Before we get into the review, please note that this review was done by a good friend of ours who is a + handicap, has a driver swing speed of 125mph and has won 20+ mini tour events. With that said, here is his review on the TaylorMade SLDR Driver:
It's TaylorMade so it's always tough for me to say anything bad about this company. There haven't been many times that I've used something of theirs and not liked it to be honest. A few years back when they introduced the white color, I finally thought they were nuts and made something horrible looking but then I got one and quickly changed my tune.
Here is a quick look at the SLDR Driver from GolfLife TV
Anyway, this is about the latest SLDR driver.
Obviously the look of this thing. It just looks like you can't miss it when you set it down. Sets up perfect. I like the fact they went to a glossy grey. And last but not least, we just have to adjust a slider now so that's a plus. You can also adjust the shaft but who does that? Heck, who changes anything after the first time anyway? If you get fit for the club - like you should - then why do you need to change settings?
Honestly I can't think of any but I guess since nothing is perfect so I have to put one, right? I don't know. If I must nit pick the club, the bottom does look kind of cheap but that's pushing it. Also the sound doesn't have that crisp sound to it like their other drivers. Another con is they will probably replace this driver in 6 months (I take that back...3 weeks)
What Taylor says about the SLDR driver is pretty damn straight on. No longer do I need a 7 degree which is hard to find but now, with this club I'm actually at 9.5 which I've never been at that kind of loft. So with more loft equals straighter drives so that's awesome for me.Without any launch monitors or stuff like that, I just had to do normal testing. I'm a pretty good player - around +2. My swing speed sits at 125mph.
I just went to my home course, drove out to the 18th hole and started comparing drivers. I hit 5 balls per driver so the SLDR was going up against a R9 and R1. I really only hit 3 bad out of the 15 and was lucky enough that it was one per driver.
R9 was first.
Average = 315
R1 up next.
Average = 309
Average = 325
The first thing you probably notice is the inconsistency of the R9 for me. Sure, some weren't dead nuts perfect but they were pretty close.
There was no wind. So I don't know why it jumps around 10 yards. but to be honest, the R9 has that extra sweet spot. I can average 310 all day but sometimes a 360+ pops up and I can never tell why. I'm guessing I hit sprinklers sometimes.
Then you have the R1 which stays pretty much the same distance. This driver was never really a fav of mine and maybe after doing this, that's the reason.
Now you have the SLDR. Those numbers are pretty close. If I had something or someone out there seeing where balls landed, I can bet they all landed at the 320-325 mark and this is why I love this thing.
Honestly while the numbers look close, it really wasn't. Longest drive was the R9. But the SLDR was 10 times more consistent and it felt better off the face. The last two drives with the SLDR actually felt like they were 350+ easy but maybe they hit soft, who knows. I will tell you, later that day (with wind behind me) I did hit one 388.
Me personally, I would actually buy this thing and I don't buy golf equipment. The look is great, the performance is awesome and it's by far their best driver since the R7-R9. Mix that with an extra 10 yards and consistency, it's just a no-brainer. By the way, this wasn't even using my normal shaft so that might get scary when I pop that in this head.
I'm sure it will be like going from a V6 to a V8.