When you talk fairway woods, you have to talk Tour Edge and their Exotics lineup. The EXS offerings last year were a massive boon for the company, and they are looking to build on that with the new EXS 220 offerings. In regard to fairway woods, you are talking a lot of tech, and a tidy $249.99 price point. Since I’m sure that caught your attention, let’s dive in, shall we?
A solid offering, though perhaps not the star of the 220 metalwoods lineup. Offers solid ball speeds, playable spin numbers, ample launch, and a whole lot of wanting to keep the ball in play. Combine that with a sole that really does glide across the turf and this may not be the longest fairway on the market, but it is among the most playable.
An Exotics Fairway Story
There are a lot of similarities in the design of the EXS 220 fairway and its big brother driver, but there are a few departures as well.
Much like the driver, the fairways feature a Dual Carbon Fiber sole design with the material being used in two sections, heel and toe, that allowed Tour Edge to put more weight in the center of the sole, namely low and back. This placement let them make the Slip-Stream Sole section more aggressive than we have seen in a while and thusly increase its ability to funnel away dirt/grass.
The new Diamond Face technology is in place with the fairway wood as well, and while it was designed with the same simulation software that the face on the driver was created with, there are actually 44 diamonds instead of 42. These shapes are applied on the rear of the Cup Face design that Tour Edge is synonymous with in fairway woods in varying depths and thicknesses to offer speed generation and retention where golfers need it most.
Notably, the EXS 220 is a bonded hosel, meaning no adapter. This was done to save weight, and likely to help keep the price down to the $249.99 number that they hit. While some will balk at that, they are still bringing three different 3-Wood lofts (13.5°, 15°, and 16.5°) as well as a 5-Wood (18°) and 7-Wood (21°) so there are ample options. They’re also fairly neutral in both face angle and weighting (draw/fade) so the need for the adjustability isn’t a make or break.
A last thing worth noting, the EXS 220 Fairway doesn’t feature a carbon crown, and though others have gone that way for weight savings, Tour Edge has long been known for their applications and evolutions of metals used in golf clubs. As such, they are using a new Hyper-Steel that saved 14% of weight over the EXS. That weight savings was placed into the center of the sole, and combined with the savings of the dual carbon fiber, it has weight low center and low back in the head with the goal of launch while keeping spin on the lower side.
As always, tech talk is fun, but does the performance match the tech? Read on to find out.
Tour Edge Exotics 220 Fairway
I’ve long been a sucker for a Tour Edge Exotics fairway wood. From the days when the Exotics lineup was priced in the realm of drivers with their use of Titanium and the application of design ideas that set them apart from, and would soon be mimicked by almost all of, the rest of the industry. Today companies talk about fairway woods and distance like it’s the new thing, but Tour Edge was doing that before anyone. I’ve bought, played, and gamed many over the past few years, so working with this one had me curious, does the performance hold up to the name while the price has come down?
I was sent the 15° EXS 220 fairway with a PX HZRDUS Smoke Yellow 6.0 which plays at 43” and according to my pre-review spec checks, swing-weighted out to a D4 paired with the Lamkin Crossline 360 that is the stock grip. Worth noting, this setup came with the 9g rear weight, but 3g, 6g, 11g, and 14g weights are also available through Tour Edge.
As is always the case, this review was done both on the course as well as through the gathering of data on the Foresight GC2 launch monitor. While this article isn’t going to feature my usual screen cap of data due to some unfortunate technical difficulties, I do have the averages available for discussion. Over two sessions with the 220 15.0 I saw: Ball Speed – 151.3, Launch Angle – 12.1, Spin – 4,121 RPM, Peak – 34 Yards, Carry – 233 Yards.
First and foremost, this fairway is a launcher. The launch angles throughout the testing were higher than I typically see out of the 3-Wood, this is a mixed bag for me personally at my swing speed, but more on that as we go. What I want to make clear is having played the CBX and EX10 fairways for a long time, the launch here was notably higher than what I saw out of those. I never worked with the first EXS fairway so I can’t comment there, but the 220 was amply playable off the deck because of this.
Mixed into the launch story is the forgiveness factor. As you read above, I saw some really high (for me) peak heights and higher spin numbers than I expected. Those things combined with the Diamond Face design and weight shift in the design of the head had me hitting a lot of fairways. One thing that jumped out there were shots slightly toward the heel were shockingly good, and at times almost felt more powerful. Also worth noting, as I always have when I’ve worked with TEE fairways in the past, the Slip-Stream sole works, it’s every bit as good to me as the now mythical “V” shaped sole that others use, if not better for allowing more contact area with the ground while reducing drag via debris.
Beyond the ball wanting to stay in play, which is obviously going to be king for most people, I did see more spin than I expected out of the EXS 220 fairway, and with that I think I did sacrifice some overall distance. While the head design is more back and low than in the past which can increase those things, I also want it clear that I vehemently believe fitting is a key here, the counter-balanced shaft designs aren’t something that works great for me and I do believe that played a role here. Something I do plan on revisiting post review is moving to a more standard weighted setup and giving the head another go.
This brings me to a key point though with the entire EXS 220 lineup, the availability is expanding rapidly. Tour Edge has made a massive effort in fighting the biggest battle, getting clubs into people’s hands. The prices obviously help there as I do agree with the company mantra that nothing out there gives the bang for the buck that the EXS lines do, but more is needed. This is why they decided to implement the same 48-Hour Custom Fit Delivery they used in the past with the HL offerings, this means after being fit you would have you clubs in-hand in just 48 hours.
Tour Edge continues to be the engine that could. Growing, expanding, improving, but never losing sight of their roots, and I look forward to your feedback on the EXS 220 fairways as well as the rest of the lineup. Be sure to share your thoughts with us here, as well as on the THP community.
Loft Options: 3-Wood (13.5°, 15°, and 16.5°), 5-Wood (18°), 7-Wood (21°)
Shafts: PX HZRDUS Smoke Yellow (6.0, 6.5), Fujikura Ventus 4t Core (R, S), Fujikura Air Speeder 40A (R3, R2, R)