Cleveland Launcher XL, XL Lite and XL Draw Drivers Review

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  • At a glance

  • TG Rating 4 out of 5
  • Owner Rating Not yet rated
  • Pros

    – Extremely forgiving with high launch

    – Far tighter disperson numbers than previous generation

    – Vast adjustability in the XL model

    – Huge amounts of tech for the prices

    – Excellent left-hand availability

  • Cons

    – Counterbalancing in the grip won't suit everyone and removal only available through custom-fitting

    – XL Lite and Draw Models aren't adjustable

    – Only one women's model

  • RRP £379.00

What we say...

Cleveland Golf’s XL driver range is the brand’s most-forgiving ever.

Cleveland’s new uber-forgiving Launcher XL driver more than lives up to its name. The three models –  XL, Lite and Lite Draw – are 6.7% longer front to back and feature an 11% increase in MOI compared to the previous generation Launcher.

The three Cleveland Golf Launcher XL drivers.

The head design features an MOI of 5,200g-cm² – the most ever in a Cleveland driver – which combines with low-and-deep weighting.

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But what does that mean for you, the user? Cleveland say the added MOI delivers more forgiveness with a higher launch and provides a 27% tighter dispersion area when compared against the previous generation of Launcher driver.

The Cleveland Launcher XL drivers have a rebound face.

A new ‘Rebound Frame’ creates alternating areas of flexibility and rigidity with the aim of directing more energy into the golf ball across the face for longer drives. There’s also an eight gram weight inside the end of the grip, designed to to create better balance for more control.

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Cleveland Launcher XL drivers review: How the models differ

The Cleveland Launcher XL driver is the only adjustable model in the range.

Cleveland XL Driver

RRP £379 | Launched February 2022
Lofts 9°, 10.5°, 12° | Adjustable hosel Yes (0.5º increments, 12 settings) | Women’s? No | Left hand? Yes (Custom-fit only in 9º and 12º) | Stock shaft Project X Cypher 50 | Stock Grip Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360 (52g, 58 round)

All three drivers feature all of the tech we’ve mentioned above but The XL is the only one of the three models to feature adjustable hosel, which allows golfers to optimise their launch angle, distance, and shot shape with up to 12 different loft positions.

Verdict: Cleveland Launcher XL driver

On the surface it might seem a little unfair to put the Launcher XL which is designed exclusively for club golfers in the hands of our test pro. We did however deck the model out with a Project X HZRDUS Smoke shaft that was more suited to our pro’s swing speed and launch conditions before testing commenced.

We’re a little gutted the XL’s numbers aren’t slightly better as the model is a lovely friendly big dog, and a model that tons of either new players or club golfers will be suited too. We love how the driver sits at address, there’s a big but not offensive appearance and a very square face angle, which reasonable golfers will really appreciate.

For golfers that don’t want to spend time getting fitted, and players that are less worried about their gear and more focused on just getting out and having fun on the golf course, you really should have a look at the Launcher XL family in 2022.  

How the Cleveland Launcher XL driver comapres to other forgiving drivers in data (shots hit by TG test pro Neil Wain).       

The Cleveland Launcher XL driver
The Cleveland Launcher XL Lite driver

Cleveland XL Lite Driver

RRP £309 | Launched February 2022
Lofts 10.5°, 12° | Adjustable hosel No | Women’s? Yes (12º) | Left hand? Yes (Custom-fit only in 10.5º and women’s) | Stock shaft Men’s Project X Cypher 40 (48g A, 48g R, 50g S); Women’s Project X Cypher 40 (L) | Stock Grip Men’s Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360 52g, 58 round; Women’s Winn Dri Tac Ladies (35g, 59 round)

The XL Lite model is for those players looking to add speed to their swing. The Lite features the same XL head design and Rebound Frame structure and combines it with a new ‘Lite-Weight’ design.

It helps moderate swing speed players increase their speed by saving 12g of weight compared to the standard Launcher XL Driver, while maintaining maximum forgiveness.

Verdict: Cleveland Launcher XL Lite driver

It’s been a while since we’ve had a Cleveland amongst our favourite drivers, particularly as the brand nowadays works on two-year product life cycles. Although we appreciate in theory equipment aimed at club golfers should be tested by club golfers, we’ve seen how using amateurs can lead to analysing how a golfer performs with each product, and not give an accurate picture of how products actually perform.

