50 Words or Less
The Tour Edge Hot Launch C523 and E523 hybrids are solid performers – easy to hit with both distance and forgiveness. Each model is distinctive in terms of looks and target golfer. Stand out price.
Zack hit the nail on the head for the Hot Launch brand in the opener of his review of the C523 and E523 drivers [check it out HERE] with “the most value-driven golf clubs in the industry.” I realize that’s a teaser, but I encourage you to hold off looking at the price until the end of the review. And just like the 523 drivers, Tour Edge offers both the “C” and “E” models in their Hot Launch 523 hybrids.
For readers that aren’t familiar with the Hot Launch line, “C” refers to Competition – aligned with the game improvement category – and “E” to Extreme – the more super-game improvement version. I’ll differentiate and evaluate both in the sections below.
Tour Edge made it easy to identify each 523 Hot Launch hybrid. At address, the E523 (above, left) has offset and a rounded head, while the C523 is toe-centric pear shaped. Both heads are large, yet appropriate for their categories.
Looking at the soles sides by side, the size difference in the two heads is more apparent. Both hybrids have a lot of technical features exposed, yet the designers did a nice job at keeping the soles from looking too busy. The knit headcovers look sharp in the bag.
Face on, both Hot Launch 523 hybrids are again unique. While the C523 (below, top) has a traditional silhouette, the E523 face is thinner towards the heel and toe, creating a distinctive look. The white paint fill really pops on the dark faces.
Sound & Feel
The Hot Launch C523 hybrid produced a crisp metallic ‘bink’ that was fairly consistent across the face. The E523 hybrid sound was a bit deeper and slightly louder. For both clubs, feedback to my hands was minimal. If you enjoy the feel of a solid strike more than the need for feedback, these 2023 Hot Launch hybrids are sure to please.
I found three common traits between the two Tour Edge Hot Launch 523 hybrids: easy launch, good distance, and excellent forgiveness. That’s a desirable trio for most golfers. And while the face design and shafts are the same for both models (more on the face in a moment), the other design features are distinctly different.
The Hot Launch C523 achieves its easy launch by placing weight in the trailing edge of the sole. I loved looking up to see balls flying high and straight – my preferred flight – towards the green. For more ball speed and resultant distance, Tour Edge increased face flex by nearly doubling the size of the Power Channel. I attribute the excellent forgiveness I observed to the channel running the full length of the face.
Along with the offset I mentioned earlier, Tour Edge placed weight in the heel of the Hot Launch E523 to add to a slice fighting-design. The right to left ball flight wasn’t drastic, and like any club, it won’t cure a nasty slice. The other design feature specific to the E523 model is the Houdini Sole. This reduces turf interaction by 35% according to Tour Edge. I really enjoyed how my thin strikes still got up in the air with near normal carry.
I’ll close out this section with a quick highlight of the proven Diamond Face VFT Technology that’s hidden behind the face. Comprised of 39 diamond shapes with varying thicknesses, the segments act like mini-trampolines promoting faster ball speeds, reduced spin and more forgiveness on off-center hits. It’s the same tech that Tour Edge uses in their Hot Launch drivers and fairway woods [review HERE]. If you want to learn more about this technology, or any I’ve discussed, visit the Tour Edge Website – it’s one of the best in the golf space for illustrations.
The Hot Launch 523 series is the 7th iteration on the value side of the Tour Edge family. Both Tour Edge Hot Launch C523 and E523 hybrids were super easy to hit and offered a great balance of distance and forgiveness. The Hot Launch C523 hybrid has a more traditional look and neutral setup. In contrast, the E523 has the hallmarks of a slice fighting design – an offset hosel and heel weighting. If you haven’t glanced at the price in the spec chart below, now’s the time. You’ll see the Hot Launch C523 and E523 hybrids are among the most affordable hybrids available.