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Taylormade R1 Driver – The Ultimate Review

By on March 21, 2013

In this article we shall try and pull all the resources available so we can review and look at the TaylorMade R1 driver.

We review the product ourselves and give you are thoughts however we want to find as many reviews and opinions about this driver as possible so you have all of the information in one place.

An updated review of the latest TaylorMade Drivers can be found here.

Some of the reviews are taken from golf magazines or websites that are paid to advertise products and we need to take these reviews with a slight pinch of salt as we do not often see bad reviews written in magazines when the company involved is paying thousands of pounds each year to advertise.

We will initially run through the technical aspects of the club and we will follow this with our opinion and then other resources.

The R1 and R1 TP driver have exactly the same heads and technology within them and the only difference is the shafts. The R1 driver has a RIP phenom 55 gram shaft and the R1 TP version has the phenom TP 65 Shaft which is slightly heavier.


With this driver you only have one head however this being an adjustable driver you can have anything from an eight degree driver to a twelve degree driver and all things in between.

Face Angle Sole Plate

This feature allows for a change of plus or minus four degrees so that the player can choose from a square club face or you can open or close the face as preferred.

Weight Positions

The R1 gives you the option to adjust were the weight is positioned within the club. You can choose to have the heavier weight either on the toe or the heel of the club which will encourage either a draw or a faded stroke.

Hopefully the chart below will simplify the technologies and the small difference between the standard and TP versions

PGA Tour Professionals Using the R1

Dustin Johnson

TM Multi Images

Sergio Garcia

Brian Gay

Jason Day


Ryan Moore

Peter Hanson

Stephen Gallacher

Retief Goosen

+ many more

TaylorMade have produced an App which can be used on a mobile device and that can be found by clicking the itunes logo











We found quite a few reviews on the driver and the first we have is from GolfWRX.

They gave the driver an overall 4.5 out of 5.00 and this consisted of the following

5 stars for performance

4.5 stars for performance

5 stars for feel/sound

Summary – Unrivaled adjustability and better sound than the R11S. A low forward CG makes it lower spinning and slightly faster

Pros: The TaylorMade R1 improves on the company’s premium driver from a year ago, the R11S, offering slightly more ball speed and less spin thanks to a lower, more forward center of gravity. It’s also quieter than the ear-ringing R11S, and more forgiving on misses low on the face.

Cons: The racing stripe on the crown isn’t as bold as TaylorMade’s decision to go white, but it will still irk purists. A “real deal” stock shaft offering is absent, as is a stock shaft option over 65 grams. A new “loft sleeve” means previous TaylorMade driver sleeves won’t fit in the R1.

Bottom Line: TaylorMade has crept ahead with the R1 with more adjustability and more performance, but word is out on how golfers will receive the graphic-infused crown. Golfers upgrading from the R11S should expect to add 0.5 degrees of loft or more from their current setup, which will give them the high-launch, low-spin conditions necessary for more distance.

My Golf Spy have a review of both the R1 and RBZ stage two driver that can be found at this link

My Golf Spy




They have a lot of great pictures and this was a review done earlier in the year and is well worth a read. They seem to like the club a lot and the headline for the article is titled introducing the best driver of 2013.

With stiff competition from Nike and Callaway I’m not certain they have this award in the bag but we are quite certain it will be there or thereabouts. It’s worth a read and although they do not have a physical test to show you they make some honest and interesting points.

Todays Golfer



Todays Golfer website has a small review of the R1 driver and give an initial view upon testing. They used the GC2 launch monitor for the testing and found that the average carry for the R1 was 272 which was seven yards longer than the R11S and also when testing they found that the R1 curved much less than the R11S

In testing they also found it launched about 0.4 degrees higher than it predecessor and the only negative that they came up with was that it had a high pitched sound. (If it went longer and straighter i think I could live with a funny sound)

A review on the sand trap website noted the following

Looks – Did not like the graphics as it was not traditional and lacked class.

Performance – Easier to hit than the R9 and R11 however felt that this sort of driver is more suited to the lower handicapper or professional. Face feels quite hot. Sound was a bit dull

Conclusion – They conclude that this is a good driver for the price range and on that will be hard to beat and the looks, feel and decal are all personal taste and it appeared that this reviewer was not keen on the decal on the crown

Screen Shot 2013-03-21 at 21.20.48




The Hurricane golf blog did a test and compared the R1 with the R11S and they used a scratch golfer to hit both drivers 15 times and the best 10 shots with each driver would be counted.

