Titleist has not rested on the laurels it received when it introduced the AP (for Advanced Performance) irons two years ago. New versions of the two models in that line – the AP1 and the AP2 – prove that.
With the AP2, which boasts a sleek, classic look and was the No. 1 iron model on the PGA Tour the past two seasons, the equipment maker made two primary enhancements.
“First, we took a little bounce out of the sole on all clubs from 7-iron through wedge so the ball glides through the turf better,” says Chris McGinley, vice president of marketing worldwide for Titleist clubs. “We also improved feel and sound at impact by putting an integrated aluminum and soft elastomer tuning plate in the back of the cavity and used a forged carbon steel with a high-density tungsten nickel sole box to reduce low-frequency vibration.”
While the AP2 continues to be much played on the professional tours and was the No. 1 iron at the U.S. Amateur last year as well as the PGA Professional National Championship, it is also designed to appeal to serious golfers who are just as likely to shoot in the low- to mid-80s. Suggested retail cost is $142 per club in steel (the stock shaft is True Temper Dynamic Gold) and $167 in graphite.
Titleist gave the AP1 a bit more of a makeover. “The idea was to take what was already a good club but offer more forgiveness and better feel in a traditional package,” McGinley says. In addition to utilizing an aluminum and elastomer tuning plate in the back cavity of this model as well, the equipment maker reduced face thickness to promote a hotter, more lively feel and moved weighting deeper and to the heel and toe.
The result, in McGinley’s view, is a more forgiving, more finely tuned and better-looking iron whose target audience is the serious golfer, per usual, but includes those who handicaps reach into the mid-teens. Yet, it is still high-performing enough to have made it into some bags on tour.
The AP1 is a cast iron that McGinley describes as the most playable in the Titleist line. The suggested retail price is $100 per club with a steel shaft (the stock shaft here is the lightweight NS Pro 105T) and $125 graphite (Aldila VS Proto-T 75).