50 Words or Less
The Callaway Steelhead XR fairway woods come in a wide array of lofts, sizes, and lengths to suit every need. Easy to launch and forgiving.
Callaway has done a great job marketing their high performance Epic line to those that want to be on the leading edge of technology. Simultaneously, they’ve appealed to those with fond memories of Callaway’s greatest hits with the Steelhead XR line. The latter now stretches from irons to fairway woods with the release of the Steelhead XR fairway woods. We wanted to know whether these were clubs with modern performance or just nostalgia pieces.
Callaway continues to put out some of the best looking clubs in golf. With the Steelhead XR FW, the black, blue, and carbon fiber scheme is carried through from the headcover to the Lamkin UTx grip. From every angle, these clubs just look cool.
At address, you’ll notice that the carbon fiber is visible in the rear of the crown. This has become Callaway’s signature of late, and I love the way it looks through the dark blue crown. On a fairway wood, this detail is far enough from the ball that it’s not distracting. Also, my eye is more drawn to the chevron alignment aid between the Speed Steps.
The head size is average, but the shaping and taller face make it appear compact and powerful.
Sound & Feel
To my ear, the Callaway Steelhead XR fairway woods have a perfect impact sound. It’s medium volume and crisp with a robust metallic quality. My only complaint in this department is that the feedback is minimal – shots all over the face sound explosive.
With the Steelhead XR, Callaway is offering one of the widest arrays of heads and lofts that I’ve ever seen. The 3W and 5W are to be expected. To that Callaway has added a strong 3W (which is slightly smaller than the standard 3W) and a 4W. For those that want more loft, there are also 7 and 9 woods. Finally, the line up includes a Heavenwood which is half a degree stronger than the 7W at 20.5 degrees, but nearly 3W length (42.75″) and head size. This is a tremendous option for players who need more loft but don’t want to sacrifice distance or forgiveness.
Regardless of the configuration you choose, the Steelhead XR FW is forgiving and easy to launch. My shots were producing consistent carry distances whether the impact was perfect or thin. Ball speeds also stayed high when I wandered to the left and right of center.
Callaway is offering two versions of the Mitsubishi Tensei CK Blue shaft in the Steelhead XR – one at 55 grams and one at 65 grams. With the 65 gram version, I found the club to be light but well balanced. There is noticeable kick in the shaft, but it stayed with me unless I really swung out of my shoes. Really aggressive swingers may want to look into Callaway’s other shaft options, but the majority of golfers should be well served with the Tensei CK Blue.
The Callaway Steelhead XR fairway woods draws on the company’s rich history of fairway woods – specifically the Steelhead shape and Hawkeye sole – and adds something to it as well. This is a versatile, reliable club that golfers can trust on the tee, in the fairway, and even those occasional forays into the rough.