Oh, what’s that? You want an honest review? Not just a reiteration of TaylorMade’s website that uses really big words to make you think this driver is the best one ever made?
OK. I think I can do that.
Here’s our honest, unbiased review of the basic TaylorMade SIM2 driver (NOT the MAX or the MAX-D models).
Performance & Appearance
Overall, yeah I guess it’s a good looking driver. At address, the TaylorMade SIM2 driver looks practically just like the original SIM driver, but with the blue “forged ring” visible. On the sole, they added a removable weight low and back on the club head, and took out the adjustable sliding weight from the original SIM in place of another removable weight directly behind the club head.
You want to hear a bunch of BS? Listen to the “technology” that TaylorMade is trying to sell you on, all packed into one driver. Forged Ring Construction, SIM Inertia Generator, Speed Injected Twist Face, Thru-Slot Speed Pocket, Split Mass Weighting. What a load of bologna. I literally get tired of reading reviews of clubs because they just hype up these ridiculous things that sound great but really don’t mean crap. Practically all name brand drivers in the past 5 years will perform within 1-2% of each other. Let’s be real here.
I won’t be able to tell you how YOU and YOUR SWING will perform with this driver. I hope you didn’t come here expecting that. However, I will be able to make some sweeping generalizations about the TaylorMade SIM2 driver.
The SIM2 should be the least popular/common driver of the three models. The TaylorMade SIM2 driver is meant for low spin, which is something that will benefit (for the most part) low handicaps and fast swing speeds mainly. I’d highly recommend the SIM2 MAX driver to the large majority of golfers. The MAX model is more forgiving, higher launching, and will fly straighter and further for the majority of golfers. If you have a really fast swing (let’s say 100mph+), then I’d recommend trying out the MAX due to it’s low spin capabilities.
Before we move on, I want to emphasize that if you are going to be buying a $500+ driver (you freaking rich moron), then you better be spending the extra ~$100 or so to be professional fit for the best performing head, shaft, and shaft flex combination. If you are just buying the TaylorMade SIM2 off the rack, you might as well be throwing away your money or just sticking with your current driver and saving your money.
Who the TaylorMade SIM2 Driver is Best For
The TaylorMade SIM2 driver is best for rich suckers that have more money than they have cents. Actually, though, the driver is best for those with fast swing speeds that know that they create too much backspin on their drives. If you swing fast, but your drives fly far too high and spinny, then this is a great fit. However, you can also adjust your swing to generate less spin (like swinging more up on the ball and/or adjusting your posture to lean away from the target a hair at address).
Keep in mind that even if you fit the target audience (high swing speeds but spinny drives), there are still far better value options on the market. You don’t have to spend $500+ to get a high quality driver. Not even close, actually.
Pros & Cons
- most popular driver brand in the world. We can’t all be idiots, can we?
- great option for those that create too much backspin
- low, penetrating ball flights that aren’t affected by the wind as much
- adjustable hosel to change loft (up or down 2 degrees)
- only meant for a small target audience, which most golfers that need extra forgiveness are not a part of
- the least forgiving of the three models
- $500+ for a single club is crazy. Are we ignoring this fact??
- TaylorMe already released a brand new line of drivers (SIM3) before I had the time to click “Publish” on this article. Hard to keep up with them.
Compared to the Other TaylorMade SIM drivers (Max and Max-D)
Compared to the Max and Max-D models, the standard TaylorMade SIM2 driver is:
- better for those with fast club head speeds that are generating too much back spin on their drives
- more workable than the Max and Max-D
- the least forgiving of the three. The Max has a larger sweet spot than the SIM2, and the Max-D has an even larger sweet spot.
- the one with the lowest launch and the lowest spin (keep in mind that lower spin is not helpful for everyone)
- the same size club head as the others (460cc)
- the one used most on tour (due to their higher club head speeds and importance of workability.
Better Value Option
The TaylorMade SIM2 driver is obviously a great driver. However, you can get a very similar driver for $200 or less easy. Super easy.
The best value alternative to the TaylorMade SIM2 driver is, in my opinion, the TaylorMade SLDR. Super low spin, adjustable weight (even though it’s a sliding weight on the SLDR), great driver. I’d be willing to bet that the two (with the same shaft and in the same settings and hitting the center of the club face) would perform within 1-2% of each other when it comes to distance, forgiveness, and spin rates. Oh, and you can get a TaylorMade SLDR driver in nearly pristine condition for around $150. In decent condition, you can fetch one for closer to $100, which is crazy good value.
I truly hope that you’ve enjoyed my unbiased TaylorMade SIM2 driver review. If you have and comments/questions, please leave them below.
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50 Words or Less
The TaylorMade SIM2 driver feels absolutely amazing. Strong forgiveness. Lower launch and spin than the other SIM2 drivers.
Due to the lack of PGA Show and general strangeness of 2020, the new SIM2 line from TaylorMade didn’t seem to generate the hype that it normally would. However, that hasn’t stopped this new generation of drivers from becoming fast favorites among many of the fitters that I talk to. I was eager to get my hands on the TaylorMade SIM2 driver to see what it could do for me.
The TaylorMade SIM2 driver goes all in on carbon fiber. The majority of the crown is black carbon fiber with just a thin band of white near the ball and a stripe of blue around the sides and rear. On the sole, the carbon fiber provides a base for very large graphics in blue and white.
In terms of size and shape at address, the SIM2 driver looks compact with a slight pear shape that’s enhanced by the graphics. Compared to the SIM2 Max, the SIM2 is noticeably shorter from front to back. It’s also worth noting that the SIM2 sits perfectly square at address in the neutral setting.
Finally, a quick shout out for the stock headcover. 2021 has been a good year for stock covers, and the SIM2 is at or near the top. I particularly like the restrained use of the blue. It looks sharp now but won’t look dated in a year.
Sound & Feel
I LOVE the feel of the SIM2 driver. Yes, all caps L-O-V-E. This is, hands down, my favorite driver feel of 2021 and possibly going back a ways beyond that. On center (and even off) it is unbelievably solid, like driving a stake with a sledge hammer. The feel makes this driver addictive to hit.
