The TaylorMade M5 irons are their game improvement irons for single figure players and upwards. That may sound like a bit of an oxymoron, but even better players need some forgiveness and TaylorMade has been getting better in this sector, as the previous M3 irons showed.
The M5 irons take this to the next level as they cross to the promised land of speed and forgiveness in a compact head by using the Speed Bridge.
This bar across the back of the head connects the rear of the cavity to the topline in order to stiffen the chassis, which in turn improves ball speed and sound.
The Speed Bar enables TaylorMade to use the same Thru-Slot they had in the P790 iron, which enables the face to hinge from the top and flex more.
Unlike the P790, there is no foam inside, but instead there is a Hybrar damper in the sole behind the face. This is activated by being compressed at impact and it modifies the sound waves so you go ‘that feels good’.
The Speed Pocket is a different type of slot to the M3 irons as it is shorter and a proper cut through, whereas the previous version looked more like an accordion on the inside.
This saves weight that can then be moved lower and further back to give the launch to go with the extra ball speed.
Taking the M5 irons on GC Quad, you can see that whilst the ball speed was similar, the stiffer frame was creating less spin and that saw a small distance gain.
This puts the M5 6-iron a bit behind the 1.5º stronger lofted M6 iron version. The M6 is also more forgiving, hence the faster ball speed and more distance.
In order to keep the peak height the same the M5 lofts are 0.5º stronger than M3 to accommodate the different launch conditions.
The M5 is obviously a smaller profile than M6, but it is also slightly more compact than M3 with less offset and a thinner topline, although you hardly notice.
Like the M3, there is a leading edge grind to improve contact with the turf, which helps to reduce the bounce a little, but I think it works very well.
Even with the compact head size, this is a forgiving iron. The high density tungsten on the inside helps to position the CG of the head more towards the centre to improve the MOI and keep your mis-hits going straighter.
The sound and feel was excellent right through the set, with the 4 and 5 iron maybe starting to give off the odd hollow note, but that is being picky. When you get to the forged short irons the feel is very solid, giving you plenty of control.
Higher single figure players could also consider putting in the M6 4-iron as it is the same loft and will give you that extra margin for error.
TaylorMade M5 Irons Verdict
I have to say that I really like the TaylorMade M5 Irons. They offer better players the speed of P790 irons, with the forgiveness of a cavity back design, for the same price as the M3 irons, making them a compelling choice.
They look clean, compact and sharp and the feel is everything better players will want. Those who have been used to forged irons could easily transfer into the M5 irons without having an issue with the sound.
For me this is one of the stand out products of the M5 & M6 range this year, so go check them out.