Srixon Z H45 Hybrid Review

Srixon Z H45 Hybrid (12)

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The Srixon Z H45 Hybrid marks Srixon’s return to the American market and delivers a clean looking, forgiving hybrid that will cater to a wide range of golfers.

Srixon Z H45 Hybrid (11)

Introduction

It’s funny, right as I developed a fascination with Srixon golf clubs, Cleveland/Srixon made the club lines available only in the Japanese market, and it felt like I was late to the party.  Much to my delight, Srixon golf clubs have been reintroduced to the American market and I had the opportunity to test the new Z H45 hybrid.  I’ve never heard anything but great things about Srixon’s forged irons, but this was the first real exposure I’ve had to the metals beyond reading comments from Srixon fan boys that swore by them.  With great excitement, I put the Srixon Z H45 into my bag for what will likely be one of my final 18 hole rounds of the year.

Srixon Z H45 Hybrid (6)

Looks

From address, the Srixon Z H45 has a plain gloss black crown with a silver face, thin pear shape, and a neutral club face.  What I really liked about the Z H45 at address was that the club didn’t have a bulky look that was borderline fairway wood, but it also wasn’t the tiny little utility heads that I’m not a big fan of.  It’s just a traditional and comfortable looking hybrid that will give you confidence over the ball.  The Z H45 also has a really nice black sole with nice contour lines and a good looking signature Srixon Z logo.

Some additional areas where I think Srixon did a great job in the aesthetics department are the new white headcovers and exclusive all red Lamkin UTx grips (which we’re big fans of at Plugged In Golf HQ).  These two components give the brand a bit more flash than we’ve seen traditionally and it fits them well.

Srixon Z H45 Hybrid (7)

Sound & Feel

A lot of attention went into the face of the Srixon Z H45 for performance purposes, but this also has an impact on the sound and feel at impact.  In the new Z H45 hybrids, Srixon used a “maraging steel cup face” which results in higher ball speeds and the variable thickness in the face for forgiveness.  When you start varying these aspects, dialing in the sound and feel of a club can become increasingly difficult, but Srixon has done a tremendous job at getting it right.

The sound at impact has a “springy” tone to it and doesn’t make everyone at the driving range turn around to see who is shooting shotguns at golf balls.  It’s a modest ping that will stay relatively consistent anywhere on the face leaving you satisfied with your shot.  The feel matches up with the sound nicely.  The Z H45 is extremely forgiving across the entire face and is surprisingly responsive.  Historically, a lot of these forgiving-feeling faces lack some response in off-center shot, but the Srixon Z H45 does this very well making for a pleasurable ball striking experience in any conditions, including brisk fall days in Chicago.

Srixon Z H45 Hybrid (4)

Performance

In the interest of cutting to the chase, I’ll just admit right away that the Srixon Z H45 has an extremely forgiving face on mishits as advertised, and I did get a little extra carry out of the club.  The stock Kuro Kage shaft is one of the better feeling stock Kuro Kages I’ve hit and seems to be a nice match for this club head.

Srixon worked to move the center of gravity lower in order to get a more penetrating launch and higher ball flight.  I don’t know about the rest of you, but my general observation amongst “non-pro” golfers is that players either hit their hybrids higher than a hot air balloon or on low piercing frozen ropes (largely due to the club build, not our swing flaws, right?).  So naturally, I’m somewhat skeptical when I see a feature like penetrating, high launching ball flight advertised and it’s the primary characteristic I’m looking for when I’m testing.  Well hats off to Srixon, because I feel like they did a pretty good job here.  I had a mid-level launch angle with a rising flight that gave me a nice high peak and a soft landing.  This proved especially beneficial on the day I brought the Z H45 out of for a round as it was especially windy and I didn’t feel like my ball was getting knocked down like I do with some other hybrids.  Especially beneficial, the Srixon Z H45 is easy to control giving you the ability to change up your shots like if you need to lower your flight if you need to burn a roller down range.

Srixon Z H45 Hybrid (9)

Conclusion

How will Cleveland’s move to re-launch Srixon as their primary club brand in America pay off?  It’s likely much too early to tell, but with great fire power behind the brand like Graeme McDowell and Keegan Bradley and delivering consistently high-quality clubs, Srixon will be fine.  If the Srixon Z H45 is an early indicator of what’s to come, Srixon is going to do well by appealing to a wide range of golfers that will not only benefit from playing their clubs, but will enjoy playing them.  I keep ending up back in a set of hybrids from about three or four years ago for various reasons, but the Srixon Z H45 has a lot of the characteristics that I love about my current set.  Well done, Srixon, you have my attention.  I’m looking forward to seeing what’s next from you!

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Bill Bush
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