The sound at impact is a mid-pitch “crack.” The sound complements the feel well, but definitely takes a back seat to the way it feels. I found that the sound doesn’t change a lot between pure and poor strikes, but there is adequate feedback through the hands.
As we’ve come to expect from TaylorMade, their new SIM2 driver comes with a dump truck full of technology buzzwords. Several of the technologies are carried forward from previous generations: Speed Injected Twist Face, Speed Pocket, and SIM Inertia Generator. One omission is movable weights. This is the first time in recent memory that no driver in the TM line has adjustable weights. There is still loft and face angle adjustability at the hosel.
The new hype is around Forged Ring Construction and Split Mass Weighting. Forged Ring Construction refers to the aluminum piece that connects the rear weight, club face, and carbon sole. Split Mass Weighting, as the name implies, is the idea that there are two large slugs of weight – one near the face, one at the rear.
When testing the SIM2 driver, I found that the low launch, low spin claims were certainly true. This driver wants to produce penetrating shots with loads of potential for roll out. For the player who prefers a lower trajectory or needs to drop some spin, the SIM2 is a great choice.
What surprised me about the SIM2 driver is the level of forgiveness. Based on TaylorMade’s description, I expected this to be their “players only” model, but I found that it was very consistent in terms of both ball speed and direction. Particularly in my first session, I was not swinging the SIM2 well, but I still got solid results. On the days when I brought a better swing, the results were flat out excellent.
While the tinkerers may miss the adjustable weights, I think they’ll get over it when they experience the forgiveness and consistency of the TaylorMade SIM2 driver. If you’re the kind of player who wants lower launch and spin off the tee, this needs to be near the top of your demo list for 2021.
Visit TaylorMade Golf HERE
TaylorMade SIM2 Driver Price & Specs
TaylorMade SIM2 Drivers Review
As good as last year’s SIM drivers were, one of the very best drivers in fact, we’re already seeing a rapid take up on tour of the new SIM2 model in the bags of Dustin Johnson and Collin Morikawa. So we wanted to find out how the performance had evolved.
Our custom-fitted SIM was as good as anything out there last year, so a good start was to retro fit our fitted shaft into SIM2.
At address, you’ll notice the SIM2 has a darker carbon fibre section on top, which unquestionably contrasts more sharply with the white front section to better assist with alignment.
How last year’s SIM driver (left) compares to the new SIM2 at address
We didn’t have a 9° head in SIM to test against our 9° SIM2 samples but the adjustable hosel allowed us to get them very close, as you can see from the data screen below.
The data from the Foresight Sports GCQuad launch monitor shows that SIM was tough to beat. We swung SIM2 a fraction faster, translating into a touch more ball speed. But we found SIM2 to launch a lot higher and with more spin, resulting in carries that matched where we were with SIM.
RELATED: TaylorMade SIM2 Irons Review
Lofting down in SIM2 helped manage that spin and bring the flight down into a more acceptable window, but only eked out another yard of carry on average.
The SIM2 Max was equally fast off the face and produced more spin, which meant it didn’t quite carry as far for us but this will be player dependent.
It was more out on the course where the differences between SIM and SIM2 became more apparent. Hitting shots down a hole, with SIM2 it seemed easier to control the direction where SIM seemed erratic by comparison.
SIM2 Max produced a noticeably higher flight than SIM2, which along with the extra spin will be well received by those who struggle to flight their tee shots or don’t spin the ball enough.
SIM2 also feels a little more powerful than SIM, thanks to a slightly duller sound which we really enjoyed.
In summary, everything about SIM2 seems to be about finding fairways without giving up distance – the enhanced alignment, bigger faces and greater stability on off-centre hits.
The only caveat to this would be the removal of the sole weight adjustability from SIM, which some golfers found useful in promoting a certain flight or guarding against a common miss.
While some will have found it useful, we’re confident the extra forgiveness will go a long way to offsetting the effect of the moveable weight.
The final comment needs to be on the full carbon fibre sole panel, which some may worry lacks the durability required to withstand the force of any inadvertent impact with the ground or the occasional slam in anger.
Having inspected the piece from a deconstructed head, we can confirm it is flexible but also very robust. The surface is also incredibly smooth, so if you do catch the ground it will tend to glide rather than dig into it.
Yes, if you’re unlucky to catch a hidden rock, it may scratch but this would just as likely be the case with a titanium sole. In summary – if you buy a SIM2 driver, make sure you look after it! Especially as it is a premium investment – although not as expensive as it used to be.
With all SIM2 models positioned at £449, there is value to be had if your driver is a few years old because of how forgiving they have become and also how versatile the range is with the three models, but golfers who already have SIM are unlikely to experience significant gains in overall performance.
REVIEW – "How the TaylorMade SIM2 could transform your game"
The TaylorMade SIM2 drivers have been built almost entirely from the ground up to deliver a new level of forgiveness, speed and distance. The big question is, do they deliver?
Last year, TaylorMade had a runaway success on its hands with the SIM drivers.
They were fast off the face, forgiving, accurate, launched high and spun low, all while being aerodynamically efficient thanks to their unique shaping.
• TaylorMade SIM2, SIM2 Max & SIM2 Max•D drivers – FIRST LOOK!
Suffice to say it was always going to be a hard act to follow.
So, in order to eke out greater performance across the board - and significantly increase the forgiveness levels - TaylorMade decided to completely reinvent the way it builds its drivers.
By utilising a new design called Forged Ring Construction, TaylorMade has been able to bring a host of new technology and construction ideas to the table with SIM2.
This new construction has resulted in noticeable improvements across the board but what stands out most is just how forgiving the SIM2 driver line-up is.
By incorporating a full carbon sole panel to go along with the customary carbon crown of TaylorMade drivers, so much additional weight has been freed up and then relocated into the SIM2, SIM2 Max and SIM2 MAX•D’s Inertia Generators.
The heavy rear weights (16g SIM2, 24g SIM2 Max and 22g SIM2 Max•D) deliver a level of forgiveness that some golfers might not associate with TaylorMade drivers of the past.
The CG (centre of gravity) is now located so low and far back within each driver head that the MOI readings have gone through the roof.