The average swing speed was 1mph faster with the R1 at 107mph however the ball speed was 1mph slower. I expect this was the reason why the carry distance was actually slightly shorter with the R1 at 253 yards and the R11S was carrying 256 but we feel that due to the fact that you could dial in your loft and find the best loft and lie the R1 driver had an overall distance gain of 3 yards going 285 compared to the R11S which went 282 yards

The conclusion they came to was as follows The Final Verdict:

“I have praise for the R11S as well as the R1 driver, from a performance, feel and aesthetics level. They both did excellent. Overall, I would recommend both drivers and between the two you should be able to find one that will make sense for your price range as well as your ability.  However; I can’t say I would recommend the R1 driver if you were thinking that the head or shaft technology (material)  would hit the ball further.  The main reason I feel that R1 is going to hit the ball further than the R11S would be the ability to fine tune it more than optimize your launch angle and spin rates resulting in longer drives.”

The full review can be found here at the hurricane golf blog

We visited quite a few additional websites but it was clear that they had not hit the driver and were just stating the specifications and the manufactures blurb.

The Golf World magazine have reviewed the driver in the April 2013 edition and it was among the gold award winners (as I said with magazine reviews earlier we do not treat these reviews that seriously due to the fact that manufactures often pay to be reviewed and on this occasion they had 9 gold award drivers!!!!)

They graded on performance, Innovation, Look/Sound/Feel and demand and they gave the following to the R1 driver.

Performance 5 Stars

Innovation 4.5 Stars

Look/Sound/Feel 5 Stars

Demand 5 Stars

From what I could calculate the R1 and the Titleist 913 were coming out on top on an article they called the Hot List. All clubs in this review were listed alphabetically which was not very useful but at least all 9 manufactures can now state they have a golf award.

Probably the best review I could find was on the hackers paradise and they thoroughly went through the club performance with a fine tooth comb. An interesting point they made that last year during a three month spell 78% of drivers were white. An incredible thought that 8 out of 10 drivers being purchased were white.

THP do like the simplicity and remind us of why it is called the R1 and it is simply because it has one head and they say this is great in many ways as in a retail sense you only have one choice but it is also quite complex for Joe Bloggs to understand what is required to achieve the optimum performance and here it is vital that you take advice.

Even without a fitter TM do offer a great chart to follow and you can also follow a wide range of fitting videos on

The Hackers Paradise




When THP tested the driver they had the initial factory settings of 10 degrees and the reviewer hit some shots and with the ten degree loft had the following results

Factory Setting of 10 degrees

  • Ball Speed = 146mph
  • Launch = 8.1 Degrees
  • Back Spin = 2631 rpm
  • Carry = 212 Yards

When the reviewer adjusted the loft to 12 degrees (this was more suited due to the fact the reviewer was a lower hitter) he got the following results

  • Ball Speed = 145mph
  • Launch = 11.5 Degrees
  • Back Spin = 2598 rpm
  • Carry = 228 Yards

This just goes to show the power of being able to adjust a golf club and this is just one persons results on a given day and can easily alter on another day.

On further testing it was noted that miss hit shots that came from the top portion of the club appeared to go further than those miss hits from lower on the club which is to be expected.

The full review can be found here and it is worth a look and it is also worth having a look at THP forum as it is always interesting to see what people are saying about the club once it finds it’s way into the golf bag and is actually in play.

You will find quite a few videos on you tube about the new R1 driver but the majority are rubbish the following video from the golf dude is an independent reviewer who does not get paid by TM and will give it an honest once over

TM R1 Headcover

When you purchase this driver from thegolfshoponline you will get a head cover included (we recently heard that one of the UK’s biggest retailers actually charge for the head cover)

The Taylormade drivers are often copied and is one of the most popular fake drivers available. The TaylorMade R1 driver is not allowed to be sold on ebay and this is in the terms and conditions of a contract of any TM account holder and if you buy one on ebay it is highly likely to be a fake or from an unauthorised seller.

At the golf shop online we are an authorised taylorMade online retailer each season we are given a badge to prove that we are genuine sellers.

If you do not see this badge please do not buy it. Even if you are not going to but it from us please use an online retailer that has the badge.

You may see a seller from the USA on ebay but once you pay the postage cost and the taxes (which have to be paid to UPS or similar when they deliver the goods) the price is much more expensive.

About James Langmead

James Langmead is the golf professional at Stover Golf Club in Newton Abbot

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