This year I did something that I haven’t done since I started playing golf seriously, I bought a driver new and paid full price for it. Anyone who has read this blog over the last ten years will attest that is a big deal for me.
This year I bought the new TaylorMade M2, and after half a dozen rounds with it, here is what I have found. First, I went for the M driver that was NOT fully adjustable. In the past I have owned the R7 460, R9, and R1, all fully adjustable. The M2 intrigued me because of all the talk I had heard about its forgiveness, and let’s admit it, everyone wants forgiveness. But M2 claims not only is it forgiving, but it is longer too. So that is the promise, let’s see how it does in my real-world testing.
TaylorMade is no stranger to forgiving drivers, I personally think my R1 Driver is very forgiving, however, I think I lost a bit of yardage over what I could do with my R9. My M2 is a 9.5 degree head with a Fujikura Pro 60 stiff shaft. Now, the M2 is adjustable, in the sense that you can change the loft, and by doing so change the face angle as well. It basically works like this, if you add loft you get more left turn, or slice help. If you decrease loft you get more right turn, or hook help. This is important to know, because it should dictate the starting loft you choose. For example, if you are like me and try to hit a slight fade, the left adjustment, specifically how much, is what is important to me. Also, I am not a high ball hitter with a driver, I would say I have a medium apex on my drives, so I am not too concerned about lofting up a bit. OK, so that is my thinking going in, but if you are in doubt, please get fitted. These days, if you know you are going to buy a driver, it saves a lot of guess-work.
OK, so how is this driver? Well, I am happy to say that after a bit of break-in and a couple of adjustments, it lives up to most of the hype. I had the pleasure of putting it in the bag last week, for a charity golf tournament at Cinnabar Hills in San Jose, CA. The course is really nice, located in the foothills of the Silicon Valley, with many challenging holes, that definitely calls for a driver on many tees. My M2 was fantastic. I hit nearly every fairway, and had a couple of really big clutch drives that helped my team. One in particular that shows, I think the strength of the M2, was on a long uphill par 5 into about a 10 MPH wind. I hit a very big drive and carried it far enough up the hill that our youngest member had a shot at getting us on in 2. The sound is really nice too, not too loud, not too piercing, and not like an aluminum can.
Forgiveness, yes, but don’t expect it to fix your driving issues, just expect it to keep you closer to the fairway on a wayward shot. Distance, yes indeed, nice big sweet spot and it does a nice job correcting your slightly off-center hits. One thing I had to get used to was the slightly less tall face. I tend to tee down more with this one than I did with my R1. Once I get used the ball being teed a bit lower and lofted it up about a degree, I started hitting it well and I am still gaining confidence with every round.
Now, here is the big thing for me, should you buy the M2? Yes, of course! TaylorMade makes really great drivers, and I can’t think of any of their drivers in the last ten years that have not been good. The M2 is one of those drivers you buy, and probably keep in your bag for a good number of seasons. Do I wish I had the M1 instead, yes and no. I like to tinker with my driver, and have had fully adjustable drivers for most of the time I have golfed, but I don’t think I am missing anything with the M2. I was able to get the adjustments I need, and honestly, I would probably set up the M1 in a very similar way to what I have done with the M2.
- Is is longer?
- Yes, for me it is, but it will not make you the long drive champ of your club, expect 5 yards more on average shots and up to 10-15 yards on a really well struck shot. That is what I have seen, of course your results will vary.
- Is it more forgiving?
- Yes, a bit. My R1 was forgiving too, but I do think the M2 feels softer, and with that and a hotter launch, I give it high marks for forgiveness.
- If you are someone with a wicked slice, this club won’t fix that, but if you are someone who drives pretty well and are looking for a few more yards and less penalty for off-center strikes, this club is for you.
Right now TaylorMade is beginning to discount the M line of drivers, at as of this writing the M1 has a $100 reduction in price in the US. Keep an eye out for discounts on the M2 as well in the future.