Yes, TaylorMade has pretty much always produced forgiving drivers - but, honestly, nothing comes close to the levels seen in SIM2.
The forgiveness story doesn’t end there.
In 2018, TaylorMade introduced Twist Face technology to address the most common mishits. Last year, the brand supercharged this tech with its Speed Injection process.
Now, we have another remarkable leap in TaylorMade face design.
The entire back of the face has been CNC milled to tune the thickness of the titanium to promote peak speed in the areas of your most common mishits.
The sweetspot on these drivers stretches diagonally from the high toe to the low heel - and it feels ridiculously big. I was getting more consistent speeds and launch conditions than ever before with a TaylorMade driver. I can't tell you how good that feels.
Your confidence, while faced with a tight tee shot, will only be further bolstered by the fact that the faces of the SIM2 drivers are noticeably bigger than their predecessors (SIM2 + 12%, SIM2 Max + 5% & SIM2 Max•D + 5%).
Plus, the CNC milling has allowed TaylorMade to relocate its speed ports from the face to a singular port on the toe, which, in my opinion, is a good aesthetic change.
Again, TaylorMade says this big step-up in its face design was only possible thanks to the new Forged Ring Construction.
The final piece of the forgiveness puzzle is TaylorMade’s patented Thru-Slot Speed Pocket, which helps to retain ball speed and performance on shots struck low on the face.
What makes the SIM2 drivers special is the fact that TaylorMade hasn’t chased this "new level of forgiveness" at the expense of what has so often made its drivers incredibly popular - speed.
Once again, we have the asymmetric shaping on the sole, which is designed to deliver increased speed at the most critical stage of the swing: the milliseconds right before impact.
• TaylorMade SIM2 fairways and rescues – FIRST LOOK!
The aerodynamically-efficient shaping makes SIM2 very fast, with the additional clubhead speed provided being converted into free ball speed and distance.
Plus, the Speed Injected Twist Face produces the remarkable ball speed we have come to expect over the past few years from TaylorMade, albeit now with the added forgiveness and consistency of the CNC milling.
When you mix all of the above together, what you have is the most user-friendly TaylorMade driver line-up ever. I mean that, too.
The level of forgiveness and consistency is utterly staggering. If you end up gaming a SIM2 driver, then you should fully expect to be finding more fairways and hitting your tee shots further, particularly on the ones you don't quite catch right.
The extent to which your wildest drives simply refuse to be punished is what really elevates SIM2 beyond its predecessors.
In terms of the looks, the SIM2 is bound to be a winner with TaylorMade fans and I reckon most other golfers.
The black satin carbon crown and contrasting chalk colour scheme really helps to frame the ball at address and makes alignment a piece of cake.
The high-gloss black carbon on the sole and blue accents of the new aluminium ring, meanwhile, gives the SIM2 an eye-catching and different look to what has gone before.
The sound and feel is very much what you would expect from TaylorMade. Like most of its recent drivers, you get that low-pitched, crunchy, solid feel off the face that I challenge anyone not to fall in love with.
Across the three models, there is a driver to suit everyone’s game.
Personally, the SIM2 was ideal for me.
Its TPS Front Weight sits just behind the face to deliver the kind of low-spinning performance I need to get the most out of my game. Thankfully, however, it doesn’t really sacrifice on forgiveness and retains a consistently high launch for awesome distance.
• TaylorMade SIM2 Max & SIM2 Max OS irons – FIRST LOOK!
The SIM2 Max will likely be the model to suit most of you reading this. Its heavier 24g tungsten back weight makes this driver so easy to hit. It is the without a doubt the most forgiving TaylorMade driver I have ever tested. Its TPS Front Weight, meanwhile, is strategically located to deliver the mid-to-high launch and mid-to-low spin properties that will benefit golfers of almost all abilities.
Completing the new line-up is the SIM MAX•D. Now, although I haven’t had my hands on this model just yet, the work TaylorMade has carried out to significantly increase the MOI and forgiveness levels of its ‘Draw’ design, is bound to be of huge benefit to those of you prone to slicing it.
BRYSON, BIFURCATION AND... PAOLO DI CANIO?! - PAUL McGINLEY GOES DEEP
Even when I really start to nit-pick, I struggle to come up with a reason why one these drivers wouldn’t be a great fit for not only my game but for just about every golfer.
Perhaps the only reason why some golfers might be turned off by the SIM2 line-up is the lack of adjustability within the head.
But let’s be honest... how often do you really adjust your driver?
I’m guessing, like me, pretty much never, particularly if you’ve been custom fitted for it - and if you haven't been, what are you doing?
TaylorMade decided to rip up the driver design rulebook and start again with SIM2.
The entirely new construction methodology that's been employed has TaylorMade saying it has “engineered a driver with no trade-offs”. I would have to agree with them.
There isn’t one area where I can find fault with these drivers.
If you decide to test a SIM2, the chances of it taking up permanent residency inside your golf bag are very, very high.
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2 review sim driver
Are you ready to hit it longer and straighter in 2021? If so, I’m sure you’re researching the best drivers on the market and likely stumbled on the TaylorMade SIM2 series.
These drivers have made quite a splash in the new year and by the time you’re done reading this review, it’s easy to see why. It’s trusted by some top names in the game including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson, John Rahm, and more.
The SIM 2 became a huge hit in 2020, but the everyday golfer wasn’t able to get it quite yet. Now, it’s ready for the golfing public and has already become a mega hit. In this review, we’ll break down the technology and specs of these drivers to help find the right one for your game.
TaylorMade SIM 2 Driver Review
So what makes this new driver from TaylorMade so special?
Well, quite a bit… It’s replacing the SIM driver from 2020 which was very popular. As TaylorMade said, “First we reshaped the driver, then we reconstructed it. Completely rebuilding the driver from the ground up to give you both forgiveness and distance. Go ahead, the tee box is yours.”
Features of the SIM2 Max Driver
- Speed Injected Twist Face Technology: Heel and toe shots are about to get a lot better. Thanks to the twist face technology, you’ll have more speed and straighter shots on off center hits.
