Best Golf Hybrid Clubs
A good hybrid is one of the most versatile and useful golf clubs you can put in your bag. They are designed as a more forgiving replacement for long irons and hybrids resemble smaller headed fairway woods. They are ultimately more forgiving and you can strike a hybrid from almost all lies to deliver a very punchy shot.
VIDEO: Matthew Moore tests all the leading golf hybrids
In recent years, many club manufacturers have experienced greater demand for custom fit irons in 5 to PW, with fewer golfers taking up the traditional option of carrying long irons in favour of hybrid clubs which can range in loft from 17 to 29 degrees. Many amateur golfers can benefit from carrying hybrid clubs, especially older golfers who no longer have the swing speed or strength to launch their long irons higher. Hybrids are also now more regularly seen on the professional tours too!
Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson are two Major Champions who have carried hybrids when course conditions required higher flighted softer landing approaches into par 5 greens. The hybrid has also largely replaced the ‘belly wedge’ or putt-like chip played with the leading edge of a sand wedge, as the most reliable play from collared rough or tight lies around the green.
You’ll have your own preferences in terms of how each hybrid looks and feels. There is always an element of subjectivity and personal preference in any club testing but we cross reference both our qualitative data (observations, feelings, notes) with our quantitative data (the launch monitor numbers) to reach our conclusions of what makes the best golf hybrids.
Some products are targeted at certain skills levels – but in this guide, we’ve brought you a range of our favorite hybrid clubs that cover a broad range of playing abilities. If you’re into finding more about the best hybrid clubs to use, you should also check out our guides on the best hybrid golf clubs for seniors (opens in new tab) and best hybrids for high handicappers. (opens in new tab) If you’re not completely sold on the idea of a hybrid and want something with more of an iron-like profile, then check out our best driving irons (opens in new tab) guide.
Best Golf Hybrid Clubs
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First up in this best golf hybrid clubs guide is the TSi2 from Titleist. Featuring the fastest hybrid face Titleist has ever made, the TSi2 delivers faster ball speeds and excellent forgiveness. The head is bigger than the lower spinning TSi3 but smaller than the TSi1, making it an extremely versatile hybrid suitable for golfers of all levels. A lower CG means that not only will golfers enjoy greater speed off the face, but they’ll have no trouble getting the ball in the air.
It comes in three different lofts – 18°, 21° and 24° – but thanks to Titleist’s patented SureFit hosel, golfers can take advantage of the 16 individual loft and lie settings available, something we found very useful when testing from round to round in ever-changing conditions. While the other two models offer something different, the TSi2 was the most consistent and easiest to hit, delivering excellent feel and inspiring loads of confidence. Combine it with one of the best Titleist drivers (opens in new tab) and you’ll no doubt be smashing the ball down the fairways.
Callaway (opens in new tab) released the Apex and Apex Pro hybrids in 2021 and, such is their popularity and overall performance, they have carried over into a second season. The Apex Hybrid features many of the same technologies as its predecessors but with upgraded Jailbreak Velocity Blades.
The Jailbreak blades are angled and more spread out than they have been in any model since this tech was first introduced in 2016. The result is more forgiveness across the face and more speed, particularly at the bottom of the club where golfers often mishit their shots. Plus, the blades also allow the Face Cup to flex more for consistent spin rates and therefore, flight. During our testing we found it to be very easy to launch, it felt solid to strike in a number of different conditions and lies, and also created a towering, rainbow-like ball flight that squeezes out as much yardage as possible.
One thing to note is the Apex Pro hybrid is aimed at lower-handicap players who prefer more of an iron look, but we really liked the overall performance on offer with the standard Apex model that is available in 3H through to 6H.
All the tried and tested TaylorMade hybrid technology is here again, from the V Steel sole to Twist Face and the Speed Pocket. What’s different in the Stealth Rescue is a new carbon crown construction. The lighter head lets engineers shift seven grams of weight lower in the head for a better CG (centre of gravity), easy launch and optimal forgiveness.
