First test! G v G400 irons
Do they fulfill the design brief? We found out
Ping’s game improvement G irons have earnt a deserved reputation as being just about the most club golfer-friendly irons available.
Since the first set (G2s) in 2004 they’ve got progressively better, so it’s no surprise that unlike some brands Ping haven’t felt the need to head back to the drawing board to redesign them for 2017. Our test pro hit both the old G and new G400 7-iron on a launch monitor so we could accurately compare both models.
Performance Fast-faced irons have been about for a few years, but Ping says only now are we seeing face flex get to the same levels as a driver. The tech asks a huge amount of a head material, as it needs to be thin enough to increase spring, feel great, yet be robust enough to withstand hitting a ball at 100mph. Thin face tech actually gives a real benefit over and above ball speed gains; thinning the face frees up weight which can be positioned to improve forgiveness. This is where G400 is so clever. Not only is weight removed from behind the face, more is scooped from the undercut top edge. Put it all together, and you get some serious ball speed and carry distance gains.
The numbers Chris saw significant gains in ball speed and carry (3mph and 13 yards) over the G – incredible when you consider G is only 18 months old. Ping aren’t saying everyone will see such gains; five yards is typical from their testing. But we saw similar gains when we travelled to Ping’s HQ in Arizona and tested with Ping Director of Product Development Marty Jertson. He picked up 6mph of ball speed and 12 yards of extra carry. That’s huge.
Sound Ping’s engineers have learnt a huge amount about sound over the years – and how important it is in convincing golfers to switch to a new model. All that knowledge has spilt over into the G400, which sounds solid, powerful and pleasing at impact, and every bit as premium as Ping’s i200 iron.
Looks G400 takes the best bits of the G and rolls them in with a better finish (hydropearl is really sleek) and with some shaping tweaks to make a very attractive iron. We’d go as far as saying this is the best looking G-model iron Ping has ever made.