- Forged Ring Construction: This is what makes this driver so special. The aluminum they use is precision milled and designed to help increase both power and forgiveness.
- Aerodynamic Analytics: This club has been redesigned to be even more aerodynamic to produce faster clubhead speeds.
- Speed Pocket: Finally, don’t forget the Speed pocket which helps mishits that are low on the face. Paired with twist face technology, you should find more fairways and barely notice a difference on total yardage with mishits.
Here’s how all this amazing technology plays out in each version of their driver.
SIM 2 Driver Models
Like the previous models, there are several iterations of the SIM2 driver. Here’s a breakdown of the three to help you find the right one for your game.
SIM 2 Driver
The first option is the SIM 2 driver.
It’s the least forgiving of the bunch and used by some of the best players in the world. It has a low launch profile and high forgiveness (but less than the other two models). This driver has a high MOI with 16g steel weight for optimal launch and low spin characteristics.
There are two stock shafts in the men’s driver; the Tensei AV Raw blue series and the Project X HZRDUS Smoke RDX. Both are some of the highest quality shafts on tour and normally an upcharge.
For a mid-launch and R, S, and X flex, choose the Tensei. It’s geared to help with a bit more spin and launch. While the Project X HZRDUS is only available in S and X flex and geared towards golfers who want a low launch, low spin driver. It is available in 9 and 10.5 loft options.
SIM 2 MAX Driver
The second option is the SIM 2 MAX driver.
This is more forgiving than the first one on this list and also used by players on the PGA Tour. Unlike the SIM 2, the Max version has 24g tungsten weight (not 16) to help with even more forgiveness and distance.
There are two different shaft options including the Mitsubishi KuroKage Silver or the Fujikura Ventus blue. These help provide a higher launch than the SIM2 stock shafts and also much lighter in weight with each flex. Plus, they have an A flex for senior golfers as well.
This driver is face neutral and provides a slight higher launch and a bit more forgiveness as well. I’d recommend this driver for golfers in the 10-20 handicap range who want a little more distance on mishits and more launch than the original. The MAX is available in 9 and 10.5 loft options
SIM 2 MAX D Driver
The third and final model is the SIM2 MAX D driver.
The “D” stands for draw as this club has a draw bias to help you turn the ball over from right to left. If you really struggle with a slice, this is the club to help you straighten things out.
The MAX D model also provides the highest launch and most forgiveness of all three clubs. This model is great for the everyday golfer of 25+ handicap who wants to improve their tee box game and find more fairways.
The main difference here is the stock shaft option as there’s only one to choose from. The Fujikura Air Speeder shaft is the lightest of any stock shafts for TaylorMade and available in A, R, and S flex. Since it’s geared for mid to higher handicap player, it is also available in 9, 10.5, or 12 degree loft options.
Hands-On Review of the SIM 2 Driver
We tested a normal SIM 2 Driver with the HZRDUS Smoke Shaft.
On the range, this driver seemed very forgiving and produced a very straight ball. Ball flight was lower (that is a good thing for my game and why I chose the HZRDUS Smoke Shaft) and distance seemed to be better than the original SIM.
On the course, what I noticed right off the bat was the increase in distance from last year’s SIM Driver. It’s hard to believe that in 2021 technology is still helping with distance. I suspect it was the lower spin as roll out seemed to be better than last year’s SIM driver.
The increase in distance did not come at the expense of accuracy. I found the fairway at about the same frequency as I normally do. To me, that is a big positive as generally less spin = fewer fairways and less control.
At the end of the day, if you liked the original SIM driver the SIM 2 driver is worth the upgrade.
Alternatives to the SIM Max 2 Driver
While the TaylorMade is a great driver trusted by some of the biggest names in golf, don’t forget about the competition either. 2021 brought in some truly epic drivers (pun intended), here are some of our favorites.
Callaway Epic Driver
Callaway upgraded their Epic Flash from 2019 with the Epic driver series in 2021. This is the next iteration for the highly popular A.I. designed drivers from Callaway. It is replacing the Mavrik series of 2020 with some nice upgrades for extra distance and forgiveness.
Like the TaylorMade, there are three different models to choose from including a Tour inspired “Max LS” version. Plus, two of the three models also come with a sliding weight to help you move mass on the clubhead to the toe or heel. I’m a bit surprised that TaylorMade didn’t have one version with a sliding weight.
Players of all skill levels are loving the Callaway Epic series. Click here to read our review of the Callaway Epic Drivers.
Titleist TSi Series
Another great pick is the Titleist TSi series. They have four different models and arguably some of the best looking drivers to hit the market in 2021. Their all black design is great looking from all angles and offers great benefits for any type of golfer.
Unlike the Callaway and TaylorMade models, there are four options with this one. Each one is less forgiving (TSi1 being the most forgiving, TSi4 being the least forgiving). Plus, the TSi3 also has a sliding weight for maximum adjustability.
For a full list of our favorite drivers read our roundup of best golf drivers for 2021. If you are a beginner or high handicapper you should check out these drivers while those who battle a big slice should consider these drivers.
FAQs About the TaylorMade SIM 2 Driver
Do you have more questions about the TaylorMade SIM 2 Driver? If so, we got answers…
Is this driver adjustable?
No, none of the drivers offer a sliding weight feature. But you can adjust the weights in the front and back of the driver. Doing so can help you move more weight forward or back to help find the right launch and spin numbers. While I’m sure some golfers would prefer the extra tweaking, it’s better than nothing.
Is there a women’s version available?
Yes, in fact there are several women’s versions of this club. Lady golfers can choose between the same three models. The only difference is shaft flex and length, but still all the great benefits of this latest new club from TaylorMade.
This is a great step in the right direction and it’s easy to see why it’s a top-selling driver of 2021. While the SIM driver from 2020 was popular, I think that this one is even better. Thanks to its redesign and new technology, it’s a great driver for anyone who wants more speed, distance, and accuracy.
Plus, the two shaft choices are amazing picks from TaylorMade. Remember if you need a little higher launch to carry it further, opt for the Tensei shaft. But if you’re a lower handicap player who needs less spin, opt for the HZRDUS smoke shaft.
