The History of TaylorMade Drivers

By Contributing Writer

TaylorMade pioneered the construction of metal-headed woods, specifically drivers, and revolutionized the concept of putting game-improvement technology into the hands of all golfers.


Gary Adams founded TaylorMade Golf in 1979 after realizing that the new two-piece golf balls flew farther and straighter when hit by metal-headed clubs than by those made of wood. Adams hired two employees for his plant in McHenry, Illinois, and they filled $47,000 worth of orders in their first year.

Early Success

Ron Streck won the 1981 Houston Open using the first TaylorMade driver. Nicknamed the "Pittsburgh Persimmon" for its steel construction, the driver also helped Jim Simons win the 1982 Bing Crosby National Pro-Am. Other pros noticed, and by 1985 more PGA and LPGA pros used TaylorMade than any other kind of driver.

Technological Advancements in the 1980s

In 1983, TaylorMade improved clubhead aerodynamics by adding dimples to its Burner driver. Two years later, the Burner Plus featured a stainless-steel head filled with foam measuring 144 cubic centimeters in size.

Advancements in the 1990s

The Burner Bubble, with its distinctive bubble shaft and copper-colored head, arrived in 1995. A year later, a titanium version, the Ti Bubble 2, allowed the size of drivers to nearly double to 285 cc.

Advancements in the 2000s

In the new century, TaylorMade focused on matching clubs to golfers. The 300 Series provided three different drivers to match golf's three main swing types. The r7 quad featured movable weights. By 2009, TaylorMade offered drivers with adjustable shafts and loft angles. TaylorMade drivers rank as the best-selling drivers worldwide and the most popular drivers on the PGA Tour.

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