27 Sep 2022

The PXG Iron Battle – GEN5 and XCOR2 are packed with similar tech but is the price gap worth it?

The latest PXG GEN5 and XCOR 2 sets are packed with similar tech but aimed at two different sectors of the market, but is the price gap worth it?

For the past three months I’ve had two sets of PXG irons in play. The latest GEN5 ‘P’ and the XCOR2. Both have a similar profile, with a thick top line and offset, designed with performance and forgiveness in mind. The settings from the factory in Arizona were both the same with Steel-Fiber i95 shafts and one-degree stronger lofts.

Both irons share the latest light weight saving XCOR 2 polymer core which PXG designed specifically for the Gen 5 irons.  The mass has therefore been repositioned low and to the perimeter of the back of the clubhead increasing the MOI and forgiveness. When paired with the ultra thin face and Speed Frame technology the increase in noticeable compared to previous irons.

Gen5 Test

First off, the unique two tone look appealed to me, as they are different and that is something PXG do best. The ‘P’ head is a little bulky but builds confidence when you are over the ball. The tungsten weighting is very effective and not only makes the club very forgiving on  off-centre strikes but the low centre of gravity makes these launch the ball higher than most irons, which is why I strengthened them by one degree in order to control the trajectory.

Pros

Looks, forged feel quality, forgiveness and slight increase in ball speed

Cons

The very strong lofts produces low spin rates, making it hard to hold fast greens.

Verdict

Make sure you get fitted as gaping is a huge issue and don’t focus on total distance too much. We had a rogue 6 iron which has a loft of 18 degrees, which the equivalent to a traditional 2 iron! The 5 iron was 25 degrees, similar to a traditional 3 iron loft. The 6 iron went just as far as the PXG 19 degree hybrid! Getting fitted on the range not a simulator is essential so you can see how the ball rolls out. These are a great club but I wish I had not strengthened them by one degree and I should have got each club fitted accordingly.

XCOR2 Test

At half the price of the GEN5 you would expect these to feel inferior. They look cheaper with the chrome sticker and the feed back  through the hands makes them feel a little dead in comparison. But out on the course I scored better with the XCOR2 over the GEN5 P. They were just as forgiving but the lofts and higher spin rates provided more control with approach shots. The 6 iron measured 25 degrees and the five iron at 21 degrees. Still very strong lofts but the low centre of gravity meant they launched similar to a traditional loft iron but with reduced spin but the finish and forged feel of the GEN5 was superior.

Pros

Price and performance

Cons

Looks and  just one head shape.

Verdict

For a mid-handicapper that doesn’t have money to burn, these are worth considering. Opt for the anti glare black finish if you are playing in the Middle East,t plus you lose the shiny chrome  decals on the back of the clubhead!

Conclusion

I wish I’d opted for the T model in the GEN5 as I found the ‘P’ top line a little too thick and the offset too great. This meant there wasn’t much of a discrepancy between the XCOR2 when it came to the long-term test. It also highlighted the importance of getting the lofts checked on all your irons and how that effects your game on the course. Busting a 6 iron 230 yards might sound great over a beer with your friends but not so great when trying to hold a green with trouble through the back. Needless to say that I’ve gone back to my trusty PXG 0211 ST irons. They are not as forgiving or as long as the GEN5 P or XCOR2 but they suit my eye better and that’s half the battle when it comes to selecting irons. It’s not all about the numbers!

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