The best golf drivers for 2018

By T.J. Auclair
PGA.com
Connect with T.J.

Series: Golf Buzz

Published: Tuesday, March 13, 2018 | 10:41 a.m.

If we're being honest, everybody's favorite golf club is a shiny, new driver, right?
 
Sure, a putter may be the most beloved club in the bag and -- in many cases -- a putter has a long-term relationship with its player.
 
But drivers? Those are like the slickest and latest sports cars. They promise more distance and more accuracy and, really, who doesn't want that?
 
In many cases, if you're fit properly, the new driver will provide those things too.
 
So, while you're considering your options for potential new drivers this coming season, we're here to help you out. Here's a look at some of the best currently available.
 
Callaway Rogue
 
Callaway Golf made a splash in 2017 with its Epic driver line, featuring what the company calls "Jailbreak Technology." Typically, the crown and the sole of your driver actually flex at impact, resulting in a loss of energy and then a loss of distance. With Jailbreak Technology, Callaway found a way to stabilize the crown and the sole. Titanium posts keep the sole and crown from bulging as much at impact because they are now connected, resulting in better energy transfer into the face, hence more ball speed and more distance.  
 
Now, with 2018's Rogue offerings, Callaway has again implemented its Jailbreak Technology, but also took this line a step further. 
 
Here's what Callaway says about the Rogue: 
 
Rogue employs improved Jailbreak Technology with new, hourglass-shaped titanium bars that are 25 percent lighter, while fulfilling their function to stiffen the crown and sole. The stiffer body allows the face to take on more impact-load to promote faster ball speed, and makes possible our new X-Face VFT face architecture, which promotes fast ball speed across an expansive area of the face. Together, Jailbreak and X-Face VFT work to create what we call the Jailbreak Effect, which promotes a remarkable boost in ball speed and distance.
 
You can check out the Rogue line up at www.callawaygolf.com. The drivers retail for $499.99.
 
Titleist 917D2 and 917D3
 
The Titleist 917D2 is a driver for anyone. It provides distance and forgiveness with a slightly higher launch and more spin. It comes with a 460cc clubhead. 
 
The Titleist 917D3, meanwhile, is built for the player who wants distance and workability. It features the classic Tour-inspired, 440cc pear-shaped profile -- more compact than the D2 -- with a slightly lower launch. 
 
The drivers retail for $550. You can learn more at www.titleist.com.
 
Wilson C300
 
If you've been on the fence about Wilson Staff clubs in recent years, we encourage you to get off that fence. The company is producing gear now that isn't just good, but great.
 
Also, here's a fun fact for you: Did you know that Wilson Staff has been the preferred club of choice for more major winners than any other company in history?
 
Now, let's check out the gorgeous C300 driver. It's impossible not to notice its deep, red, matte finish. Very sharp. On top of the head, close to the face of the driver, live two black "power holes" that serve the purpose of generating explosive distance across the entire face by flexing more at impact. More flex equals greater ball speed. More ball speed means longer drives. 
 
Price: $399.99. You can learn more at www.wilson.com
 
Cobra King F8
 
If you want a driver that's different from anything you've seen before, look no further than the Cobra King F8. We love it when companies try something new, something striking and something that has a technology we can physically see (instead of being built into the club). 
 
With the Cobra King F8, you get a first of its kind CNC milled face -- something you're most likely used to seeing only on putters and wedges.
 
The CNC milled face produces tighter tolerances and more consistent thicknesses than a standard hand-finished face. The driver -- great for the mid- to high-handicapper, has eight loft settings and comes with Cobra Connect, featuring Arccos sensors in the grip to record data from every swing to your smartphone.
 
The King F8 is available for $399.99. You can learn more at www.cobragolf.com
 
PING G400
 
Saying nothing of its technology -- which we'll get to in a minute -- the flat-black finish on the new PING G400 is just sharp as can be.
 
With bold "turbulators" across the top of the clubhead, the G400 can reduce drag 40 percent mid-downswing and 15 percent overall to increase clubhead speed and ball velocity for added distance with stability. 
 
Here's how PING describes the G400:
 
The G400 drivers' streamlined shape offers a big advancement in aerodynamics and stability. The multi-material design combines reduced drag and a thinner, stronger, faster T9S+ forged face to increase speed and distance. With a combined MOI over 9,000 and a deep CG, improved accuracy leads to tighter dispersion. 
 
The G400 is available for $399.99. You can learn more at www.ping.com.
 
Cleveland Launcher HB
 
The new HiBore crown on Cleveland's Launcher HB driver, moves the center of gravity low and deep, promoting a high-launch, low-spin trajectory.
 
With its ultra-light hosel, the weighting is optimized for high, long and straight drives.
 
Isn't that the combo every golfer wants?
 
The Launcher HB retails for $299.99. You can learn more at www.clevelandgolf.com
 
TaylorMade M3 and M4
 
TaylorMade routinely produces some of the most popular drivers on the PGA Tour. They're in the hands of the likes of Dustin Johnson, Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Justin Rose and Jon Rahm, just to name a few.
 
The 2018 line -- the adjustable M3 and the geocoutsic M4 -- both feature "Twist Face" technology.
 
Here's how TaylorMade describes Twist Face:
 
A radical departure from traditional driver-face design, Twist Face is engineered to take you farther and straighter... right down the center of the fairway.
 
Twist Face presents a revolutionary new face curvature with a corrective face angle on off-center hits, engineered to reduce side spin and deliver straighter shots. By providing more loft in the high-toe and less loft in the low-heel, this groundbreaking technology produces more consistent side spin in the areas where golfers commonly mis-hit.
 
The M3 retails for $499.99 and the M4 is $429.99. Learn more at www.taylormadegolf.com
 

T.J. Auclair is a Senior Interactive Producer for PGA.com and has covered professional golf since 1998, traveling to over 60 major championships. You can follow him on Twitter, @tjauclair.


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