Wilson Staff FG Tour V4 Utility Iron Review

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50 Words or Less

The Wilson Staff FG Tour V4 Utility Iron gives better players another option for filling out the top end of their bag.  Great stock shaft and weight adjustability.

Introduction

For an OEM, releasing a new product to your tour staff can be a nervous experience.  “Tour validation” is such a huge part of success in the golf industry, that you need your pros playing the newest club if you expect it to sell.  Wilson Staff’s nerves about the Wilson Staff FG Tour V4 Utility Iron were short-lived: their staff snatched up every one the first day it was available on tour.

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Looks

At address, the Wilson Staff FG Tour V4 Utility Iron has a clean look similar to a high-quality game improvement iron.  The top line has a little size to it and there is some offset, but it’s all well shaped to maintain visual appeal.  The sole of the club does stick out a bit beyond the top line at address, but that can change depending on your ball position and set up.

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Sound & Feel

I was a little surprised by how firm the feel of the Wilson Staff FG Tour V4 Utility Iron is.  Having played Wilson Staff irons in the past, I was expecting something much closer to their forged clubs, but this feels more like their game-improvement clubs: firm and hot.

The sound does provide excellent feedback.  Shots away from the center sound rather dull, but pure hits are very crisp and satisfying.

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Performance

While hybrids are great, particularly for players who need a lot of forgiveness, there’s a reason that utility irons have made a comeback with better players in the last couple years: they offer forgiveness without taking away ball control.  The Wilson Staff FG Tour V4 Utility Iron is a perfect example of that.

The first thing I noticed when testing this club is that it launched, on average, 2 degrees higher than a similarly-lofted iron.  As a low-ball hitter, that’s exactly what I needed from this club to maximize distance and get the ball to stop on the greens.  If you want to go for even higher launch, Wilson has put a weight port in the sole where you can swap in an even heavier weight.

Beyond the higher launch, the FG Tour V4 Utility Iron is also more forgiving than your standard long iron.  Mishits are still mishits – toe and heel shots aren’t going to magically find the hole – but they did get higher in the air and farther down range than I had any right to expect.

Finally, I want to credit Wilson for their choice of stock shaft.  This club features a 90 gram Kuro Kage graphite shaft which is not too heavy to create club head speed, but it’s also not so light that stronger players will lose control.  Additionally, the graphite helps to absorb some of the shock of mishits and launch the ball a little higher.

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Conclusion

The Wilson Staff FG Tour V4 Utility Iron got instant approval on the PGA Tour, and it’s not hard to see why: it’s a great compromise between tough-to-hit long irons and hard-to-control hybrids.  While this club still requires good ball striking skills, it forgives mishits much more readily than a standard 4-iron without sacrificing the ball control better players want.

Matt Saternus
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8 Comments

  1. Matt,
    Do you have an opinion about why the Wilson Staff brand seems so lightly regarded among serious golfers? Of my 10 or so golf playing friends, I am the only one using WS clubs. One or two like using the Elite 50 or Duo balls, but I have never heard any of them discuss even considering WS for other equipment. Online reviews of their recent offerings have been tremendous and you had high praise for the D200 driver and the tour irons. So why does there seem to be no love from the regular golfing crowd? Do you think there is any correlation between WS having only a few tour pros playing their equipment and garnering a low market share with Joe Golfer?

    I’ve been playing WS Di9 irons for a few years and love them. Keep up the good work!

    • Matt Saternus

      SirShives,

      I can tell you that it has nothing to do with the equipment.

      The lack of tour presence is definitely a big part of it. Beyond that, the Wilson brand (low end box sets, etc) hurts their perception, too. Ultimately, “regular” golfers want to play what everyone else plays, so they keep won’t take a “risk” on being different and playing Wilson Staff. Their loss.

      Best,

      Matt

  2. Matt – how would you compare this to the Srixon Z U45 with regards to ease of launch and forgiveness? In your opinion will this be a good option for mid handicappers who do not like the look of hybrids?

    Thanks for another nice review.

    • Matt Saternus

      Amit,

      The biggest difference between the two is the shaft, so I think the shaft that a given player prefers will dictate how easily they can launch the ball. In terms of forgiveness they’re pretty equal.
      As for recommending these to mid-handicappers, it really depends. I think everyone should try them, but I don’t think many 14 handicap players will hit these better than a hybrid.

      -Matt

  3. With all of the driving irons out now which one of the many is the most forgiving club, I live in a golf abyss where we will never get the chance to try Srixon or the Wilson driving irons just the popular brands. Thanks

    • Matt Saternus

      Blake,

      I know that PING doesn’t want their G Crossover called a driving iron, but for forgiveness, that’s the king.

      Best,

      Matt

  4. Hi Matt,

    I know this club is getting on in age now but how would you rate it up against the likes of the titleist 716 t-mb and srixon u45 / u65? I know it’s hard to do a totally fair test without having identical shafts in them.

    I recently picked up a set of Wilson fg tour v6 irons 5 to PW and reshafted them with Nventix Nunchuk XI shafts. My plan is to pick up a 4 iron long iron replacement and reshaft with a Nunchuk.

    I know it’s very subjective but if you were looking at 4 iron replacement 24 or 23 degrees of loft what would you personally go for? The issue I have had in the past is a lot of these long iron replacements can be very chunky and do lack feel (had tried a mizuno mp h in the past and it did not suit my eye as it was so chunky and it felt hollow).

    Would the Wilson v4 utility fit the bill. I can pick one up very cheap and reahaft it easily. However i note you said it does not feel like a forged iron. Perhaps i am looking for a club that does not really exist. I did hit a srixon 565 4 iron a few months back which felt great.

    Many Thanks for your help

    Kind Regards

    Jon

    • Matt Saternus

      Jon,

      I just finished testing the Mizuno MMC FLI HI, which I found pretty impressive. I’ve also heard good things about the new Miura offering. PING’s Crossover is also good.

      Ultimately no hollow club is going to feel like a forged iron. Some get close – the MMC may be the closest – but they’re not the same. It’s a question of what you value more: feel or performance.

      Best,

      Matt

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