Click here to order your SIM 2 Driver or you can pick up one here. Make sure to get the right model!
TaylorMade SIM2 Max Driver Review – Max Forgiveness
This is a review of the TaylorMade SIM2 Max driver.
The SIM2 Max shares the same cutting-edge technologies and performance potential as the SIM2 driver, but with a heavier tungsten weight in the back, it’s designed to deliver a higher launch, higher spin, and more forgiveness.
Just how much more forgiving is the SIM2 Max than the SIM2? How does performance differ in general? When is it worth putting one driver in the bag over the other?
Here’s what I’m going to be covering in this review:
Read on to find out what you need to know to make an informed purchase.
What are the reviews like?
As well as the standard SIM2 driver was received by the golfing community, the SIM2 Max seems to have even more of an edge in terms of ratings.
Many critics consider the SIM2 Max to be a very accessible driver that is easy to play well with. The SIM2 Max has average customer scores of 5/5 on Global Golf, 4.7/5 on Amazon, and 4.8/5 (over 250 reviews) on the official TM store. It also earned a gold medal on the 2021 Golf Digest Hot List.
The SIM2 Max is the other driver in the SIM2 line, along with the SIM2, that has actually been used on the PGA Tour.
What People Like
- promotes a lot of club head speed
- excellent performance on off-center hits
- generally regarded as having more forgiveness than the SIM Max
- vibrant blue accents are popular
- solid feel with no harsh vibrations
What People Don’t Like
- 12° loft is not available for lefties
Get the TaylorMade SIM2 Max driver here
What are the features?
The SIM2 Max leverages basically the same features and technologies as the regular SIM2, namely:
- Forged Ring Construction: lightweight, high-strength aluminum wraps around the back of the club to save weight and greatly improve forgiveness.
- Split Mass Weighting: consisting of a 24g tungsten weight in the rear and a TPS weight on the sole, this allows for precise custom weighting, increased forgiveness, and optimal spin properties.
- Asymmetric Inertia Generator: increases aerodynamic club head speed and shifts the CG back for increased stability.
- Speed-Injected Twist Face: a Twist Face that helps correct off-center hits is combined with injections that bring the speed of the face (COR) up to the legal limit.
- Thru-Slot Speed Pocket: the most flexible Speed Pocket design yet increases sole flexibility, leading to increased ball speed and forgiveness low on the face.
The key differences lie in size and weighting.
The SIM2 Max has a slightly larger face and address profile than the SIM2. And instead of the 16g steel weight of the SIM2, the SIM2 Max uses a 24g tungsten weight at the back of the Inertia Generator to shift the CG further back, resulting in a higher launch, more spin, and more forgiveness.
The SIM2 Max driver is available in 9°, 10.5°, and 12° standard lofts at 460CC. Unfortunately, the high-loft variant is not available for left-handed golfers, so they’ll need to get a lower stated loft and adjust up using the loft sleeve.
The included loft sleeve allows you to adjust loft, lie and face angle. There are 12 possible sleeve variations that can increase or decrease the loft and lie angle by ±2°, and the face angle by ±4°.
The stock shafts available with the SIM2 Max are the Fujikura Ventus Blue (mid-high launch) and KURO KAGE Silver (mid launch) — you’ll notice how the stock shaft options are meant to help promote a higher launch compared to the SIM2 as well. The stock grip is the TM Z600.
If you’re interested, full information on the driver, shafts, grips, their specs, and any custom shaft options can be found here.
Below are the specs of the SIM2 Max driver. Click or zoom to enlarge.
How does the driver perform?
The first thing I’ll note is that with the SIM2 Max driver (and the other SIM2 drivers, for that matter), I was picking up a couple extra mph of club head speed. This is no doubt due to the Inertia Generator design which promotes improved aerodynamics through the swing.
This alone will translate to more ball speeds and more distance than what you’re likely used to.
But beyond that, I was getting very similar ball speed numbers to the SIM2 driver — there are no surprises in this regard. In addition, ball speeds are a little better compared to the SIM Max.
During my tests, I did indeed find the SIM2 Max to launch slightly higher with a little more spin. Taking into account my swing speed, I was getting around five yards more of total distance on average versus the SIM2.
The bottom line is this: the ball speed potential is basically the same as the SIM2: fantastic. But in mis-hit areas, the SIM2 Max has a slight edge.
If you find that you’re not getting enough height on your shots with the SIM2, you should definitely try out the SIM2 Max because it could be a game-changer for you.
At this point, there’s little doubt that the SIM2 Max is more forgiving than the SIM2. And this was definitely borne out in my testing.
More specifically, my mis-hits simply perform better with the SIM2 Max — the distance results are more comparable to solid strikes, and all but the worst mis-hits tend to stay in the fairway.
But how is the forgiveness compared to the SIM Max? A few people claim that there’s no improvement there, but I would strongly disagree with them.
In my SIM Max review, I noted that the driver didn’t seem much more forgiving than the M6. TaylorMade has certainly closed the gap with the SIM2 Max, which, in a nutshell, I think is one of the most forgiving drivers you can play right now.
The SIM2 Max driver is said to produce about 200-300 more rpm of spin than the SIM2. During my tests, I was averaging about 2800 rpm and to me, this seems quite accurate.
Combined with the stock shaft options which themselves promote a higher launch, I was getting an appreciably high ball flight with a neutral shot shape. It’s a very consistent, dependable ball flight.
Of course, the height and shape of your ball flight will largely depend on how you swing the golf club. Although there isn’t as much room to experiment given the lack of a sliding weight, you can still use the loft sleeve or change your shaft if you’re not completely satisfied.
The SIM2 Max is less workable than the SIM2, but you can still shape shots. In fact, unless you need to carve out some serious curves off the tee, the shotmaking capabilities of the SIM2 Max should be more than enough for your game.
What about look, sound & feel?
There’s not much to say about the look of the SIM2 Max driver that I didn’t already say in my SIM2 review. The look is practically the same with the same lines and colour accents.
The one thing I’ll note is that the SIM2 Max driver has a slightly larger footprint, with just a touch more elongation in the back of the head as well as a slightly shallower face.
