Cleveland Launcher HB Turbo Driver Review - Joel Tadman delivers his verdict on this value driver offering from Cleveland
– A Turbocharged Cup Face stretches along the crown and sole and has a unique variable thickness pattern that delivers more speed across the entire face.
– The redesigned HiBore Crown features a prominent step that lowers the CG, while the Ultralight Hosel removes undesirable mass.
– A new Miyazaki C. Kua shaft pulls weight from the length of the shaft and repositions it on the grip end, making it feel easier to swing quickly.
Cleveland impressed us last year with the Launcher HB driver. It offered simple (non-adjustable), no-nonsense distance with a strong, draw biased shape. That trend has continued with this new model and while there has been a £30 price increase, there is extra performance to justify it.
The Launcher HB Turbo looks faster thanks to the raised ridges at the rear of the crown. It has quite a stretched out look from front-to-back and is generally busy on top. The line where the crown drops down a level encourages a closed face when used for alignment, which will help slicers, and we think the matte finish makes the head look more premium.
Out of the middle, this driver can compete with the major players in the category. It gave us ball speeds in excess of 156 mph, nearly 2 mph quicker than with the previous model.
It launched a little lower, but with spin remaining low at around 2300 rpm the carry distance increased, admittedly by under a handful of yards, but the lower, more optimum flight meant we got even more total yardage.
It feels fast and stable at impact but does come with a loud, high-pitched sound that we didn’t overly care for. That said, direction seemed simple to control as we could rely on the draw-biased head to return the ball back to our target, although it did overdo it at times. Off-centre hits held their line well while also maintaining good distance.
The Launcher HB Turbo remains the simple, fuss-free and wallet-friendly driver choice for golfers that should see gains in performance when using the correct shaft and loft combination. There is now also the option of a Draw model for those who need even more slice correction, further enhancing the appeal.