By: Zack Buechner
50 Words or Less
The TaylorMade SIM Max fairway wood is the most forgiving of the SIM fairway lineup and will fit more golfers than any other, despite its lack of adjustability.
The 2020 TaylorMade design team created a family of fairway woods that help launch conditions and get players improved control in the top part of their bag. Historically, TaylorMade has always been a leader in wood design across all markets but I am not entirely convinced that this is a big step forward for them from the previous M5 and M6 of 2019.
The most obvious difference between 2019 and the 2020 fairways is the change to the white accents along the crown. In 2016 when TaylorMade first released the 2-tone carbon crown, it was white and black but more recently, they have gone to grey and black. 2020 has brought back the white. The white has a cleaner, more polished look to it but still has similar lines as its predecessors. The light blue and silver colorway is a bit of a throwback to the SLDR. Fortunately, those similarities stop at the color scheme.
Sound & Feel
The C300 steel face construction has that distinct “snap” sound that we have come to associate with TaylorMade woods. A firm feel actually gives feedback so you know when you connect with one on the screws.
One thing that stood out to me with the SIM fairway woods is the balance and an ability to naturally feel the club head throughout the swing. This could be due to the shaft offered (in this case, the Fujikura Ventus Blue) as stock but either way, its a combo that TaylorMade players will find very playable.
Loaded with forgiveness using the V-Steel sole and Twist Face design, the SIM MAX fairway wood is what the majority of golfers will be fit into. It has a neutral setting, so it doesn’t have a bias towards a fade or draw player. Its also worth noting that the SIM MAX fairway wood (and the MAX-D fairway wood) are bonded and do not have an adjustable hosel. All the more reason that a proper fitting is crucial in finding the right fairway for your game.
Out of the three versions of the SIM fairways, the SIM MAX fairway wood launched the lowest with the highest spin numbers yet still gave me some strong distances. My biggest issue with this particular club was that it got way right on me too many times. My natural fade can turn into a slice any given day of the week, but the SIM MAX fairway wood definitely didn’t help my case. TaylorMade did a good job of separating the needs of each golfer and releasing clubs that can suit any style of swing. Unfortunately, the SIM MAX fairway wood isn’t best suited for my swing, but I could certainly see someone who plays a draw, or even a straight ball flight, reaping big benefits from the SIM MAX.
The most forgiving of the SIM lineup is the SIM MAX fairway wood and will likely fit the highest percentage of golfers. TaylorMade improved upon the success of the 2-tone carbon crown and Twist Face technology but the real winner here is the playability. The V-Steel sole and softer leading edge help get the club to the ball quicker with less drag which is what really shines in the SIM MAX fairway wood.