From Golf Magazine (ClubTest, February 2010)
Category: Game-Improvement Drivers
We tested: 9.5°, 10.5° with Aldila Reax 60 graphite shaft; 9.5°, 10.5° with Fujikura Motore F1 65 graphite shaft
Company line: "Flight Control Technology lets you change loft, face angle and lie for up to 40 yards of side-to-side trajectory variation. Our 'Inverted Cone Technology' offers max forgiveness on off-center hits. A deeper CG helps to launch shots high and long."
OUR TESTERS SAY:
PROS: One of the top overall performers; the adjustable head makes it fun and easy to try to find a new, better ball flight; springy, energetic face, an efficient transfer of power into the ball every time; pretty consistent forgiveness; the less effort you put into it, the more it delivers; masks potential distance loss on heel or toe strikes; penetrating ball flight.
CONS: Tendency to overswing due to lightweight feel; Motore shaft might be too tip-stiff for "slower" swingers.
R9 460: $299, graphite; taylormadegolf.com
From Golf Magazine (July 2009)
TaylorMade continues to lead the way in terms of adjustable drivers. In March 2009, it released the revolutionary R9 (430 cc) with eight clubface settings and removable weights (totaling 18 grams). The design allows you to alter directional ball flight up to 75 yards. Now comes the beefier (460 cc), more forgiving R9 460. It, too, offers eight clubface settings (up to 40 yards of left-to-right flight change) but no removable weights.
The R9 460 launches shots, on average, 1-degree higher with 300 to 400 rpm less spin than R9. Its big, broad face features "inverted cone" technology to max out distance on misses. At $299, this stick is easier on the wallet than other adjustable-face angle drivers and is on par with the majority of fixed face angle drivers.
• Company testing reveals that shots struck one-inch off-center lose just 2 mph ball speed versus center hits. That's the equivalent of four yards, based on 100 mph swing speed.
• Neutral (N) and Right (R) are two hosel settings (among eight total) that tweak face angle, loft and lie. Different settings can alter launch angle as much as 2-degrees and backspin up to 1,000 rpm.
• R9 460 targets those who prefer a simpler, easier-to-use big stick than the fully loaded R9 driver.
• The 45.75-inch shaft is longer than R9 (by 0.5-inches), lighter (by five grams), and has a more flexible tip. The premise is to help you increase swing speed and launch.
R9 460: $299, graphite; R9 TP 460: $399, graphite; taylormadegolf.com
From The Shop Blog (May 2009)
Like the original R9, the new R9 460 features Flight Control Technology (FCT), a system that allows golfers to change the face angle and lie angle of the driver by unscrewing the head from the shaft and re-attaching it in one of eight different positions.
While the all-titanium head of the newest R9 is a full 460cc, it does not have a movable weight system like its smaller sibling. But the R9 460 does have a deeper face and lower center of gravity than the original R9, which should help it resist twisting on off-center hits and promote a higher ball flight. It should also create more spin than the original R9, which should help slower-swinging players add distance. Read more in The Shop