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If you want a new 2018 driver and have budget constraints, the Tour Edge HL3 Driver may be the best bang for your buck. Just keep your performance expectations in check.
The Tour Edge Hot Launch line has a compelling message: “Get fit. Spend less. Play Better.” With no adjustability and only one stock shaft, the “Get fit” statement had me puzzled. But that middle statement should make all golfers’ ears perk up. In a world where the average new brand name driver is over $400, the HL3 is less than half the price. But is there a catch? Let’s find out.
At address, the Tour Edge HL3 Driver has a typical silhouette but lacks any distinguishing features. The metallic black crown is highly reflective and adorned with a simple round target emblem for alignment.
Face-on, the club looks very tall and parabolic in shape, instilling confidence that I don’t need the tee height to be perfect. The line between black and silver lost its crispness approaching the heel on my club, unlike what’s shown in the Tour Edge commercials and online sales photos.
The bottom of the HL3 Driver incorporates a mix of segmented finishes that add visual interest without being busy. The neon green outline suggests to me a fighter jet with its wings tucked for maximum speed. With the head cover on or off, this club looks good in the bag.
Sound & Feel
Loud. The Tour Edge HL3 Driver is the loudest wood I’ve hit, or heard hit, in recent memory. Attention grabbing on the driving range, the metallic ‘twank’ made me want to grab some ear plugs indoors at Club Champion.
The sound matched up with the feeling of producing powerful strikes. The shaft had a stiff profile throughout the swing, giving the feel that the head was ‘right there’ and not lagging in the contact zone. The club head also had a stiff feel across the face. There was some twisting on heel and toe shots but otherwise no distinguishing feel.
As often happens when a club feels different, results can be all over the place. At my first range session with the Tour Edge HL3 Driver, I hit some high, straight drives along with a fair share of doinkers. All nice and straight, but often not in the intended direction.
Things weren’t any different when I collected data at Club Champion. The numbers in the chart above don’t paint a full picture of what I experienced. As a whole, performance was down compared to my gamer and the handful of other drivers I’ve tested in the past year. I did have some very solid hits that bumped up ball speed, resulting in good carry distances.
What looks like an impressive dispersion number is actually the result of some wild misses both left and right. I can’t attribute these results to one bad testing session, as I observed distance and direction variations during several range visits.
This review of the Tour Edge HL3 turned out to be one of the more challenging for me to write. I appreciate the driver being hand built in the U.S.A. and carrying a lifetime warranty, but I can’t overlook the fact that the performance and feel weren’t great.
To answer my question from the intro, I have to conclude that the quality of materials makes a difference. The great value may be indicative of the old adage “you get what you pay for.” “Spend less” is certainly appealing, but this is one club you better try first.
**Follow-up: Tour Edge contacted me after the review was posted to clarify a few points. “Get Fit” refers to their network of over 600 locations across the country that have HL3 fit bags. Custom fit orders at these locations offer guaranteed 48 hour delivery. You can find a retailer near you on the Tour Edge website.
Buy the Tour Edge HL3 Driver HERE
Tour Edge HL3 Driver Price & Specs