Earlier this year Cobra introduced an update to their Snakebite wedges, featuring new technologies which are designed to give golfers even more spin around the greens.
This latest range features three different models - a standard Snakebite, Snakebite One Length, and a new game-improvement Snakebite-X.
I put the new Snakebite wedge to the test on the golf course to see if it could compete with the likes of the Vokey SM9, TaylorMade MG3 and Callaway Jaws wedges at the top of the market.
The Snakebite wedges use an improved CNC milling process on their grooves to tighten groove tolerances and maximise groove volume, which Cobra says has produced the most 'aggressive' groove to date.
A new face milling pattern is also designed to produce 50% more spin in wet conditions than the previous Snakebite wedge.
This new Groove Technology increases the depth of the grooves by 11% and sharpens their edges by 40%, delivering maximum spin to the ball. The groove lengths and groove depths are optimised for each wedge loft.
The 48-54 degree lofts have a traditional groove length with narrower and deeper grooves for consistent spin and flight on fuller shots. The 56-60 degree lofts have full-face grooves and wider and shallower grooves to maximise spin on shots with an open face.
The 58 and 60 degrees also feature a new versatile notch design, moving the notch further towards the heel to improve the club's interaction through the turf or sand.
The Snakebite is available in both a chrome or black finish, and there are three different grinds available:
- Versatile: an all-round grind for medium to firm conditions, with toe, heel and trailing edge relief providing versatility to play shots with an open face.
Classic: best suited for full swings and longer pitch shots, it has a medium-width sole with high bounce and trailing edge relief for neutral to steeper swings.
Widelow: a wide, low bounce sole is ideal for soft bunkers and medium rough, preventing the leading edge from digging.
Cobra Snakebite 2023 Wedge Review
Looks and Feel
This time around the Snakebite has lost the 'King' from the name and from the back of the head, which has historically been reserved for their premium product line.
This is still Cobra's leading wedge model though, and it retains a similar look to the previous model, albeit with a slightly smarter design which reminded me a little of the Titleist Vokey SM8.
The big difference between Cobra's wedges and other brands on the market is the notch on the sole, which the brand say can help you to open up the club face for more manipulation.
There's a nice compact look down by the ball, the head is pretty traditional in it's shape with a slightly rounded leading edge whilst the full face of grooves is bound to fill plenty of golfers with confidence, particularly when faced with shots out of thick rough or bunkers.
It's not a particularly big head but I actually quite liked that as it made me think I was going to get more precision, particularly given the fact that these full-face grooves can sometimes make the face look massive and clunky on other wedges.
As soon as I picked the wedge up and started hitting some chips with it I noticed that it felt quite heavy, perhaps thanks to the 125g KBS shaft that was fitted with the wedge.
This might be more weighty than some golfers are used to but I actually liked this as it felt like it was going to stop the ball from going too high, and I'd much prefer a lower, checking ball flight than a higher one with my wedges.
Looks-wise there wasn't a huge change between the previous Snakebite wedges and the new model, instead it was more a case of refreshing the look and improving the performance from the grooves.
In terms of on-course performance I found that this theme continued, as the Snakebite seemed pretty similar to the previous version with a little more zip into the greens - essentially exactly what Cobra promise.
I tested this wedge using the classic grind which sat nicely by the ball and did give you chance to manipulate the head a bit, although it was said to be better suited for longer shots.
I found that I got my best results when hitting out of bunkers and thicker rough around the green, as it's here that you can really see the benefit of the full-face grooves.
On a couple of occasions I hit chip shots from the toe and they performed better than expected, because the grooves stretch right across the face and keep the spin up on what would usually be classed as a mis-strike.
I was only using the classic sole grind but I found it really easy to slide the clubhead under the ball on bunker shots and flop shots, getting it up in the air pretty easily.
The new milled face provided plenty of spin which is always good fun when you get a brand new wedge in your hands, and I could almost feel it ripping straight off the face which gives you plenty of confidence to be a bit more aggressive.
Similar to the last time I tested Snakebite wedges, I found that the full-face design and shaping made it harder for me to line up the ball on fuller wedge shots, while I felt like the sole interaction was better suited to shorter shots.
Testing the wedge in 56 degrees, I was very confident with it from within 50 yards but my results were less consistent from outside that mark.
Cobra Snakebite 2023 Wedge Verdict
Cobra's latest addition to their short game offering are an improvement on the previous Snakebite wedges in terms of looks and I found a little more spin too, which was useful as I tested them in pretty firm conditions after a few solid weeks of no rain.
They were excellent around the greens and surprisingly forgiving for a 'bladed' wedge, makes it so easy to pop the ball up and out of tricky lies with confidence.
I am still yet to be completely sold on the full-face idea in the higher loft wedges but I can see the benefit on shorter shots and in the bunkers. So if you're like me and you're not sure about using one for fuller shots, it may be worth looking at one for your highest lofted wedge to get you out of trouble.
Cobra might not be the first brand that you think of when considering wedges but I can safely say that their offering can more than compete with the bigger brands, and though the RRP of £129 is £20 more than last time, it's still good value.
Would I Use Them?
As a lob wedge I think they could be a good addition to the bag, reserved for bunker shots or shots around the green when there is little green to work with.
Who Are They Aimed At?
Despite being a bladed wedge the Snakebite should have a wide appeal due to the friendly sole shapes and variety of sole options, which make them a more forgiving option.
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