The sleek top line and carbon head do inspire confidence at address and we also found the Stealth Rescue easy to hit with a firmer feel off the high strength C300 steel face. This lead to great acoustics at impact and a stable penetrating trajectory. Indoors on a launch monitor, results were good compared to other leading brand hybrids, especially in terms of accuracy and dispersion. The Stealth Rescue wasn’t as long as other leading hybrids, but this didn’t worry us, especially as their is an excellent range of custom shaft options available so you can fine tune the set-up for distance gains. If you’re a fan of TaylorMade, why not pair this hybrid up with a set of the best TaylorMade irons (opens in new tab).
The Cleveland Launcher XL Halo Hybrid ranks as one of the most forgiving hybrids (opens in new tab) on the market and hence earned a spot in our Editor’s Choice Awards in 2022. (opens in new tab) Featuring an incredible amount of technology, the specific focus in the design process was to help golfers escape poor lies with power and accuracy.
The Halo features Cleveland’s XL head design which is larger than most hybrids. As well as the large head design, the hybrid has an MOI of 2,961 – the most ever in a Cleveland Golf hybrid. It also features great stability and resistance at the moment of impact, with three Glide Rails on the sole helping keep the clubface straight for better strikes, regardless of lie quality. It also scored high marks for its versatility, it’s easy to hit out of any lie, performs exceptionally well on mis-hits, and gets the ball up in the air quickly. So if you are in the market for a forgiving hybrid, this Halo model is definitely one to consider.
The Ping G425 hybrid has the same thin maraging steel face as its predecessor, the Ping G410. Generating high ball speeds, it also features Ping’s Facewrap design technology that works across the crown and sole of the club promoting an easy launch and longer shots. The G425 also comes with Spinsistency tech, which was launched last year and guarantees more consistent spin rates on shots struck out the bottom of the club, this is thanks to Ping modifying the roll profile on the clubface.
The alignment aid has also been upgraded, with three dots on the crown making it easy to line the ball up out the centre and, like all things Ping, the feel off the face is brilliant and extremely easy to hit. All of these positive benefits make it an option we would highly recommend for recreational golfers. It’s available in 2H through to 7H and each loft category is adjustable by up to 1.5°. We found it a little more tricky to flight low compared to some other models but it’s so forgiving and easy to hit that it’s comfortably one of the best hybrids on the market. If Ping is your brand, why not take a check out some of the best Ping fairway woods (opens in new tab).
In 2014, Callaway opened up a whole new market by introducing a long and forgiving forged iron for better players. Now, Callaway is attempting to create a new gear niche with the launch of its Apex UW (Utility Wood), a club that looks and flies like a fairway wood but offers the versatility and precision of the best hybrids.
Comprised of old-school looks, it is perhaps not obvious where the tech is until you reach the silver-grey soleplate that has a composite carbon-like appearance. On testing, it was exceptionally long, around 25 yards past similarly struck shots with other leading brand hybrids tested the same round. No matter the wind conditions, the Apex UW could even rival the best fairway woods (opens in new tab) on the market and was recently chosen for our 2022 Editor’s Choice Awards. (opens in new tab) No wonder so many Tour professionals have started putting this club in the bag as it provides top notch performance.
This is a classic looking hybrid that delivers a sleek and cool visual with a tour proven profile designed with golf purists in mind. It was long and accurate on test and Honma’s TW 757 proves that bigger is not necessarily better. New to 2022, these hybrids deliver promising ball speeds and higher launch thanks to improved Carbon Slot technology in their sole.
The club boasts progressive internal weights that are low in the club’s head and help you to reach faster ball speeds. It felt great on impact, delivering a firm yet soft feel and the lightweight maraging 455 Steel Cup-Face means this club is lively and responsive. The sound is high pitched, so isn’t the best for those who like a muted thwack through the ball, but is overall an excellent addition to the hybrid market and is one of the most forgiving hybrids (opens in new tab) we’ve tested.
A really impressive club from Cobra that provides a solution for golfers looking for a forgiving, accurate hybrid in their bag. Put simply, it’s super easy to hit and the adjustability allows you to create the ball flight you desire while also achieving competitive distance. We really like the matte finish on the crown and the grey strip at the front helps with alignment.
