Wilson might not get as much attention in the golf world these days as other manufacturers, but when it comes to creating irons this is a company that delivers year after year and is on top of its game.
Also of note, having created Feel, Crossover, and Distance categories for its irons, Wilson does a great job of steering players in the right direction to find a set of irons that will suit their needs.
More specifically, Feel or F-category irons are typically designed for better players, Crossover or C-category irons will fit a wide array of players ranging from low- to high-handicappers, and Distance or D-category irons are game-improvement irons that will best suit higher-handicap golfers.
In its current lineup, Wilson has excellent options in every category, including the Staff C200 irons, as well as two brand new additions in the Staff FG Tour V6 irons and the Staff D300 irons.
Here’s a closer look at each of those models:
Wilson has done a great job with all of its irons through the years but its reputation was built on classic, forged players irons.
The FG Tour V6 is another in a long line of clubs that falls into that category, and it was designed with the best players in the world in mind.
“With this iron, it started off with we have to make our tour players happy,” said Michael Vrska, Wilson Golf Global Director of Innovation. “Padraig Harrington already won with these. We have numerous sets in play on tours around the world.
“This is a forged golf club; 8620 carbon steel, nickel chrome plating, all that you’d expect in a Wilson Staff classic forged iron but with some real technology in it.”
Leading the way in terms of technology is the use of tungsten weighting in the long and mid irons. In the long irons, 20 grams of tungsten is utilized in the heel and the toe, while in the mid irons that weight is positioned in the center of the sole. In both cases, the result is a lower center of gravity and more forgiveness on off-center strikes.
That is not, however, the only way in which Wilson engineers used weight to create a more forgiving iron.
“(There is) a lot of mass right behind the impact area, almost 40 grams in fact, which allows that workability but still a little bit of forgiveness,” Vrska said. “Most importantly, you understand, hey I toe’d it a little bit, I heel’d it a little bit, so the players get that feedback but don’t have massive misses on those swings.”
While golfers will certainly appreciate the improved playability that comes with the V6’s enhanced forgiveness, this is still unmistakably a players iron, which is readily apparent when looking at its thin topline, compact blade shape, and lack of offset. It also excels in terms of control and workability.
Still, it’s an iron that can be played by more than just elite ball-strikers.
“This is certainly geared toward the better players in the world and low-handicappers, (but) there’s no reason why an 8 or a 10, especially somebody who’s willing to practice and aspires to get their handicap lower (can’t play this iron),” Vrska said. “It could be a great option for them.”
Staff FG Tour V6 irons are offered in a set configuration of 4-GW, and they come standard with True Temper Dynamic Gold steel shafts and Lampkin Crossline grips.
Also brand new to the Wilson lineup are Staff D300 irons, which are giving players explosive distance, impressive forgiveness, and naturally high launch conditions.
“This (iron) is all about forgiveness with great distance and power,” Vrska said. “A little bit thicker topline, really confidence inspiring at address, a little bit wider sole, a little more camber and bounce to really help that player who may struggle with fat and thin shots.”
While this is a true game-improvement offering, this iron offers better feel than many of its competitors thanks to Wilson’s FLX Face Technology, which Vrska discussed in greater detail.
“FLX Face Technology is limited contact points between the face and the body,” said Vrska. “And part of that is what we call power holes. Those are literal holes that go all the way through and all the way around the head.
“That combination of FLX Face and power holes literally gives room for the face to give and flex at impact. What gets filled in those power holes is actually TE031 Urethane. That’s a very soft material that gives so you still get that rebound, that great ball velocity, but incredible feel.”
Also noteworthy from a technological standpoint and adding to the forgiveness that the D300 irons offer are weight pods that have been positioned at the heel and toe. And by pushing mass to the perimeter of the clubhead, MOI is increased.
The two stock shafts for the D300 irons, which come in a set configuration of 4-GW, are KBS Tour 80 steel shafts and Matrix Speed Rulz A-type graphite shafts, while the Wilson Staff Tour Traction is the stock grip.
Staff D300 irons are also available for women (5-SW) and come standard with UST Mamiya SL 50 graphite shafts and Wilson Staff Ladies Winn grips.
Currently available in the Crossover category are the C200 irons, which would unquestionably rank as the most versatile iron in the current Wilson lineup.
The C200 would probably fall into the game-improvement category in the eyes of most, especially given how forgiving they are and the impressive distance numbers they generate, but this is an iron that also has players club attributes.
“A little bit thinner topline, a little bit thinner sole, a little bit shorter blade length,” said Vrska in describing the C200. “Interestingly, we have a number of these in play in the long irons on the PGA Tour.”
In addition to the smaller, compact profile that the C200 irons offer in comparison to many game-improvement offerings, they also provide exceptional feel thanks to the use of Wilson’s aforementioned FLX Face Technology.
Most notably, the utilization of TE031 Urethane to fill the power holes in the clubhead creates the softer feel than one might expect, as well as crisp acoustics at impact.
“The performance I got was so impressive in terms of the ball flight but especially in terms of the feel,” said TGW staff writer Chris Wallace after testing the C200 irons. “Even though that’s a cast club, the feel was like a forged club.”
Wilson C200 irons (4-GW) are offered with stock shafts from KBS (Tour 90) and Aldila (Pro 60) in steel and graphite, respectively, and come standard with Lampkin Crossline grips.