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TSN Senior Reporter

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TaylorMade has unveiled a significant change to its line of drivers with the launch of Stealth, a family of carbon-faced drivers. The new product moves away from a clubface made of titanium, which has been used in building drivers since the 1990s and replaces is with one made of 60 layers of carbon sheets, built to optimize the energy transfer from the club.

The technology has been in development for some time but only now has it been possible to create a carbon-faced driver.

“In the mid-2000s, our research team developed an understanding that the weight of the face can affect impact efficiency, more specifically, the lighter the face, the more efficient the impact and the better the ball speed,” said Brian Bazzel, vice-president product creation at TaylorMade, in a release.

“We realized titanium faces could only take us so far and carbon would be the face material of the future. This breakthrough design of a lightweight carbon face in Stealth, has created a whole new starting line, a new era of drivers, a new threshold of performance and a new platform for more innovation.”

The face of the new club, which is a rich red colour, provides more speed by taking advantage of the weight saving in carbon and the more precise face geometry. The lightweight carbon fibre material means a face that weighs 25 grams, 40 per cent lighter than a titanium face of the same size. That allows for a clubhead that is 11 per cent larger than SIM2 and SIM2 Max drivers and nearly 20 per cent larger than the 2020 SIM driver. The new carbon face showed dramatic increases in ball speed against the SIM2 and SIM2 Max drivers.

One of the final steps in the creation of the new club face was the application of a nanotexture cover that sits on top of the 60 layers of carbon. It’s a thin cover of polyurethane that provided the ideal amount of friction between the face and the ball that reduces spin.

“The technological innovation of our nanotexture technology brings the entire face together and was a key to making this driver a reality,” said Tomo Bystedt, senior director product creation, Carbonwood drivers. “Without this revolutionary cover design, we could not have achieved the launch and spin performance required to extract the optimal performance in dry as well as wet conditions. Once we added the nanotexture technology to the grooves, we were able to unlock the full performance of a carbon face.”

Another addition to the club is a 10-gram sliding weight track that allows players to dial in shot control by moving the mass to different parts of the sole to dial in the desired shot shape. That feature is available on the Stealth Plus model.

The full Stealth line, which includes the Stealth HD and Stealth Women’s models, continues to offer some of TaylorMade’s past technological advances with TwistFace and the flexibility of the Thru-Slot Speed Pocket. Both help deliver more distance and better accuracy.

Stealth Plus has a suggested price of $779.99 while the Stealth and Stealth HD models are listed at $749.99. They will be in golf outlets starting Feb. 4.