August 5, 2016
Phoenix, AZ - Through extensive research and observation of leading tour professionals, PING engineers designed the new iBlade iron for golfers who rely on the precision and control to execute the most demanding shots in the game. The blade-style iron follows the highly popular S55 model, which has amassed more than 50 wins around the world since its introduction over two years ago.
"The iBlade project was a fun challenge for our engineers," said John A. Solheim, PING Chairman and CEO. "They approached the design with the mindset of what the best players in the world demand and need from their irons. They incorporated tour player feedback and created a beautiful club that delivers amazing performance. The iBlade has a simple shape, clean cavity design and incredible feel. It's already our most-played iron on tour as players around the world have quickly converted to the new design."
The body is precision cast from soft, high strength-to-weight ratio 431 stainless steel. The result is the softest, purest feel ever in a PING iron. With the workability to shape shots on command, the compact iBlade iron head delivers consistently precise distance and trajectory control that surpass skilled players' expectations.
A thinner top rail, minimal offset, straight lead edge and sharp high toe will appeal to the eye of the discerning player. Refined bounce angles and ample heel relief, optimized with the same sole width as the S55 iron, produce a workable sole design for confident shot making from all conditions. Further precision comes from the milled tour-spec grooves and precision-machined fly-cut face.
The unprecedented feel is achieved through a combination of the soft stainless steel and a larger surface area behind the face that houses an elastomer insert. The insert is "activated" at impact, which results in more vibration damping in the player's hands and a softer feel and pleasing sound. A hydropearl chrome finish repels water for more control and helps minimize fliers from wet conditions and lies in the rough.
The engineering team ensured every club in the iBlade set delivers exceptional distance while improving overall gapping. The thin face (half the thickness of S55), yields greater ball speeds for increased distance throughout the set with higher overall trajectories and precise control.
"Consistency is the key to strong iron play, and that includes being able to hit the ball farther than before," said Solheim. "The iBlade delivers ample distance and height, but it's important that we engineer irons with control and proper gapping. We've designed this club to give skilled players the confidence to play any shot and know exactly how far the ball will go."
Forgiveness is also factored into the design. Nearly "pure" tungsten weights (netting a 70% increase in mass relative to the S55 iron) are pressed into the toe of every head to increase the MOI - a key factor in the precision of the iron.
"Even players at this level need forgiveness," added Solheim. "The iBlade continues our long-held practice to engineer every PING iron with maximum stability for its size. In this case, we used high-density tungsten in the toe which we've subtly concealed to maintain the clean head design. It has a very high MOI for an iron its size, making the iBlade our most forgiving blade-style iron to date."
The iBlade iron is available for pre-order at authorized PING golf shops around the world.