Today I’ll be reviewing the Callaway MAVRIK MAX hybrid, a gold medal winner on the 2020 Golf Digest Hot List.
With a larger body, deeper CG, and higher MOI, the MAX takes the MAVRIK hybrid to a new level of forgiveness over the standard model.
Just how good is the performance of the MAVRIK MAX hybrid? Is it worth putting in the bag and should higher handicaps choose it over other models?
Read on to find out everything you need to know to make an informed decision.
What are the reviews like?
It’s apparent that the MAX really does what it claims to do in terms of launching the ball high.
What People Like
- more forgiving and high-launching than the standard model
- still superb distance
- straight ball flight
- very easy to hit and get close to the pin
What People Don’t Like
- expensive like the other MAVRIK hybrids
- skilled players will have a hard time shaping the ball
What are the features?
The MAVRIK MAX has most of the same features as the standard MAVRIK hybrid:
- A.I.-Designed Flash Face Architecture: the Flash Face SS20 is made using a high-strength steel and is uniquely designed for each loft and model. It maximizes ball speeds and further optimizes performance.
- Face Cup: allows the face to flex and produce even more ball speed.
- Jailbreak Technology: titanium bars vertically connect the crown and sole, placing more impact load on the face and increasing ball speeds.
- Squared-Off Toe: designed to inspire confidence, enhance control and distance, and promote more of an iron-like feel.
The key differences lie in the head size, center of gravity, and available loft options.
First, the MAVRIK MAX has a larger footprint meant to inspire confidence and offer more forgiveness; this is typical as you move farther down the game-improvement spectrum.
Next, the CG is positioned deeper in the head to increase launch, increase MOI (and hence mis-hit forgiveness), and improve stability.
Lastly, the MAX has more high-loft options than the standard and Pro models. All of this is meant to make it as easy as possible for higher handicaps to get the ball up in the air.
The MAVRIK MAX hybrid is available from 3H-8H, over a loft range of 19° to 33°.
The stock graphite shaft is the Project X Catalyst HL 55/65/75 (same as the standard). There are at least 25 custom shaft options and over 100 different grips to choose from, and you can customize the length and lie angle.
Full information on the hybrid, shafts, grips and customization options can be found on the Callaway website.
Below are the specs of the MAVRIK MAX hybrid. Click to enlarge.
How does the hybrid perform?
When it comes to Callaway’s “game-improvement variations” of woods or irons, I find that it’s either hit or miss. Some MAX models aren’t worth considering, while others are even better than their standard counterparts.
In my opinion, the MAVRIK MAX hybrid is a hit.
One of the things the standard MAVRIK hybrid was lauded for was its incredible distance and hot face.
The MAX retains this, but with a higher launch and slightly higher spin. This means that you typically get a little less carry (maybe 5-10 yards or so), but in the right conditions, even better stopping power into greens.
The distance of the MAX is about what I expected it would be given the knowledge of how the standard model performs. In fact, I could say that it even exceeded my expectations slightly because I thought the deeper CG would be more detrimental to the distance.
It’s worth noting that those who might have struggled to get enough height on their shots with the standard model could see substantial distance gains with the MAX.
Loss of ball speed on off-center hits is similar to the standard MAVRIK, which isn’t surprising given that the technologies (Face Cup, Flash Face, etc.) are essentially the same.
Directional forgiveness is where the MAX has a clear leg up. You aren’t going to go too far off line unless you hit a horrible shot. My moderate mis-hits were usually still able to hit the green.
Overall, forgiveness is excellent and among the best that you can find in a modern hybrid today.
Normal ball flights with the MAVRIK MAX hybrid are straight with a little more height than the standard model.
The spin rate is a touch higher, but not as high as I thought it might be going into it — this is great because it effectively means you get a higher trajectory without losing hardly any distance.
The MAX also has great consistency and results are very repeatable.
Because of the high launch, it’s easy to get the ball in the air out of most lies including rough and fairway bunkers, but the large head can be a little clunky to work with.
Shaping the ball with the MAVRIK MAX is quite difficult, so shotmakers shouldn’t rely on it to navigate tough layouts.
What about look, sound & feel?
First off, the MAX is one of two hybrids in the MAVRIK line to have a squared off toe and squarish face, with the other being the standard model. The squarish profile is pretty obvious, and it’s something that is quite polarizing because many golfers prefer their hybrids to have the look and feel of their woods.
In comparison with the standard model, the MAX has a modestly larger footprint. Aside from that, it looks nearly identical, with the same sole design and MAVRIK colour scheme.
There’s something to be said about a large head inspiring confidence at address, but I think there’s a limit to that. In this case, when you set up behind the ball, it looks a little too much like a stronger wood for my taste.
The Sound & Feel
When you have an altered head size and CG location, there will be a difference in the sound & feel no matter how small.
Nevertheless, the MAX has a sound & feel that is very similar to the standard model. As I said in my review of that club, it should be very familiar to you if you’ve played a Callaway hybrid in the past, particularly one with SGI characteristics.
The feel is quite hot, with a muted “click” that you often get with a hybrid club. This feel is very consistent across the face so that even mis-hits can feel good.
Where should you buy this hybrid online?
For a limited time, you can order MAVRIK MAX hybrids with custom specifications (loft, length, lie angle, etc.) on this page on the CW website.
Alternatively, look at what’s available on Global Golf. The great thing about Global Golf is that they carry aged models at a sizable discount, and not just the models from the current and previous season.
The MAVRIK MAX hybrid is an excellent alternative option to the standard model, for those who want better forgiveness and even more help launching the ball.
The difference between the MAX and the standard model isn’t huge, but it’s enough to make it a viable option for high handicappers. If you feel more comfortable and perform better with the MAX in your hands, you should definitely run with it.
Conversely, skilled players should probably stay away from the MAX and instead opt for the standard or Pro model.
Have any thoughts or opinions about the MAVRIK MAX hybrid? Have you tried it? Leave a comment below.