In the neutral weight setting (12g in the back centre position) the feel off the face is solid and powerful. It offers up a relatively tinny sound but catch one out the middle and you certainly know about it. The reward is a strong, towering flight that gently turns over from right to left. Distance wise, it was comparable with the Cobra Radspeed Hybrid (opens in new tab), which is no mean feat, and it seemed to be one of the most forgiving hybrids we’ve tested in recent times.
There’s a blend of old and new technology in this Cobra LTDx, which makes it an attractive club for anyone who can’t hit long irons high enough or struggle to play with those clubs from the rough. The LTDx hybrid is built with split rails on the sole which zip over tight turf and help glide through rough without any loss of speed. This hybrid is also fun to hit, with Cobra stating that it has replaced its E9 face with a variable thickness design called H.O.T Face and tuned it for better speed. It feels thin at impact, with it easier to pick off tighter and sloping lies.
In test, we mainly hit fades and if we did miss left, we pulled it. This comes partly down to the KBS PGR (Player’s Graphite Iron) shaft which has the tolerance of steel but the weight and playability of graphite. The only downside to this set-up is that the head feels light and we didn’t get a feeling of load at the top of the swing or any heft at address. If you’re looking for a highly playable hybrid that neutralizes your tendency to draw or hook the ball, this would be a great option.
This hybrid from PXG features clean and modern aesthetics that will appeal to the majority of players. It is a compact yet confidence-inspiring hybrid that combines aspirational aesthetics with a powerful performance – and is an excellent option for those in search of long game versatility.
What will also appeal is how long it is from toe-to-heel, whilst not being too bulky. Because of the design, it is quite shallow, which will provide the user with a versatile option that can be hit powerfully off the tee without being too big to use effectively from the rough. Where this hybrid excels is out on the course, performing superbly in windy conditions. Because it is so powerful to strike, you can use it from an array of different lies without sacrificing distance and, importantly, accuracy.
Much like the Great Big Bertha driver and fairway woods, these hybrids are Callaway’s best-of-the-best. They’re built with the DNA of a driver – meaning they’re designed to create exceptional ball speed and forgiveness on a wide variety of shots. A titanium clubface and body save weight and increase the moment of inertia, while the artificial intelligence-designed titanium face cup works with the internal ‘Jailbreak with Batwing Technology’ clubface reinforcement framework, to enhance ball speed across the face.
What’s more, it’s shaped like a refined fairway wood, and looks great behind the ball. The sole’s camber helps improve turf interaction, especially from difficult lies, thus, when it came to testing, we deliberately used it from a variety of lies – and even off the tee. How did it perform? Well, it worked rather flawlessly. It felt a lot like hitting a smaller version of the fairway wood and driver, in that the ball flight achieved good and fast trajectory without having to chase it . This was likely, thanks to dual tungsten weighting inside the clubhead. Lastly, the distance was impressive and, with the hybrid available in 3H through 8H, there is plenty of variety on show.
Mizuno’s CLK hybrid has been designed to offer golfers a versatile, high-performing connection between irons and fairway woods, and that’s exactly what it does. Thanks to the new Dual Wave sole technology, which gives the club a wider profile at address, we found it really easy to flight the ball high and attack tighter pin positions. There have also been several structural refinements to ensure a solid sound at impact, which is another performance aspect we really look out for.
We like how the wide, flat crown sits flush to the turf, which is sure to give many golfers that little extra confidence they need with a hybrid. Meanwhile, the CLK hybrid is available as a 2H through to a 5H and comes with an adjustable hosel that has eight loft and lie settings, making it extremely easy to set up exactly how you want.
Callaway released the Rogue ST Max hybrid in 2022 with a serious billing, calling it “the longest Rogue ST hybrid,” in “our fastest family of hybrids ever.” All the tour proven Callaway technology is built into this club, including a revamped Jailbreak ST system that pushes the two ‘batwings’ further towards the perimeter of the face for higher MOI, a more flexible face and better ball speeds.