Aside from that, the SIM2 Max has that signature TaylorMade look at address: a dark carbon crown and a strip of contrasting colour by the leading edge. As with the SIM2, you can customize the look of your SIM2 Max driver through the online-exclusive MySIM2 offering.
The Sound & Feel
I was a bit surprised to learn that off-center strikes don’t feel much different compared to the SIM2, even though the results in those face regions are better. Nonetheless, I have no complaints, as the SIM2 line is already on another level of forgiveness compared to the original SIM.
On the whole, the SIM2 Max has virtually the same excellent feel as the SIM2: very solid and powerful with a nice, satisfying “crack” at impact.
The sound is also similar, but one interesting thing I noted was that there is a greater difference in sound between the sweet spot and off-center areas than there is on the SIM2. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it does mean that you get quite good feedback for a GI driver.
Also, there is virtually none of that resonating, hollow, “jarring” feel that you often get when you mis-hit cheaper drivers. The SIM2 Max is a premium driver, and you certainly know it when you hit it.
Where should you buy the SIM2 Max driver online?
There are a couple places I recommend aside from the official TaylorMade store, which only offers their newest models.
One is Global Golf, which is the certified pre-owned source of TaylorMade golf clubs (new condition is also available). They offer many attractive policies and deals including club trade-ins and Utry, a try-before-you-buy program.
The other is eBay. They are a fantastic source for golf equipment, both new and used.
By the way, I don’t advise buying from Amazon. They don’t specialize in golf equipment and don’t have a convenient purchasing and support system in place.
The SIM2 Max is a very stable, comfortable, easy-to-hit driver that, along with the SIM2 Max D, should be a top choice for mid-handicappers all the way to beginners who are learning how to make decent ball contact.
Like the SIM2, the SIM2 Max doesn’t really do anything poorly, and the launch and spin properties will be very generous to golfers who can’t quite generate the “elite” club head speed of many Tour players.
Coming from a lefty, it’s unfortunate that left-handed golfers don’t have the 12° loft option available to them; they’ll just have to do their best to come up with a workaround if it does happen to be an impediment.
Having said that, the SIM2 Max driver is a must-try. I definitely think it’s worth upgrading from the SIM Max, especially if you can get a decent trade-in value.
Get the TaylorMade SIM2 Max driver here
Are you interested in the SIM2 Max driver? Have you played it? What’s your experience? Let us know in the comments below.
TaylorMade SIM2 Max Driver
- Incredible distance as long as the ball flight isn't too high
- More forgiving than the SIM2 and SIM Max
- Can customize the look with MySIM2
- Excellent feel with surprisingly distinct feedback
- No major weaknesses
- 12° loft is unavailable for left-handed golfers
GET GREAT DEALS ON THE SIM2 MAX DRIVER HERE
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TaylorMade SIM2 Drivers
- The TaylorMade SIM2 driver family includes three models (SIM2, SIM2 MAX, SIM2 MAX D).
- Each of the models has a single-piece face cup and a forged aluminum ring to support the crown and sole.
- Retail price is $529.99. Availability starts Feb. 19.
With the release of the TaylorMade SIM2, SIM2 MAX and SIM2 MAX D, the company reaffirms its commitment to the shape (and, I suppose, the in motion) portions of the story behind last season’s SIM drivers. With SIM2, the shape carries on because speed is still important (you don’t say?) and so aerodynamics remain important, too.
So, much of what we first saw with SIMcarries over with SIM2 drivers. A ubiquitous TaylorMade technology has been chopped, however, and the materials and construction used to create the signature SIM (and now SIM2) shape have been replaced with different and potentially compelling materials.
In some ways, SIM2 is pretty much the same as the original. In other meaningful ways, it’s significantly different.
Deconstructing and Reinventing SIM2
In my story on the G425 drivers, I wrote about PING’s pursuit of small improvements with the hope that chaining enough of them together will lead to a quantifiable improvement for most golfers.
Just as with the larger story, TaylorMade’s approach is the same … but different. The company describes its methods as rethinking how drivers are built from ground up. In simple terms, it means an examination of each of the various pieces of the SIM2 driver as truly individual components. In designing the SIM2 driver, TaylorMade considered the face, sole, crown and skirt and looked for ways to improve each part individually.
TaylorMade believes it has succeeded and has Voltroned the parts of the SIM2 driver into a singular better whole that provides quantifiable performance improvements over the first iteration of SIM.
You might even say it’s SIM-IER. (Sorry, couldn’t help myself.)
With a unique combination of titanium, carbon fiber, aluminum and, if you want to count the rear-mounted weights, tungsten or steel depending on the model, the TaylorMade SIM2 driver is serving up a new level of multi-material construction.
Here’s how it all comes together.
So much build up. Here’s your letdown.
Not much has changed on top of the TaylorMade SIM2 driver. TaylorMade is using same carbon fiber material as in the original SIM. The most noticeable change is a move from the SIM’s gray crown to more of a true black in the SIM2. I’m probably in the minority but I prefer the gray. Either way, there’s nothing off-putting here (unless you really hate the chalk white on the leading edge).
The small improvement is a subtly reshaped crown on the SIM2 driver. The carbon fiber has been pulled a bit more into the heel side. The redesign smooths things out a bit and makes SIM2’s crown more symmetrical at address.
Full Carbon Sole
With the exception of the bits of shelving extending from TaylorMade’s new facepiece to support it, the entirety of the sole of the TaylorMade SIM2 driver is comprised of three-ply carbon fiber. Above and beyond the requisite bits about saving weight, the design objective was to ensure the sole material is durable enough to survive whatever golfers put it through.
Short story: it’s designed to take a beating.
Whether said beating is the accumulation of everyday wear and tear or a full-on exhibition of anger management issues, the TaylorMade SIM2 driver’s carbon sole is designed to withstand as much as golfers can reasonably throw at it … and then some.
While it’s ultimately not a thing that matters, TaylorMade’s centrally placed T-bug logo is large (it’s for guys who REALLY love TaylorMade), though still reasonably subtle. The full TaylorMade script logo is positioned outside of the wear zone where it has a better chance of staying clean and scratch free.
