We spent a lot of time last year talking about how Wilson Golf was on the comeback trail. They used to be at the top of the industry and many of the best players in the world trusted their equipment.
The company went through some slower times… their products didn’t catch on and they fell behind the pack in terms of both design and technology. 2005 saw them revive the Wilson Staff name and start down the long road back to the top. Much is expected of the 2006 Wilson Golf line and it could be a real make it or break it year for the company. Our first Wilson review of the year focuses on the Pd6 driver.
The Pd6 driver is a huge improvement of last year’s Pd5. Wilson has pulled out all the stops in hopes of making the perfect driver for the more accomplished player. Let’s first have a look at some of the technologies used. Wilson uses “L-Pods” (weights) to alter the center of gravity in their drivers. The Pd6 has two L-Pods located in the sole of the club… towards the middle of the head. These forward weights help raise the center of gravity… providing a slightly lower launch angle. One of the biggest technologies from Wilson is their ETF or Energy Transfer Frame technology. The Wilson Golf website does a good job of explaining ETF but I’ll try and sum it up. Think of it as an energy “catch-all”… it helps transfer energy to the face instead of letting it disperse throughout the head. More energy transfered back to the face… the more energy passed on to the ball. The more energy passed to the ball… the farther the ball should go. The Pd6 also features a 410CC head and a great stock shaft.
People are slowly warming up to the Wilson name again and if they can continue to make quality clubs like the Pd6… it will only help. The Pd6 is the best Wilson driver in recent memory. My customers really like the way the club looks. The 410CC size is hidden very well and it’s refreshing to see a non-460CC head. The ETF technology helps make the Pd6 very forgiving and the club feels great on most shots. The lower ball flight… thanks to a combination of the forward L-Pods and the high kick point on the shaft… make this driver very appealling to the better player. Wilson offers some great shaft options in the Pd6 and their custom department is very good. The stock Aldila NV-PL 65 is a great shaft for most better players but some may choose to try a shaft like the UST ProForce V2 (good for someone that demands a lot of control) or the Aldila NVS (good for someone wanting a slightly higher ball flight). I think one of the keys to this driver is understanding who it is for. The Pd6 is designed for a golfer that is looking to shape his/her shots. Most of these golfers also like a slightly lower ball flight and don’t need to use a club that reaches the legal limit for clubhead size. It doesn’t really feature any “slice fighting” technologies so don’t expect it to turn your banana into a frozen rope. Wilson also offers the same technology in their Dd6 driver… and the majority of players are better off with it. I’ve heard a few negatives too… the main one having to do with feel. Many players mention that the Wilson still doesn’t have a driver that feels as good as some of the other “big boys” in the performance driver category. The company is closing this gap but it doesn’t look like they are there yet. Another knock on this club has nothing to do with it’s performance. The Wilson line still lacks that “wow” factor with many players. It’s unfortunate that a club can look great, feel great and perform great but some players will still turn it down because it lacks a “big” name or flashy cosmetics. Get the club that works best for you… not the club that looks the best in your golf bag.
A quick review… the Pd6 offers the better player the ability to shape shots, keep the ball low and transfer maximum energy to the ball. Wilson is able to wrap it all up in an attractive and affordable 410CC package with a decent stock shaft. Wilson is getting closer to the industry leaders and they could get back in the race very soon with more quality products like the Pd6.
Overall Rating – 80%
Target Handicap – 15 and below – This driver is targeted at the better player
Head Size – 410CC
Stock Shaft – Aldila NV-PL 65