Examine our test data below and you’ll discover the Launcher XL Lite is not amongst our fastest or longest models and that’s because we reckon the club didn’t quite fit our tester. Which of course does not mean the XL will not be an excellent driver choice for some players. TG Equipment Editor Simon Daddow loved how the head sat at address, there’s no whiff of a closed face angle, it’s a driver he enjoyed hitting and felt he hit particularly well. Even if our results don’t quite tell the same story.

We reckon for golfers who’ve got a repeatable rhythmical golf swing that’s under 90mph along with a reasonably consistent impact location the XL Lite could well be a top-drawer performer, for very sensible money. You will of course need to like the feel of slightly lighter golf clubs (if you don’t Cleveland also have the similarly shaped standard Launcher XL), which means this model won’t suit everyone’s needs. If though you like the idea of going lighter but often slice your drives right of the target (for a right-handed golfer) there’s a Launcher XL Lite Draw too.         

How the Cleveland Launcher XL Lite compares to other draw drivers in data (shots hit by TG Equipment Editor Simon Daddow). The highlighted red Ping G400 SFT was Simon’s gamer driver when testing took place.

Cleveland Launcher XL Lite driver data
The Cleveland Launcher XL driver.

Cleveland XL Lite Draw Driver

RRP £309Launched February 2022
Loft 
10.5° | Adjustable No | Women’s? No | Left hand? Yes | Stock shaft Project X Cypher 40 (48g A, 48g R, 50g S) | Stock Grip Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360 (52g, 58 round)

Packed with the same tech as the XL and XL Lite, the XL Lite Draw targets those players who are fighting a slice by using an offset design that helps to take the right-hand side of the course out of play.

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Cleveland Launcher XL Drivers: Key Technology 

The Cleveland Golf Launcher XL drivers are 6.7% longer than the previous generation.

XL Head Design

The Launcher XL Driver heads are 6.7% longer front to back when compared to the  previous generation Launcher and feature an MOI of 5,200 g*cm² – the most ever in a Cleveland Golf driver. Combine this new design with low-and-deep weighting for maximum forgiveness with a high launch.

cleveland-launcher-xl-drivers-3.jpg

Rebound Frame

Alternating zones of flexibility and rigidity direct more energy into the golf ball for increased speed and distance on every shot.

The Cleveland Launcher XL drivers use Action Mass CB – an 8g weight in the grip to help counter-balance the club.

Action Mass CB

An 8g weight placed inside the end of the grip delivers better balance for more control without extra effort.

The Cleveland Launcher XL driver.

What Cleveland Golf say about the Launcher XL Drivers

“The Launcher XL drivers hit the ball long and straight – plain and simple,” Joe Miller, European Product Manager at Cleveland Golf, said. “This is the most forgiving driver line we’ve ever made. More than anything, you’re going to see straighter drives more often.

“We’re introducing a standard model with adjustable loft and lie settings, a lite model that’s longer and faster, and a draw model that corrects for a slice. There’s something for all game improvement players with Launcher XL.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Rob Jerram is Today's Golfer's Digital Editor.


Rob Jerram is the Digital Editor of todaysgolfer.co.uk
He has been a journalist for more than 20 years, starting his career with Johnston Press where he covered local and regional news and sport in a variety of editorial roles across ten years.
Rob joined Bauer Media in 2010 and worked as the Senior Production Editor of Today’s Golfer and Golf World magazines for ten years before moving into the Digital Editor’s role in July 2020.
He has been playing golf for almost three decades and has been a member at Greetham Valley Golf Club in Rutland for eight years, playing off 12.

      

Product Information

Cleveland Golf Launcher XL drivers

Cleveland XL Driver

RRP £379
Launched February 2022
Lofts 9°, 10.5°, 12°
Adjustable hosel Yes (0.5º increments, 12 settings)
Women's? No
Left hand? Yes (Custom-fit only in 9º and 12º)
Stock shaft Project X Cypher 50
Stock Grip Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360 (52g, 58 round)

Cleveland XL Lite Driver

RRP £309
Launched February 2022
Lofts 10.5°, 12°
Adjustable hosel No
Women's? Yes (12º)
Left hand? Yes (Custom-fit only in 10.5º and women's)
Stock shaft Men's Project X Cypher 40 (48g A, 48g R, 50g S); Women's Project X Cypher 40 (L)
Stock Grip Men's Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360 52g, 58 round; Women's Winn Dri Tac Ladies (35g, 59 round)

Cleveland XL Lite Draw Driver

RRP £309
Launched February 2022
Loft 10.5°
Adjustable No
Women's? No
Left hand? Yes
Stock shaft Project X Cypher 40 (48g A, 48g R, 50g S)
Stock Grip Golf Pride Tour Velvet 360 (52g, 58 round)

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