PING G v G400
Ping’s new driver takes on its predecessor. With Kit Alexander and Adam Smith.
Ping G (£ 349)
Dragonfly Technology on the crown enables the designers to move weight and increase the forgiveness and stability. Turbulators and Vortec Technology reduce drag as you swing, and it has a Variable Thickness Face made of T9S titanium. The G is a classic shape and the large profile inspires confidence behind the ball.b The turbulators frame the ball really nicely,n too. The black weight in the back of thet sole is very subtle. Pro tester Adam Smith averaged 260 yards with a solid smash factor of 1.45 – how efficiently the clubhead turned swing speed into ball speed off the face. Seven-handicapper Kit Alexander averaged 266 yards with a smash factor of 1.39. The G is known as one of the more forgiving drivers of its generation, thanks to its head weighting and generous hitting area, and the stats backed this up. Adam didn’t dip below a 1.42 smash factor during testing, while backspin stayed in the 2,300-3,300rpm range. Kit also produced reasonably consistent results. It has a louder sound than most recent drivers that is reminiscent of the titanium clubheads that were common a few years ago. This contributes to a feel at the more solid and understated end of the spectrum. Ping G400 (£ 389) A Tungsten back weight contributes to the deepest CG location of any driver on the market. The forged T9S+ face flexes 16% more at impact. The Dragonflfly Technology has been enhanced and the clubhead has been made even more streamlined. The clubhead looks more compact than the G at address with the turbulators noticeably wider. The sole artwork is simpler but the copper tungsten weight stands out a lot more. The shaft looks copper when held up but appears black at address. Both testers hit the G400 slightly longer – Adam at 262 yards and Kit at 267 yards. Adam achieved this with a slightly higher smash factor and 300rpm more spin, while Kit had the same smash factor with a slightly higher launch and 150rpm more spin. Adam’s smash factor was 1.47 or greater for all but one shot and he hit a couple that he was convinced would leak right and short but stayed pretty straight and impressively long. Kit’s shots all finished within a 15-yard range from longest to shortest. The sound has been significantly improved. It’s now more similar to other composite clubheads and not as harsh. The face feels livelier, too – fantastic out the middle and like it still maintains ball speeds on off-centre hits.