The Wilson D9 Hybrid is aimed at providing distance and forgiveness together in one simple package, at a very attractive price point.
Having already tested the D9 Driver and D9 Irons last year, and really enjoyed using them, I wanted to put the D9 Hybrid through its paces to see whether it provided the same levels of forgiveness and consistency.
The D9 range stands for distance and so there is plenty of technology in there to help golfers generate ball speed and a high launch. Wilson have used a new generative design process in their woods, using computer modelling software to simulate different head variations to produce the best design possible.
For the first time, Wilson fairway woods and hybrids feature Variable Face Technology (VFT) made from Carpenter Steel which is thin and hot to provide fast ball speeds on strikes right across the face.
A progressive head shape means that the stronger lofted hybrids have an increased volume to aid forgiveness, while the weaker lofted have more face curvature to provide better consistency and accuracy.
Wilson D9 Hybrid Review
Looks and Feel
The D9 range of woods is a big improvement on the previous D7 in terms of looks in my opinion, and this continues with the D9 hybrid thanks to a smart, uncluttered black crown design.
There is perhaps a slight hint of offset at address, but nothing that would make you fear the left miss like you might feel with hybrids that are aimed more towards game-improvement.
The footprint is slightly larger than average but it's not too big, and this helps to provide plenty of confidence whilst I still felt that it was going to be workable too.
The sole of the club contains a couple of hints of the technology within the head whilst still retaining a simple look, with a smart dark blue and grey colour scheme. There is no adjustability in terms of loft and lie, but Wilson do offer four different lofts between 19 and 28 degrees if you're looking to fill a particular gap in your bag.
When hitting the hybrid, the sound was on the louder side compared to other hybrids I have used recently, although some people might like the reinforcement given by the 'ping' every time you hit it.
It feels fast and strong though, as if you didn't have to work too hard to get a decent pop off the face. This is actually something that I do like, as I don't often tend to swing at 100% so it's always a bonus if you feel like you aren't having to try too hard.
I tested the 19° D9 Hybrid using the Flightscope Mevo+ and the numbers produced were a little less impressive than the likes of the TaylorMade Stealth that I also tested earlier this year.
I would say that I wasn't swinging at my fastest during the data capture session so I feel like I could easily have eked a few more yards out if I needed to - something I saw on the course where I comfortably carried one shot onto the green from 205 yards.
The spin rates were a little more varied than I would like, an average of around 3200rpm wasn't too bad but some of my poorer strikes were up at 5000rpm which then affects distance, and leaves the ball more prone to the elements as I saw out on the course.
I was impressed with the left-to-right dispersion though, and found that this was an accurate hybrid despite the fact that it perhaps isn't the longest out there.
Out on the course I was really impressed with the performance of the D9 Hybrid and the word that I kept coming back to when trying to describe it was 'easy'.
The strike felt extremely reliable and I was confident of the ball launching easily pretty much every time without much effort, which is exactly the point of putting a hybrid in the bag. I hit shots from a slightly bare lie on the fairway and when the ball was sitting down in the semi rough and it still performed great.
Whilst Wilson Staff haven't shown any clear weighting towards the back of the head on the sole, I found that the hybrid launched high and the ball flight remained high on the course, which can be useful for those people who struggle to get the ball up into the air.
The downside of this is that you can lose a bit of distance on some shots like I saw when hitting off the tee into wind, as the ball tended to spin up a little too much and stall which left me with a longer approach shot in to the green.
Wilson D9 Hybrid Verdict
Having tested the D9 Driver and Irons earlier this year I was expecting the Hybrid to be good, and it didn't disappoint. The hybrid provided easy launch, plenty of forgiveness and enough workability from a smart looking package which should attract low and high handicappers alike.
With an RRP of £159 (although I have seen this available for less than £100 these days) the D9 Hybrid represents fantastic value for money as a long iron replacement. It will make your life easier and give you more consistency at the top end of your bag.
Whilst not the longest in terms of distance, it flew straight and was really easy to hit which is even more important when it comes to hybrids - you want them to fit into a gap in the bag where the long iron used to be rather than provide all-out distance.
Who Is It Aimed At?
Whilst Wilson's 'D' range of clubs is usually aimed more towards game improvement I could see this club having a pretty wide appeal from high handicappers all the way down to low single figure golfers. It launches high and is easy to hit, but the neutral look at address still make it a viable option.
Would I Use It?
For ease of use, forgiveness and looks, yes. But I found the spin was a little high at times which was costing me distance as the ball seemed to peak a little too high.
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