This club delivered lots of the performance benefits you’ll want in a good hybrid. It flew with a powerful rainbow shaped flight and stopped quickly going into greens on long par 3 holes and tough par 4s.
The matte black looks premium. In terms of pure performance, it wasn’t the longest or fastest in the Rogue ST hybrid series but it was reassuringly straight with an excellent dispersion average, up there with the very best hybrids in our test. We love how consistent and forgiving the ST Max was. Couple that with great looks and Callaway’s reliability of performance, then it’s clear this hybrid would improve the play of a wide range of golfers.
Wilson’s D9 hybrid is packed with performance that makes it one of the easiest hybrids to hit on the market. It’s also an extremely nice-looking club that sits squarely behind the ball, inspiring confidence to perform your best. Milled using the same premium Carpenter Custom 455 steel used by Titleist in its hybrids, the face is hot and thin, delivering optimal feel and distance. This is enhanced by the Variable Face Technology for high ball speeds and launch angles.
It comes in a variety of lofts from 17° through to 31°, although there is no adjustability on the hosel. Each different loft option is also the correct length to help it fit seamlessly into your bag. An incredibly easy club to hit, this club really could suit every type of golfer if they can find the right specs for their unique game.
The Srixon ZX hybrid has a stepped crown that lowers the centre of gravity to optimise launch and increase MOI as well as helping with alignment. Its looks are almost a throwback to the original TaylorMade rescue clubs. Anyway, as Srixon says, it’s a ‘true player’s hybrid’, featuring a smaller head shape and square toe to provide more confidence at address. We really noticed this when looking down from up high.
Another thing we liked was the all-black face. It’s not uncommon among hybrids or clubs in general, but it did make it just that little bit more appealing than the more traditional silver-faced models. Featuring Srixon’s Rebound Frame Technology, the ZX provides increased ball speed and distance from a variety of lies. One thing we would point out is that it is only available as a 2H, 3H or 4H and doesn’t come with the option to adjust the hosel. However, if you find yourself in the market for a 16°, 19° or 22° club that you want in the bag to replace a long-iron, then you could do far worse than the Srixon ZX.
How we test hybrids
When it comes to Golf Monthly’s testing procedure (opens in new tab), we use the same ethos and methodology for all golf products to make sure they are as insightful, honest and as comprehensive as possible. When it comes to testing for the best hybrids, we usually attend product launches so we can meet with the manufacturer’s R&D experts to understand the new technology.
After we have an understanding here, our first port of call when hitting clubs is usually the indoor simulator at Foresight Sports, where the team can test in a controlled environment using premium balls and the GCQuad launch monitor. We also use TrackMan at golf facilities across the UK. With hybrids, we look to assess how each club performs in terms of its forgiveness, shot shaping abilities and how much distance it provides off the tee. We also look to test hybrids on different lies to gain a better understanding of how each club performs around the course.
How to choose the right hybrid
It’s one thing knowing what the best golf hybrid clubs on the market are, and something else entirely choosing which model to add to your bag. So, how do you make such a decision?
In an ideal world, a properly executed club fitting will provide the answers. However, if this isn’t possible for whatever reason, we have a few tips.
How a hybrid performs is the most important factor. You are looking for versatility that will improve your scores and help you out of trouble in a range of on-course situations. We would recommend trying out hybrids off the tee, from the rough, fairway, around the green and even from the middle of low-lipped fairway bunkers. You need to gauge how well they perform for you and a demo day is an ideal opportunity to do the kind of testing you need to be sure a hybrid is right for you.
A thorough test can inform how some clubs feel during the golf swing and most importantly at impact. Some models sound loud at impact, others are more muted. Some will feel like the contact is a dense thud, others will feel hot and energetic off the face. Feel is entirely subjective and personal to the player. Again, we recommend hitting some models indoors and outdoors, so you can have an idea of what you like and dislike.
