Less than a year after TaylorMade launched the SLDR driver at the John Deere Classic, the company announced the arrival of an SLDR iron line on Monday.
While the iron has the SLDR name, it shares similar traits to TaylorMade's Speed Blade iron that was unveiled last year at the BMW Championship. Compared to TaylorMade's RocketBladez irons, SLDR and Speed Blade feature a longer 2mm-wide cut-thru slot behind the clubface — the cut-thru slot is found in the soles of the SLDR 3-7 irons — that, when flexed and rebounded at impact, increases the speed of the face for faster ball speeds, a higher launch angle and increased carry distances.
“Golfers want to hit their irons far, which has put us on a path to engineer iron sets that have driver-like face speed,” said Tomo Bystedt, TaylorMade’s director of product creation for irons, putters and wedges. “To find that speed, we created ultra-thin faces, introduced Inverted Cone Technology and now an enhanced Speed Pocket with ThruSlot Technology. The ThruSlot extends all the way through the bottom cavity, and works in conjunction with the ultra-thin clubface and deep undercut to promote tremendous face-flex at impact.”
To help with sound and feel, the cut-thru slot is filled with an advanced vibration-dampening polymer; a shock-absorbing badge was also positioned in the back cavity to improve feel.
In an effort to make the irons more appealing to players on TOUR, TaylorMade designers gave SLDR a classic shape with a thinner topline and sole than Speed Blade. According to TaylorMade, the overall look of the head "add to the iron’s overall beauty and promote keen response and playability."
The company plans to unveil the iron on TOUR next week at HP Byron Nelson Championship and anticipates strong interest from its Tour staff.
TaylorMade's SLDR iron will be available June 6 for $900 in 8-piece sets with KBS's Tour C-Taper 90 steel shaft (regular or stiff flex). Fujikura graphite is also available in three weights and flexes: 77-grams (stiff), 67 grams (regular), and 57 grams (senior).