January 26, 2016
By Jonathan Wall, PGATOUR.COM
- Titleist unveiled its new NXT Tour and NXT Tour S golf balls on Tuesday. (Titleist Golf)
Titleist debuted new versions of its NXT Tour, NXT Tour S and Velocity golf balls at the PGA Merchandise Show on Tuesday that focus on new cover and core innovations for a softer feel with even more distance.
“When we look at the results of our extensive robot and player testing, we are exceedingly confident that golfers will experience new Titleist golf ball models that outperform their competition and deliver on their meaningful performance improvements relative to distance, short-game performance and soft feel,” said Michael Mahoney, Titleist's director of golf ball product management.
The three-piece NXT Tour delivers longer distance with a higher launch, thanks to a larger center dual core that produces low spin and higher ball speeds. The larger center dual core is combined with a proprietary Fusablend cover material that gives the ball a softer feel and shot-stopping control on approach shots.
"When you look at the dual core technology of NXT Tour, one of the critical elements is the relationship of the softer inner core to the firmer outer core," said Matt Hogge, Titleist's R&D director of product implementation, golf ball. "We’ve increased the size of that softer center so that by volume it’s about 66 percent larger. That’s a significant change which allowed us to knock down spin on full shots for longer distance."
The new NXT Tour S is the softer-feeling model in the line. The ball has nearly identical performance benefits to NXT Tour with a reformulated softer compression core and durable Fusablend cover that make it noticeably softer than the previous version. Even with the addition of a softer core and cover, NXT Tour S still maintains distance off the tee and precision in the short game.
“Golfers that play NXT Tour S value very soft feel, and they still want Titleist performance," said Scott Cooper, Titleist's R&D product development manager. "They want to hit it long off the tee and have great control around the greens. For 2016, our design goal was to further differentiate NXT Tour S from NXT Tour in terms of feel, while still delivering on those performance expectations.”
Titleist's R&D team also made significant changes to Velocity — a distance model that's been a part of Titleist's ball line since 2012. In search of more distance, while maintaining short game feel, engineers developed a larger, faster LSX core that yields higher ball speeds.
The Titleist Velocity was given a larger, faster LSX core that yields higher ball speeds. (Titleist Golf)
"The core is the engine of the golf ball," Hogge said. "We’ve made the core of the new Velocity even larger – it’s now 1.575 inches in diameter. A larger core means a thinner cover. That combination gives Velocity great ball speed. Add in Velocity’s aerodynamic package and you have an incredible formula for distance."
The ball also features low spin construction and 328 dimples in a spherically-tiled tetrahedral design that produces a penetrating ball flight with more rollout. The NAZ2 cover was also made thinner and combines with the larger core to improve greenside feel.
Titleist's NXT Tour ($35 per dozen), NXT Tour S ($35) and Velocity ($27) will be available Jan. 28 in golf stores.
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