With all golf clubs you need to like how they look, especially at address, because you don’t want to be distracted by a club you really don’t enjoy looking at. Take some time to shop around, feel the club in your hands and see if you like the way it looks and feels at address. Does it match the rest of your set-up, will you feel completely comfortable putting it in the bag? As much as it may seem vain to judge a club on looks, it can increase your confidence on-course if you love the look of your hybrid when you pull the headcover.
Not every hybrid is the same. Some are more wood-like in appearance, whilst others have a higher toe and are designed to look more like an iron. Some are also more rounded and more square so getting the clubs in your hands will allow you to see what you like and what you don’t.
The penultimate factor you should consider is budget. Given the number of hybrids available on the market, you can find a quality club at most price points and to suit almost any budget. If you want a premium brand model then you can get one, or if you want to save money, there is usually value for money to be found if you are happy not to own a club by a marquee manufacturer.
We hate to sound like a broken record but go to a range and try some out. Most places still tape clubs up and let you conduct your own range test. It won’t be as thorough as a custom fit but you can draw some conclusions. For example, you’ll be able to get a sense for the weight and looks of the club and whether the shaft suits the way you swing it.
Hitting some shots, even with tape on the face, will also give you an idea of how easy each hybrid is to hit and get airborne. For higher handicappers, this will likely be very helpful. Better golfers may be in the market for something that’s more workable and therefore would be suited to something with plenty of hosel adjustability. Ultimately, it depends on what aspect(s) of performance you value above all else and which hybrid is able to tick the most boxes for your game.
If hybrids aren’t your cup of tea we have plenty of information on our website on the best golf irons (opens in new tab), best fairway woods (opens in new tab) and best wedges (opens in new tab) that’ll help you get around the course.
What is the difference between a hybrid and a rescue?
There is next to no difference between a hybrid and a rescue because a rescue club is actually just the TaylorMade version of a hybrid.
What is a hybrid golf club good for?
There are two clear benefits to a hybrid when answering this question. First the best thing about a hybrid is that it combines the best bits of a fairway wood and long iron into one convenient club. They help players get the ball in the air easier and help fill the gap between woods and irons in relation to distance gapping.
Hybrids are designed with a lot more perimeter weighting, which is possible because the heads are so much bigger. The hollow design also allows for a lower and deeper centre of gravity that encourages a higher launch, making it much more versatile from tricky lies.
Therefore, for the average golfer liable to mishits and drives finding the rough, a hybrid can be handy for getting back into position. Another big benefit to the hybrid is versatility. Not only can hybrids be used to help in the rough, from the fairway and off the tee, but also around the green too.
What is the difference between a hybrid and a fairway wood?
Hybrids are smaller than fairway woods in terms of clubhead size and shaft length, because they are designed to fill the gap between woods and long to mid irons. Hybrids are usually easier to hit than woods because of the lower centre of gravity and denser head construction and because the club design encourages you to hit down on the ball, in the same way you would with an iron.
Hybrid shafts are heavier than those in a fairway wood, with average weightings around 80 to 90 grams, which makes them easier to swing with more control. Lighter and longer fairway wood shafts can often tempt players to try and swing too fast resulting in inconsistent strikes and a lack of accuracy compared to hybrids.
Which hybrids should I carry?
This is completely personal and comes down to the way you choose to set your bag up. If you use several long irons and struggle to hit them, then a hybrid could definitely help fill these spots in the bag. Alternatively, if you are not getting on well with your five-wood, then hybrids come with similar lofts so can replace it easily.
Senior golfers and women golfers often favour hybrids that replace longer and mid irons in the bag, because they are more playable and offer more distance than their iron equivalents. This is why you will see hybrids available in lofts and head sizes ranging from 2H to 7H, or 17° to 29°.
Do professionals use hybrid golf clubs?
Interestingly, with the growth in hybrid technology over the last few years, more and more professionals are starting to put hybrids in their golf bags now because they are significantly easier to hit than long irons, and they tend to help get the ball in the air easier which can be very useful when hitting out of rough or hitting second shots into par-5’s.
Top players like Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson have both put hybrids into the bag at one time, and the clubs usually come in and out of the bag dependent on course, setup and conditions.