By Brendan Mohler
Although it lagged behind the market leaders for years when it came to adjustable drivers, Callaway today introduced its second adjustable driver in the last 13 months, suggesting its new RAZR Fit Xtreme breaks new ground in design and construction and "will not be matched."
According to Alan Hocknell, Callaway senior vice president of research and development, the new RAZR Fit Xtreme, teased early this week through a unique campaign on Twitter, combines the looks and technologies of its FT Tour and RAZR Hawk drivers, with a new approach to the adjustable hosel and weights technology of last fall's RAZR Fit driver that focuses on separate head designs for each of the driver's five lofts.
Similar to the RAZR Fit, the RAZR Fit Xtreme, which has been on the USGA's list of conforming drivers for the last two months, gives players adjustability options in two areas: face angle and weight placement. The OptiFit Hosel allows the face to be set open, square, or closed while weights can be adjusted to alter the center of gravity and promote either a draw or neutral flight. But RAZR Fit Xtreme offers a different head design based on lofts and comes in five lofts rather than the four featured in RAZR Fit.
The 8.5, 9.5, and 10.5-degree heads are 440 cubic centimeters and have a more open face angle in the neutral position and a lower CG compared to the RAZR Fit. The higher lofts (11.5 and 13HT) offer a more draw-biased design, a larger volume (460 cc). In short, the range of face angle settings on the lower lofts goes from a more open "Open" setting to a less closed "Closed" setting, while the settings on the higher lofts offer a less open "Open" position and a more closed "Closed" position.
Even the bulge radius changes with each loft as a result of Callaway's research with players of a wide range of handicaps and clubhead speeds.
The RAZR Fit Xtreme utilizes a cup face design, what the company is calling Speed Frame Face technology, which allows for enhanced energy transfer through a wider distribution of stiffness and stress across the clubface. The design features the the company's patented "forged composite" material in the crown, which according to Callaway weighs just 12.1 grams, is the lightest driver crown in the game and lowers the CG to a new level.
"We worked tirelessly to improve on the best distance characteristics of our longest drivers," said Hocknell, "and the result is incredibly fast ball speed, plus the lowest CG of any adjustable driver in golf."
The club was released piece by piece beginning early this week through the use of a Twitter campaign called "Tweet to Unleash."
By using the hashtag #LongestDriverInGolf, Twitter users were automatically entered to win one of 10 drivers and were able to view glimpses of the RAZR Fit Xtreme before it was officially released.
According to Callaway officials, at one point on Monday afternoon, "#LongestDriverInGolf" became the top trending topic on Twitter, appearing more than 1,500 times in one hour.
RAZR Fit Xtreme also will offer a custom option featuring eight different color choices for the crown and sole of the club head. Also, custom laser engraving is available on the sole of the driver.
The standard model will be available at retail January 18, 2013 at a price of $400.