Single-Piece Face Cup Design
A quick refresher: the majority of driver designs feature an elliptically shaped face insert that’s, well, inserted into an opening in the chassis and then welded into place. The weld marks are then polished (ground) and, yeah, that’s pretty much it.
Polishing isn’t entirely precise and can impact things like loft, bulge and roll as well as general consistency from one driver head to the next. As you may know, the imprecision of the polishing process is the reason why COBRA CNC mills the exterior of its driver faces.
With the TaylorMade SIM2 Driver, the company is taking a different, perhaps more aggressive, approach. The entire front portion of its driver — face, ledges for the crown and sole, cut-through slot, front swingweight port, hosel — basically all the business at the face end is made from a single piece of titanium.
If you look closely enough at the inside (you shouldn’t because you’ll have to destroy your driver to do it), you can see the critical detail that drives this story — a CNC-milled face design. COBRA does it on the outside, TaylorMade does its milling on the inside.
Kinda the same but different.
The milling allows for what TaylorMade calls an “intelligently optimized sweet spot.” By the numbers, the sweet area (the part of the face where COR is at least .800) on the SIM2 driver is 43-percent larger than on SIM.
That’s the feature. The benefit is more speed over a larger portion of the face.
Ultimately, the speed story boils down to using CNC milling to precisely control face thickness with an eye for maximizing speed in the areas where golfers most commonly make contact. A bit like COBRA’s e9 face, the idea is an elliptical pattern where speed is boosted in high-probability impact zones like the high toe and low heel areas.
That intelligent optimization stuff allows TaylorMade to reduce the number of Speed Injection ports from two on the face to a single port in the toe.
Sorry, guys, no more screw face.
Based on the count alone, that would seem to limit TaylorMade’s ability to precisely position its speed-reducing goo (the idea of Speed Injection is to manufacture faces faster than they’re allowed to be and then add the amount of material necessary to slow them down to levels the USGA finds acceptable). TaylorMade, however, says the added precision provided by CNC milling allows for tighter controls which, in turn, give it the ability to manage speed (technically CT) from a single toe port.
While all of this sounds great so far, sacrifices had to be made to the driver design gods. To allow the CNC machines to reach the bottom of its faces, TaylorMade had to give up its weight track.
A Long History of Movable Mass
By my recollection, every flagship TaylorMade driver going back to R5 TP has featured some sort of movable weight technology. That streak ends here but don’t read much into it. Tomo Bystedt, TaylorMade’s Senior Director for Metalwoods, is adamant that the weight-less design of the SIM2 driver shouldn’t be taken as a signal that TaylorMade has moved on from movable weight technology.
Let’s call it a pause.
Adding a weight track to SIM2 would have meant a performance sacrifice. Specifically, it wouldn’t have been able to mill the lower portion of the SIM2 face. That wasn’t something TaylorMade was willing to consider and, so, no movable weights this year.
As a consequence, fitters lose a bit of flexibility and golfers lose a favored tinker toy but, as I’ve said countless times before, there is a design penalty inherent to movable weights. By eliminating them, TaylorMade has potentially created a better driver.
Besides, between the SIM2, SIM2 MAX, and SIM2 MAX D heads, the various hosel adjustments and available selection of shafts, TaylorMade believes it has your fitting needs covered.
The other upside is that TaylorMade hopes eliminating the track will remove perceptions some golfers have that the driver with movable weights is universally better than the one without. That kind of thinking sometimes leads golfers to pay more and get less (from a performance standpoint). Kinda like a Jeep.
With SIM2, SIM2 MAX, and SIM2 MAX D essentially all having the same standard set of features, golfers can focus entirely on the benefits offered by each model.
TaylorMade SIM2 Driver – Forged Aluminum Ring
The most intriguing, and the flashiest, element of the TaylorMade SIM2 driver design is the forged aluminum ring that surrounds the crown and makes up a good portion of the back end of the driver.
The anodized aluminum ring has pins on either side that allow it to interlock with the face piece. The crown and sole are bonded to the top and bottom respectively.
While something as basic as a cool, perhaps futuristic, look isn’t without value on a retail shelf, the functional purpose of the ring is to save weight over the titanium that would normally be used in that section.
TaylorMade says its aluminum is 40 percent lighter and is better suited to its particular application than carbon fiber. The latter works really well in a variety of what are largely sheet applications. With more complex geometries like TaylorMade’s ring, carbon fiber isn’t ideal … especially given the durability considerations we discussed earlier.
SIM2 Driver Sound (and Feel)?
Just thinking out loud here but the one concern I have with the SIM2’s fresh take on multi-material driver construction is sound.
Non-standard materials typically result in non-standard acoustics. If you remember the early days of composite, you know it wasn’t always easy on the ears. The Carbon Track in COBRA’s F6+ is another example of innovative design being lost to bad sound.
A ton of carbon fiber, aluminum and not much for acoustic tuning ribs and, well, things could get interesting.
For what it’s worth, Most Wanted Testing, which includes all three TaylorMade SIM2 driver models, started a few weeks ago. Reports on the sound of the SIM2 coming out of the test facility thus far have wavered between pretty good and best in class.
Youe mileage may vary but early indications are sound won’t be a problem.
With the commonalities covered, let’s take a quick look at the differentiation between the three TaylorMade SIM2 models.
TaylorMade SIM2 Driver
Plain old SIM2 (no suffix and no weights) is the lowest spinning of TaylorMade’s SIM2 drivers. Based on how things are shaking out in the market this year, short of a company dramatically understating loft (there’s always one or two who run that particular scam), I’d wager SIM2 and Titleist TSi4 will be the lowest-spinning options on the market this year.
That’s not to say TaylorMade has pushed SIM2 driver spin lower than SIM’s. Reasonably, SIM was as low spin as a retail driver would ever need to be. TaylorMade’s objective was to keep SIM2 spin rates on par with SIM.
