First look: Ping i525 iron combines distance, feel and forgiveness

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Ping reveal i525 irons players’ distance iron, combining improved sound, feel and forgiveness with four more grooves to eliminate ‘fliers’ and preserve spin.

Not many irons survive more than two years in any brand’s line-up. But, thanks to the pandemic, Ping’s steady, 18-month product cycles have taken a hammering.

It means their first ever hollow body player’s distance iron, the i500, launched in 2018, has unwittingly become the grandfather of player’s distance irons – at four years old, it’s older than any other major iron currently on the market.

The Ping i500 was released in 2018 and is being replaced by the i525.

Ping originally had the i500’s replacement, the i525, scheduled for a big reveal last year, but thanks to delays and component shortages, the launch was pushed back to 2022. Thankfully they are now fully stocked and are ready to go full tilt at pushing the new model, which will be their only iron launch this year.

“What’s most satisfying in the i525 iron from an engineering standpoint is how our team has been able to maximise the flexing of the metal-wood-style face structure while creating a pleasing sound and feel,” said Ping President John K Solheim.

“As golfers know who’ve played this type of iron design, they often sacrificed some of the feel for more distance. That’s not the case in the i525 as we’re able to provide golfers a solid-feeling iron with the increased ball speed they need to hit longer, higher shots that hit and hold the green.

“We’re seeing some incredible results as a lot of golfers are a club stronger or more, including Tour pros who are attracted to the compact look and increased ball speed of the longer irons.”

Let’s take a closer look at the new model.

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Ping i525 irons

RRP £180 (s), £190 (g) per iron | VIEW OFFER
Availability 3-GW | Stock shafts Project X 10 or Ping AWT 2.0 (s), Ping Alta CB Slate, Alta Distanza Black 40 or UST Recoil (g)
Stock grips Golf Pride Tour Velvet/Tour Velvet Cord | 7-iron loft 30.5º | Category Players’ Distance Iron | Forgiveness rating 2.5/5 | Handicap Range 12 and below

Cast and forged

The i525s have a cast 17-4 stainless steel body and forged maraging steel face, so the model is fast and long but also feels great.

Ping say the hollow, metalwood-style design (because it has a dynamic face structure and undercut sole) has the look of a players’ iron thanks to their engineers carefully considering blade length and levels of hosel offset throughout the set.

From what we’ve seen the model is a great looking stick, with a profile not too dissimilar to the excellent but more player-focused i59. 

The Ping i525 iron has a cast stainless steel body and forged maraging steel face with four additional grooves.

Improved sound and feel

Technology has moved on in the world of hollow body irons since 2018, and if the previous i500 had a downfall, we would say it didn’t give quite the crisp sound and feel expected of a players’ iron.

Ping have taken the feedback onboard and say strategically positioned EVA polymer inside the i525 creates both the sound and feel that players desire, while also not hindering or slowing face deflection.

The Ping i525 iron has four additional grooves to help eliminate fliers in the short irons and maintain spin in the long irons.

Four more grooves

Like the i59s, the i525s have four more face grooves than the previous model. The idea is tighter grooves and a new groove geometry (with steeper side walls) which reduce the likelihood of fliers from the rough with short irons, while also preserving spin in the long irons for better control, consistency and stopping power.

Toe and heel weighting

It’s not a brand-new idea and we probably already take it for granted, but there’s a clever toe screw and shaft tip weight embedded within the i525’s design.

Just like Ping’s most recent iron launches, they nudge up MOI and forgiveness, while taking nothing away in terms of cosmetics.

The discrete weights also allow the set to be accurately weighted for custom built over- and under-length sets, as thanks to the hollow head there’s no ‘custom tuning port’ as you get in the cavity back i210.

The Ping i525 iron's toe and topline.

Choose your spec

Ping don’t just make their iron sets with just one set of lofts. Every time you buy a Ping iron you can choose to play the standard loft or opt to go 1.5° stronger (7-iron) with Power Spec, or 2° weaker with a Retro Spec set-up.

It means you get to choose whether or not you play stronger or weaker loft irons, without having any standard spec forced upon your game.

RELATED: How Ping’s G425 performed in our 2022 drivers test

How the Ping i525 iron fits into the brand's 2022 range.

Where does the i525 fit into Ping’s irons line-up?

Ping Blueprint

RRP £219 per iron | VIEW OFFER
Category Muscleback blade | 7-iron loft 34º | Forgiveness rating 1/5 | Handicap range 4 and below 

A brilliant if tiny forged muscleback blade. Created for only the very best and most consistent ball strikers, and those who insist they play their best golf by shot shaping their way around the course.

Ping i59

RRP £239 per iron | VIEW OFFER
Category Players | 7-iron loft 34º | Forgiveness rating 2 / 2.5 | Handicap range 6 and below

Ping’s excellent hollow body iron, which launched in 2021. An aluminium core removes weight, tunes sound and feel and helps control launch and spin consistency from this hot-face players’ model.

Ping i210

RRP £126 (s), £136 (g) per iron | VIEW OFFER
Category Players | 7-iron loft 33º | Forgiveness rating 2.5/5 | Handicap range 10 and below

Launched in 2018, the i210 is still Ping’s most played tour iron. The model has a traditional perimeter weighted cavity back. Plenty of elastomer tunes sound and feel to the levels requested by the likes of Lee Westwood and Tyrrell Hatton.

Ping i525

RRP £180 (s), £190 (g) per iron
Category Players’ distance | 7-iron loft 30.5º | Forgiveness rating 2.5/5 | Handicap range 12 and below

Brand new for 2022, the i525 targets decent but more distance orientated golfers. Like all Ping irons, it comes with a hydropearl finish to repel moisture and improve performance in damp grass and wet conditions.

Ping G425

RRP £129 (s), £139 (g) per iron | VIEW OFFER
Category Mid-handicap | 7-iron loft 30º | Forgiveness rating 3.5/5 | Handicap range 8 and above

Expect a deep cavity back, more compact head size and less offset in the scoring irons and super playable mid and long irons. They’re a year old, but perfect for club golfers looking for a forgiving and reliable iron that will stand the test of time.

Ping G710

RRP £180 (s), £190 (g) per iron | VIEW OFFER
Category
Distance | 7-iron loft 29.5º | Forgiveness rating 4/5 | Handicap range 28 and below 

Ping’s hollow body distance iron that targets mid to higher handicap golfers. A black PVD finish disguises the head shape and size beautifully. Having the strongest loft in the Ping iron family, at reasonable club speeds this will be the brand’s longest iron option.

The i525 is available for fitting with your nearest Ping stockist now and for delivery from March 24.

READ NEXT: Which Ping iron is right for me?

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.

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