Tour Edge Exotics EXS Pro iron, wedge bring "small batch" collection and classic looks inspired by—and catering to—better players
The Tour Edge Exotics EXS Pro collection is what company founder and chief designer David Glod likes to call “small batch.” Just like with last week's metalwood introduction, that terminology applies to the exclusive nature of the EXS Pro iron and wedge lines, too, which got their inspiration from the company’s list of endorsers on the PGA Tour Champions. This “direct from the tour van” group of products also has a “small batch” feel in the sense that it isn’t for everyone.
But the clean look is a classic that all golfers will appreciate, Glod said. The line includes the cavity back EXS Pro Forged irons, the muscleback EXS Pro Blade irons and the EXS Blade wedge. Those who know the inside story on the irons and wedges have talked about the tour influence, certainly, but they also called it a personal pet project of the boss.
“I’m really excited about how these turned out,” Glod said, noting the subtle curve on the heel section to improve turf interaction from past company better player irons. “We went back to a much more traditional offset platform through the set, and these are a little shallower than they have been in the short irons.”
For all the classic elements in the shape, the EXS Pro Forged cavity backs aren’t a total throwback. Far from it, the lofts are very much in line with the stronger modern lofts without going to an extreme (32-degree 7-iron). In addition, a 10-gram tungsten weight in the toe of the long and mid-irons (3- through 6-iron) adds stability on mis-hits. An electro-formed cavity badge damps unwanted vibration, while the grooves are milled into the face for more precise edges and volume.
The EXS Blade irons don’t pretend to be anything other than traditional, starting with a 7-iron loft of 35 degrees. (By comparison, the EXS 220 game improvement irons the company launched in January feature a 27.5-degree 7-iron.) Like the EXS Pro irons, these are forged and milled from S25C carbon steel, which includes milling the face, the grooves, the subtle shaping in the back of the iron and the thin topline.
“A lot of our players on the Champions still want to play blades and still want these lofts,” Glod said. “We did want both of these irons to have two different sets for two different styles of play because honestly we’re planning on getting more staff players on both the tour level and the club level.”
Still, Glod did concede that the cavity back interest will likely exceed blade use by about three to one.
The better player focus concludes with the EXS Blade wedge line, which is available in six lofts from 50 to 60 degrees. It features a more flared toe shape to raise the center of gravity, while an extra dose of milling in the center of the back of the wedge also allows a little more mass to be higher in the design to help better players flight their wedge shots down. The EXS Blade wedge features narrow and deep grooves on the lower lofts and wider and shallow grooves on the higher lofts to best control spin for the shots and conditions typical for when those lofts are played.
The EXS Pro irons ($150 per club), EXS Blade irons ($150 per club) and EXS Blade wedges ($150) will be available beginning June 1.