That doesn’t mean nothing has changed beyond the chassis and some paint. With a 16-gram steel weight anchored at the back, TaylorMade has increased MOI in the SIM2 driver by nine percent. By no means is that going to insert SIM2 into the “most forgiving driver” conversation. I’m guessing front to back MOI will shake out somewhere in the 4600-4700 range. It’s a long way from a G425 MAX but it’s more than reasonable for a driver on the low-spin end of the conversation.
It should also be said that whether we’re talking SIM2 or SIM2 MAX, TaylorMade has never been a super-high MOI company and it really hasn’t ever wanted to be. Every brand has a design philosophy. In this particular area, TaylorMade is more similar to Callaway.
Speed first. Find forgiveness in ways that extend beyond MOI.
To that end, the SIM2 driver face is 12 percent larger. That typically affords a bit a of extra mishit protection. Even with the larger face, the aerodynamics are the same as the previous generation.
The SIM2 driver is available in eight, nine and 10.5 degrees of loft. Stock shafts include the Mitsubishi Tensei AV RAW Blue 60 and Project X HZRDUS Smoke RDX Black 70.
The stock grip is Golf Pride’s Z-Grip.
Additional shaft and grip options are available at no upcharge.
TaylorMade SIM2 MAX Driver
The progression here is straightforward. The SIM2 MAX has a larger address profile than SIM2. Loft-for-loft, it can be expected to launch higher and spin a bit more – about 300 rpm. It features a 24-gram tungsten weight at the back that boosts MOI about seven percent above SIM MAX.
No one driver is right for everybody but if you’re simply playing the probability game, the SIM2 MAX is your best bet.
As with the standard SIM, we’re not talking about ground-breaking MOI with the SIM MAX2 driver. I wouldn’t say it’s low, either. Again, TaylorMade’s MAX isn’t PING’s MAX. It’s not trying to be. Different philosophies yield entirely different designs which ultimately gives golfers more options.
For the sake of consistency, I’ll also mention the SIM2 MAX driver face is five percent larger than SIM.
The SIM2 MAX is available in nine, 10.5 and 12 degrees. Stock shaft offerings include the Fujikura Ventus* Blue 5 (made-for, no VeloCore) and Mitsubishi Kuro Kage Silver.
The stock grip is Golf Pride’s Z-Grip.
Additional shaft and grip options are available at no upcharge.
TaylorMade SIM2 MAX D Driver
Let’s keep our theme rolling and get the numbers out of the way first. With SIM2 MAX D, TaylorMade has increased both MOI and face size by nine percent. Just one number. That was easy.
The bigger story for the intended audience (slicers) is that TaylorMade has redesigned the inertia generator (the protrusion running the length of the sole) such that the back weight has been shifted towards the heel. Coupled with the internal weighting, that should make the driver a bit easier to turn over and should ultimately produce a more pronounced draw effect.
How much more?
In 2020 Most Wanted Testing, SIM2 MAX D was a bit of an enigma. We didn’t find much that would suggest a significant draw bias. What we did see was a slight draw bias coupled with exceptional playability (long and straight) that put MAX D among the very best in the test.
At the time, I described it as an awesome choice for golfers with a little bit of or occasional slice. I suspect the TaylorMade SIM MAX D will be a bit more aggressive with slice correction than the previous model but as with other aspects of the SIM2 lineup, I’d wager it will shake out at a level that aligns with the TaylorMade identity.
The SIM2 MAX D is available in nine, 10.5 and 12 degrees. The stock shaft offerings include the Fujikura Air Speeder.
The stock grip is Golf Pride’s Z-Grip.
Retail price for all three TaylorMade SIM2 driver models is $529.99
TaylorMade MySim2 Custom Driver Plan
Over the past couple of seasons, TaylorMade has launched MySpider, MyMD2 and MyTP (putter) custom programs. Right out of the gate, it’s adding the MySIM2 custom driver program.
And, yes, it’s like Callaway’s UDesign but different (if only because of what you can customize). Frankly, I don’t care who did it first. What shocks me is that not everyone does it.
By now, the ground rules for custom programs are pretty well defined so a good bit of the options should be familiar. The difference maker, in my opinion, is the aluminum ring which makes things a bit more interesting.
Billed as a complete customization, here are your options:
Aluminum Ring – Color options include red, blue, gold, orange, green, silver, black and light blue.
- Topline Paint Color – Chalk or matte black.
- Crown Decals – Color options include red, blue, gold, orange, green, silver, black and light blue.
- Sole Decals – Color options include red, blue, gold, orange, green, silver, black and light blue.
- Face Pin – Color options include red, blue, gold, orange, green, silver, black and light blue.
Available in eight, nine and 10.5 degrees for SIM2 with a 12-degree option on SIM2 MAX. The SIM2 MAX D is not offered through the MySim2 program.
Shaft and grip will be customizable as well. Pre-orders start Jan. 19.
MySim2 prices start at $629.99
TaylorMade SIM2 Drivers – Final Thoughts
On its face, the TaylorMade SIM2 driver isn’t much different than SIM. Actually, the face itself is quite a bit different. What I meant to say is that while the SIM2 drivers are visually similar to SIM, significant changes have been made both around and under the hood.
The design itself pops so there’s little doubt in my mind that SIM2 will be among the top-selling models in 2021. (I’m again picking TaylorMade as the No. 1 driver at retail.)
That’s all well and good but I’m more interested in where TaylorMade goes from here. I get the sense that with SIM2, TaylorMade is building towards something bigger.
Is TaylorMade’s SIM-iest driver yet to come?
TaylorMade SIM2 Pricing and Availability
TaylorMade SIM2, SIM2 MAX and SIM2 MAX D drivers have a retail price of $529.99. Full retail availability begins Feb. 19.
For more information, visit TaylorMadeGolf.com.
Tony is the Editor of MyGolfSpy where his job is to bring fresh and innovative content to the site. In addition to his editorial responsibilities, he was instrumental in developing MyGolfSpy's data-driven testing methodologies and continues to sift through our data to find the insights that can help improve your game. Tony believes that golfers deserve to know what's real and what's not, and that means MyGolfSpy's equipment coverage must extend beyond the so-called facts as dictated by the same companies that created them. Most of all Tony believes in performance over hype and #PowerToThePlayer.
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