ClubTest 2016: Titleist 915 D3 Driver
CATEGORY: Better Player Drivers
WE TESTED: 9.5° (adjusts 8.75° to 11°), 10.5° (adjusts 9.75° to 12°) with Aldila Rogue Black 70 and Silver 60, as well as Mitsubishi Diamana D+ White 70 and S+ Blue 60 graphite shafts
KEY TECHNOLOGIES: The sleek, 440 cc club stays true to the Titleist name.
DISTANCE: The 915 D3 does its job nicely, even if it isn't a total masher; fairly long on center hits -- about the same as testers expect from their current clubs; it gets the ball deep enough for standard-length par 4s; maintains acceptable distance on heel and toe shots.
ACCURACY/FORGIVENESS: Provides what you'd expect -- enough help to keep poor swings in play but not always enough to keep shots in the fairway.
FEEL: Near-perfect balance and weighting make it a joy to swing time and again; extremely solid, a true Titleist; center hits feel lovely -- the balls come off with some heat.
PLAYABILITY: Typical, repeatable flight with the 915 D3 is a penetrating trajectory that pierces the wind; lower trajectory than some other models but plenty of run-out; testers can move shots around with relative ease.
LOOK: Definitely one of the best; what a driver should look like, period; the compact head and black finish are just about perfect -- guys would be proud to carry it in their bag.
It can be less forgiving than testers would like; good-enough distance, but it doesn't blow away the guys who have massive overall length.
BOTTOM LINE: The Titleist 915 D3 driver is a very competent carryover from 2015. With plenty of adjustability features, it holds its own in a competitive market.
HOT STIX'S TAKE: The 915 D3 is more forgiving than the 913 D3 it replaced. The pear-shaped head has a deep face that's slightly open at address, which gives it a traditional look. It's lower-launching and lower-spinning than most, with great workability. Launch: Low; Spin: Low
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MORE INFO ON THE TITLEIST 915 D3 DRIVER
From GOLF ClubTest 2015:
DISTANCE: Good overall length -- for most testers, it's not super-long but definitely not a short driver; shots scoot out there a bit better than they do with the 913D3.
ACCURACY/FORGIVENESS: The channel in the bottom of the clubhead seems to help with shots hit low on the face; acceptable correction on off-center hits; it's plenty accurate when you're in control of your swing.
FEEL: This is what a driver should feel like when you catch the sweet spot; the audible click at impact is what you expect from Titleist; misses aren't painful, while solid strikes are plenty satisfying.
PLAYABILITY: Piercing trajectory consistently puts you in the fairway; a shotmaker's club, it can move the ball wherever you want -- definitely for players who like to shape shots.
LOOK: One of the most beautiful clubs in the test; our panelists appreciate the classy, traditional appearance.
For some testers, it doesn't seem to be a huge improvement over the 913D3; a few guys are left wanting more distance, and help, on misses.
BOTTOM LINE: One of the better models tested. The 915D3 is another very good Titleist driver that provides sufficient length and control in an extremely attractive package.
HOT STIX'S TAKE: The 440 cc clubhead delivers relatively low launch and spin but more workability than most.Launch - Low; Spin - Low
From GOLF.com, October 1, 2014:
Every club company worth its salt is dedicated to boosting driver performance on off-center hits. Lively clubfaces with a range of thicknesses are a given, but companies such as Nike, TaylorMade, Adams and Tour Edge have begun to look beyond the face (or, more accurately, below it), adding slots and other design elements to the club's sole to produce more pop. The by-product, they say, is faster, more consistent ball speed on low hits.
Well, count Titleist among the believers. The new 915 D2 and 915 D3 drivers feature a deep, wide cutout known as an “Active Recoil Channel” (ARC) on the sole behind the leading edge, which allows the sole to flex more than it does in the 913 series drivers. Think of the cast titanium body as a spring that flexes in the crown and sole areas. The bottom line? Faster ball speeds (by 0.5 to 1 mph) and less spin on shots struck low on the face. What's more, the forged titanium face insert (which has thin sections in the heel and toe) delivers 99 percent of maximum ball speed on shots hit up to a half-inch off center.
The clubs also feature a similar MOI to 913 drivers. That's no small feat considering the ARC adds 8 grams close to the face. To counteract this, Titleist created a thinner crown, then redistributed the weight they saved to the back of the sole.
Company testing shows that the 915 D2 produces slightly higher-launching shots than the 913 D2 and, on average, 115 rpm less spin. The result? An average of three yards more carry and up to 15 more total yards. The 915 D3 spins 250 rpm less than its predecessor, which helps produce nine extra carry yards.
At 440 cc, the pear-shaped 915 D3 produces a lower, flatter trajectory, with about 250 rpm less spin than the 460 cc D2. The new D3 is also more workable than its sibling and has less built-in draw bias, making it a better fit for lower-handicappers. Both models feature the same SureFit Tour hosel as 913 drivers, so you can easily adjust loft (+1.5° to -0.75°) and lie (1.5° upright to 0.75° flat).
In conjunction with the 915 release, Titleist is offering five stock shafts -- two Aldila Rogues and three Mitsubishi Diamanas. With various weights and flex points available, finding the right fit should be simple. Both 915 models are available November 14. Price: $449. 915 D2: 7.5°, 8.5°, 9.5°, 10.5°, 12°; 915 D3: 7.5°, 8.5°, 9.5°, 10.5°.