Finding the best driver for mid-handicappers is critical for success on the golf course, but if you are newer to the game, you might not understand what that means or why it matters.
In golf, a handicap is a representation of your ability based on previous rounds you played. Handicaps allow you to compare your performance with other golfers, so mid-handicap golfers fall around the middle of the pack.
Drivers are workhorses that need to deliver, especially for low and mid-handicappers, so we dedicated a lot of time to researching and experimenting with different clubs. Then, we channeled all of that work and effort into this list of the best golf drivers for mid-handicappers.
Why Do You Need the Right Mid-handicapper Driver?
It helps to understand the different tiers to figure out where you fit in the golfing hierarchy.
- Low-handicap golfers are the most skilled players, typically shooting somewhere in the 70s.
- Mid-handicappers usually have a handicap between 10 and 20 with scores in the lower 80s up to the mid-90s.
- Golfers with high handicaps are those of 20 or more and shoot in the upper 90s or higher each round.
If you fall into the mid-handicappers category, it typically means you have some issues with consistency. Some parts of your game might need work, like your initial drive off the tee. Having a weak or ineffective tee shot means you take more strokes to reach the green.
The best drivers for mid-handicappers can improve your golf game in several ways. Manufacturers consider the struggles of mid-handicappers and try to offset them with design enhancements. For example, they might make a lighter or more aerodynamic club to support your swing and give your shot an extra boost.
If you want to decrease your handicap, you’ll need a driver that gives you extra power and distance. Of course, having the highest-quality tools does not make up for technical issues, but it can be a start towards helping you improve your score. So what are the best drivers for mid-handicappers?
Best Golf Drivers for Mid-Handicappers
While some people argue that golfers should be able to use any club, these are the four picks that we believe are just right for mid-handicappers. Having the appropriate driver will improve your drive in much the same way that an indoor putting mat trains your short game.
We’ve included drivers from several companies and in various price ranges, so there’s something on our list for every mid-handicapper.
1. Callaway Golf Epic MAX LS
The Epic MAX LS Driver from Callaway Golf has the most balanced approach of all the entries on this list. It doesn’t reduce spin as much as some other clubs marketed for mid-handicappers, but it still allows golfers to increase their tee distance.
Callaway’s Epic MAX LS weighs 13 grams, making it one of the lightest clubs we tested and ideal for more novice golfers. We noticed it mostly hit straight while we were taking cuts with it, though some golfers noticed a mild fade out of the box.
The club’s titanium face gave us swift ball speeds. Although it doesn’t have the spin of clubs for advanced golfers, there is still enough on it to make the Epic MAX LS better than other clubs in this range. Overall, this is an excellent choice for golfers who are not afraid of spin in their long-distance game.
Bottom line: Callaway Golf’s Epic MAX LS Driver gives you more spin than similar models while still being versatile enough for mid-handicappers.
2. TaylorMade Stealth Plus+ Driver
Featuring unparalleled quality, the Stealth Plus+ from TaylorMade is about as luxurious a club as you can get. We found the Stealth Plus+ gave us a mammoth increase in our tee distance during testing, as much as 60 yards at times.
TaylorMade had golfers with fast swings in mind when they designed the Stealth Plus+. The club is made of lightweight carbon, and the face features a switch that allows you to adjust the loft and lie.
One thing we noticed during testing was that it gave us a low launch angle and little spin. But the ball came off the tee with the best speed of any model we tried, and the distance was unmatched. TaylorMade’s Stealth Plus+ is on the pricey side, as far as modern drivers go, and may not suit every golfer. Still, few drivers compare to this beauty.
Bottom line: The TaylorMade Stealth Plus+ Driver is a premium product – and is priced like one – but it’s a worthy addition to any golfer’s arsenal. Few clubs will give you as much extra distance on long drives.
3. Cobra Golf F9 Speedback Fairway
The F9 Speedback Fairway by Cobra Golf may not have the same modern technology and design as other clubs on this list, but it remains one of the best golf drivers for mid-handicappers. Cobra engineered the F9 to offer a little forgiveness for mid-handicap golfers who tend to hit lower on the ball.
Adjustability is the name of the game with the F9 Speedback Fairway. The head has adjustable weights allowing you to customize the ball flight off the tee. Additionally, Cobra designed the loft to be adjustable. This lets you hone the club to your swing speed and gives you the launch angles and tee distance necessary to lower your handicap.
You can even get feedback on your performance with the Cobra Connect app. It will tell you how the club performs with your adjustments and makes suggestions to fix your drive distance.
you how the club performs with the various adjustments you make and makes suggestions to fix your drive distance.
Bottom line: This highly customizable and forgiving driver can improve the tee distance for any beginner or intermediate golfer.
4. TaylorMade SiM 2 Max Driver
Another excellent driver from TaylorMade, the SiM 2 Max has incredible drive and is easier to use than other clubs in the company’s lineup. The brand is synonymous with drive distance, and that’s exactly what we found with this model, as it impressed us with its launch speed off the tee. TaylorMade used a larger head and forced ring construction to make the SiM 2 Max more comfortable and functional for beginners. The unique design provides a larger surface for a better chance to strike the ball squarely and delivers a higher launch to send the ball farther. The head of this driver was constructed using TaylorMade’s proprietary SiM Inertia Generator technology. According to TaylorMade, this feature gives you higher head speed when taking your shot. They also designed the head with split mass weighting to be more forgiving, which is ideal when you are learning how best to hit the ball off the tee.
Bottom line: Perfect for new golfers, this relatively expensive club has an easy-to-use, high-tech design that delivers a high launch speed.
Things To Consider
Buying a new driver is an important decision for any golfer because it represents an investment in your game. You need to understand four critical factors that determine the best golf drivers for mid-handicappers:
- Head size
Start by figuring out your swing speed before determining what loft and shaft to purchase. Golfers with slower swing speeds will benefit most from clubs with higher loft.
If you have a fast swing, you are likely a scratch golfer and need an extra stiff shaft. Players with slower swing speeds may want to consider more flexible shafts, as it gives you extra speed off the tee.
Less-experienced players will gain from having a more forgiving club with a larger head. However, these drivers can be less consistent than clubs with smaller heads.
Finally, mid-handicappers may appreciate a club with customization options. Since your game can fluctuate from day to day, being able to adjust your club to deal with those inconsistencies is critical for success on the course.
The right driver can make a significant difference for tee shots, but it’s just one of the many factors that make up your game. Improving your drive distance is as much about technique as it is technology, so stay patient, work with experienced golfers, and take some time each day to improve your golf game at home.
That wraps up our list of the best golf drivers for mid-handicappers. Did you find one that works for you? Do you have another driver that you would recommend instead? Let us know what you think in the comments.
Frequently Asked Questions
We will look at a few common questions players have when it comes to mid-handicap drivers and ways to improve their golf game.
What is considered a mid handicap?
While there is no set definition for a mid handicap, many golfers consider an average score in the mid-to-high 80s or low 90s to be a mid handicap. Golfers who consistently shoot in the low 80s or below may consider themselves to have a low handicap.
How often should you buy a new driver?
If you play an average of 30 rounds per year, it’s a good rule of thumb to replace your driver every five years.
What is the best driver for a mid-handicap?
Though each player will have their own preferences that determine the best golf driver, the TaylorMade Stealth Plus+ Driver gives mid-handicappers an excellent improvement in their tee distance and can shave strokes off your golf game.