The Rogue Pro, the most successful selling players distance iron in Callaway’s current lineup, will get an aesthetic addition this week with the new Rogue Pro Black.
The new dark aesthetic marks the second time in as many years that Callaway has offered a special run of a recently released iron. The Callaway Apex CF16 added its black-finish version in May 2017, eight months after its introduction and then re-upped the limited run later last summer.
The new look for the popular Rogue Pro grew from the success of the Apex iron’s special PVD finish.
The Rogue Pro Black incorporates the technology, shape and size of the original Rogue Pro. That includes the compact, thinner top line and sole look preferred by better players. Of course, said Scott Manwaring, Callaay’s director of irons development, the Rogue Pro Black’s most defining aspects are the ones unseen, each designed to bring horsepower to a typically conservative shape while at the same allowing the multipiece design and its thin, flexible wraparound cupface to produce the feel usually reserved for irons made of one solid structure.
The key to that feel quotient is to use air-infused microspheres within a urethane compound inside the body of the Rogue Pro Black design. The urethane’s role isn’t to make the face flex better, it’s to make impact feel better, Manwaring said.
As he said of the original Rogue Pro design when it was launched in February, “I do not believe you need urethane to help you get to .830 COR,” he said. “I believe that the true benefit of urethane is changing the COR sound curve.”
Another element to the Rogue Pro/Rogue Pro Black’s design that has improved its distance capability—especially on off-center hits—is the use of a variable face thickness construction to the cupface. The VFT design is unique to the Rogue Pro/Rogue Pro Black.
“We’re now at the point where our [variable face thickness designs] aren’t simply optimizing for ballspeed, nor are they simply optimizing for launch angle, now we’re starting to find ways to adjust for spin,” Manwaring said. “So for certain models we can change our VFT for spin but not affect speed.”
Given the Rogue Pro/Rogue Pro Black’s better player focus, one other internal structure plays a an important role. While the other irons in the Rogue lineup push the distance envelope ahead of all other aspects, the Rogue Pro’s design has been tweaked to optimize spin for more control for those players who demand it. The placement of the intricately shaped internal tungsten weighting through a special “metal injection molding” process (making the piece twice as heavy as similarly sized steel insert) is aimed at optimizing spin and trajectory control for these types of players.
The Rogue Pro Black’s dark finish also includes a special all-black edition of the True Temper XP 105 shaft.
The Rogue Pro Black will be available June 8 through Callaway’s website as a custom option only. The offerings include two standard set makeups only: 4-iron through gap wedge (eight clubs, $1,200) and 5-iron through pitching wedge (six clubs, $825). Click on the following links to shop the Rogue family of clubs at Dick's Sporting Goods and Golf Galaxy.