed - The long-awaited Mizuno MP-18 iron family has been revealed, blending craftsmanship and art with technology for the better player
Mizuno MP-18 Irons Revealed
We’ve seen teasers online, even players winning tour events using them. Now, finally, full details of the new Mizuno MP-18 irons have been revealed and the story behind the concept is a fascinating one.
There are four new irons in the MP-18 iron line-up if you include the Fli-Hi model, which comes in 2-6-iron, all benefiting from Mizuno’s long-standing heritage in craftsmanship and expertise when it comes to making forged ‘players’ golf clubs’.
MP-18 – RRP £135 per club (RH only)
It all started with the blade, which takes great influence from one of Mizuno’s most experienced master craftsman or ‘Meister’ – a man called Turbo – who shaped and ground the original, designed in the Yuro factory based on his years of work with Sir Nick Faldo. Mizuno then scanned the end result and the MP-18 blades were born.
A true throwback to the musclebacks of Mizuno’s past, it has a shorter blade length, cambered top line and steep progression into sharp, compact wedges.
“We significantly shifted the balance of science and art with the MP-18s,” says Chris Voshall, Senior Club Engineer. “You can instantly notice a greater input from the master craftsmen in that the MP-18 is more like the blades that made Mizuno famous – just more precise in its flow and manufacturing. At impact, this is just about perfection.”
The MP-18 irons should boast an even softer feel thanks to an evolved Grain Flow Forged HD (High Density) process that concentrates the grain in those billets more tightly for more precise feedback.
The shorter blade length and low heel profile carry over from previous Major-winning iron models, while the ultra-thin topline has been further refined with an additional camber. The scoring clubs from #7 to pitching wedge then boast a progressively smaller, more sharply refined head.
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MP-18 SC – RRP £135 per club (RH and LH)
The MP-18 SC (Split Cavity) model is a compact cavity back. The slightly wider, cambered sole brings a greater degree of playability than the muscle-back, although thin, tapered top lines, short head lengths and smaller wedges mean this is still very much a tour-ready iron.
They are also forged using the same Grain Flow Forged HD process from a single billet of 1025 E Pure Select mild carbon steel as the muscle-back, to maintain the incredibly soft feel.
Compared to the MP-18 muscle-back, the heads are just 0.5mm taller and the top lines just 1mm thicker, again with a refined camber. The pitching wedge is also smaller than the other irons in the set.
“The MP-18 SC is an iron that combines a lot of practical needs – stability, workability and softness at impact – with our craftsmen’s desire for immaculate looks over the ball,” says Voshall. “Although the sole is a little wider than the muscle-back, from every playing position, the two models blend beautifully as a mixed set. The MP-18 SC wedges don’t taper off as dramatically in size as the muscle-back, so between the two models better players will find something that suits their eye.”
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MP-18 MMC – RRP £150 per club (RH only)
The MP-18 MMC (Multi Material Cavity) iron is for the ball strikers who love the latest and greatest technology. It is the fruit of a three-year project lead by Mizuno’s YORO master craftsmen to develop a highly stable, forgiving multi-metal construction iron, which also satisfied their aesthetic desires and demands at address.
Even with both lightweight titanium and heavier tungsten components sealed within its 1025E mild carbon steel head, the MP-18 MMC maintains a similar ‘tour ready’ profile and size to the MP-18 SC.
The MMC’s multi-material stability design uses lightweight Titanium (8g) and heavier Tungsten (20g) to deliver surprising off-centre performance, with the same High Density (HD) feel as the other two models. The short irons feature a dual-metal design, with the absence of the tungsten toe weight found in the longer irons keeping the scoring irons more workable.
The MP-18 MMC model features a players’ compact profile, which is similar in size to the MP-18 SC but with the added forgiveness of multi-material construction.
The MMC model will flow into any MP-18 split set, with the degree of offset carefully calculated to work equally well with a custom-built mixed set of either MP-18 and MP-18 SC, once lofts have been weakened to match either set.
MP-18 MMC Fli-Hi – RRP £150 (2-6 iron, RH only)
The MP-18 MMC Fli-Hi is the long iron replacement that offers a higher-flying option from long range with steeper landing angles. The latest Fli-Hi’s sleek new profile now envelopes a Maraging steel face, a Tungsten toe weight and an internal pocket for enhanced ball speed and ease of use.
The Fli-Hi’s Multi-Material stability design uses that Lightweight Maraging steel face and Tungsten toe weight (20g) to generate a high, stable ball flight, with the topline again a mere 1mm thicker than in the corresponding MP-18 muscle-back.
“The Fli-Hi is very much a fixture now on tour,” says Voshall. “Even the most classically minded players have converted to the #2 and #3 iron replacements. These are worlds away from heavily offset ‘game improvement’ hybrids – but much easier than a traditional long iron to flight and land in firm conditions.
The MP-18 irons will go on sale in September 2017.