Callaway Steelhead XR Irons Review



Callaway’s new Steelhead XR irons are a throwback to the sleek, classic design of the Steelhead X-14 of yesteryear. This fresh take on a classic design combines both playability and ability to shape your shot which could make the Steelhead XR irons one of the most popular set of sticks on the market.

The new Steelhead XR irons posses the Next-Generation 360 Cup Face, a technology that helps to generate even more ball speed than previous models and helps promote a higher launch angle. The Steelhead XR irons also have a new Steel-Infused Polyurethane Insert. This serves two separate functions: absorb unwanted vibration to enhance feel and to add weight, lowering the clubs center of gravity, promoting higher ball speeds and launch angles on those mis-hits low on the face. The newly placed Center of Gravity in the Steelhead XR irons allows for a more consistent launch, which leads to more control. All of this new technology makes the Steelhead XR irons more forgiving where you need it…while still having maximum playability!


To test the Steelhead XR irons, we compared them to Callaway’s XR iron, which is the preceding game improvement iron from Callaway.

Our test golfer in this case, is a single digit handicap player, who normally plays a draw. For both the Steelhead XR and XR, we used a Project X 6.0 Shaft at standard length with standard lie.

The first thing that stood out to us was the tighter dispersion from the Steelhead XR. Every shot with the Steelhead XR, even mishits were a consistent draw that ended up within just a few yards of each other. We did not see the same forgiveness from the XR, which struggled to draw with mishits.

You can see the dispersion difference in the Trackman report below between the Steelhead XR (white) and XR (yellow).

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Once we looked at the numbers a little more in-depth, we found some glaring differences.

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Particularly, the differences in the carry yardage were remarkable. The Steelhead XR carried about 9 yards farther than the XR (174 yards vs. 165 yards). The Steelhead XR also got nearly 5 mph more ball speed (120 mph vs. 115 mph). The new Steel-Infused Polyurethane Insert in the Steelhead XR, which lowers the Center of Gravity, appears to also positively impact the overall height achieved with the Steelhead XR being about 11 feet higher at peak height than the XR (90 feet vs. 79 feet).


We were extremely impressed with how well the Steelhead XR tested in almost every aspect. Callaway’s new Steelhead XR irons are a throwback to a classic iron. They’re packed to the brim with brand new technology that should have every golfer chomping at the bit to demo these incredible new irons.

And be sure to stop by a Golf Exchange nearest you from Sep. 2-5 to take part in our Callaway Steelhead XR Challenge for your chance to win a FREE Callaway golf bag!



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