What are the best hybrid golf clubs in 2023? Whether you are after distance, forgiveness, or an all-rounder, our test to find the top-performing golf rescues has you covered.
With so many new clubs released each year, it can be hard to Identify which models are best for your game, especially with every manufacturer making technology and performance promises. Thankfully you can rely on Today’s Golfer to simplify things for you with our annual data-led test helping to whittle 2023’s models down to the best hybrids for your game and money.
Even if you’re using the best golf irons, hybrids and rescue clubs are fantastic options to replace those hard-to-hit longer clubs. Or, if you really struggle with your irons, you could replace almost all of them, with many brands now creating hybrids right up to a 7-iron alternative.
Hybrids are one of the most versatile and useful golf clubs. They are a more forgiving replacement for long irons and look like fairway woods with smaller heads. Unlike longer irons, hybrids are designed to be used from almost any lie, and as well as approach shots they can be used for playing low shots out of trouble and chipping around the greens.
The hybrid golf club shortlist
Hybrids have Major pedigree
Gone are the days when hybrids and rescue clubs were for beginners and amateurs. Some of the world’s best players, including Major champions Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson, have used hybrids at the world’s biggest tournaments so they are more than worthy of your consideration.
We tested 24 hybrids and five utility irons aimed at all standards of golfer and used our launch monitor data to identify the best of 2023.
As always, we’d recommend that you use our guide to the best golf hybrids to help narrow your shortlist down before heading to your pro or nearest golf facility and getting fully fitted for your clubs. That’s the only way to optimize new models for your game.
And if you want to see what the best clubs were from previous years (and potentially save a bit of cash) check out our tests of the best golf hybrids from 2021, and 2022. Or, if you’re not completely sold on the idea of a hybrid, perhaps consider one of the best driving irons.
Let’s dive into the best golf hybrids in 2023 to find out which models deserve a place in your golf bag.
Best Golf Hybrids 2023
The cheapest of our best gold hybrids excels for accuracy and dispersion
Best value for money
We can’t say the model was our fastest or longest – data was actually spot on our test averages for launch, spin, shot height, and descent angle – but Fli-Hi excelled in accuracy, and dispersion, key areas for amateurs. Hitting shots into just a 15.2 yds left to the right window, meant our test pro didn’t miss our target green set at a 240-yard distance. With just 9 yards difference between on and off-center hits the model also racked up the third smallest shot area of our entire hybrid test. Extremely impressive considering the £150 price tag.
Throw in a whole host of shaft options that cater to any speed of player and you’ve got a brilliant hybrid that can be dialed in to replace harder-to-hit clubs from the top to the middle of your bag.
- In the current climate, the JPX Fli-Hi is very good value for money
- There are plenty of shaft options to tailor the performance to your own game
- Lots of lofts mean you can even replace your 7-iron with a hybrid
- There’s no adjustable hosel, so any fine-tuning needs to be done by a fitter and the Mizuno factory
|Lofts:||4H -20° / 5H – 23° / 6H – 26° / 7H – 29°|
|Stock shaft:||Choose from 20 premium options|
A great-looking model, Stealth 2 is the longest-carrying hybrid of 2023
Best for distance
As has been the case for several years with TaylorMade hybrids this is a great-looking mid-width body model, and thanks to a new carbon fiber crown golfers can expect a fraction more forgiveness than previous models. With three Stealth 2 hybrids available though it’s really important to select the model that best suits your game.
This Stealth 2 model is a flat-out distance machine, it’s for golfers who sweep hybrids off the deck like a fairway wood. Where the narrower body Stealth 2 Plus, which produced 2mph faster ball speeds (at 146mph it was our fastest hybrid), but 600 RPM more spin, flies a fraction higher and descends onto the green much more like an iron. The model that should be pinging the radar of lots of club golfers though is the new Stealth 2 HD. Our data shows it launches and flies higher, and spins more (800 RPM more) than both the standard and Plus model, traits that will help average-speed golfers keep shots in the air for longer to maximize distance, and help stop shots once they hit the green.
Read our full TaylorMade Stealth 2 hybrid review
- You’ll struggle to find a more powerful hybrid
- Three different Stealth 2 hybrids mean you can dial in the ball flight and forgiveness level you desire
- A brilliant option for golfers who sweep hybrid shots off the fairway and don’t engage the turf
- There’s no adjustable hosel to allow for fine-tuning
|Lofts:||3H – 17° / 4H – 22° / 5H – 25° / 6H – 28° / 7H – 31°|
|Stock shaft:||Fujikura Ventus Red|
G430 is adjustable, fast, long, and boasts a friendly shape
Best for forgiveness
Apart from the really attractive and friendly mid-width head shape we also like how golfers get six different shaft options, this model can suit a very wide audience of different player types. Apart from posting our 2nd fastest ball speed (145.1mph) the G430 at 226 yards was our 4th longest hybrid this year. At nearly £300 a pop they’re not cheap, but irrespective of speed if you’re intent on sorting the top end of your bag this year, the G430 will definitely help.
Read our full Ping G430 hybrid review
- An adjustable hosel lets you dial in loft and lie
- The High Launch model is brilliant for slower-speed players
- A lovely neutral shape is confidence inspiring at address
- It’s not really a drawback but thanks to the multitude of shaft, loft and adjustable hosel options you’ll need a fitting to find your best set-up
|Lofts:||2H – 17° / 3H – 19° / 4H – 22° / 5H – 26° / 6H – 30° / 7H – 34°|
|Stock shaft:||Ping Alta Quick, Ping Alta Black, Ping Tour 2.0 Chrome|
Paradym is one of the easiest to hit and most adjustable hybrids of 2023
Best for adjustability
From a slightly weaker 21º model (our test loft is 20º), it’s unfair to expect the Paradym to keep up with some of the stronger loft and longer-hitting models, but hybrids are not all about distance. They should be easier to hit consistently than a long iron, and the Paradym utterly fulfills that brief.
If like us you’re impressed enough to explore the Paradym, make sure you have a fitter to help you figure out your best set-up. The X head is wider and spins a fraction more, which will be useful at lesser speeds. There’s also an adjustable hosel to dial the loft up or down and a draw setting that’s well worth considering.
Taking all of that into consideration, and with a wide selection of lofts to choose from, we’d genuinely be asking ourselves honestly this year which is the longest iron we hit with confidence? No matter whether that be a 6 or 7-iron there’s a Paradym hybrid waiting to replace everything else.
Read our full Callaway Paradym hybrid review
- The best-shaped hybrid Callaway have made for years
- The adjustable hosel allows you to encourage a draw bias
- The Aldila Ascent shaft makes the model easier to launch at lesser speeds
- If you’re buying more than one they become costly
|Lofts:||18° / 21° / 24° / 27°|
|Stack shaft:||Aldila Ascent PL Blue, Project X HZRDUS Silver|
Aerojet is fast, long, and a confidence-inspiring hybrid with a superb shaft as standard
Best for slower swing speeds
From a loft two degrees weaker than our fastest and longest golf hybrid the Aerojet produced 1.6 mph more ball speed and 5.5 yards more carry distance than our test average, which is seriously impressive. It’s also a beautiful-looking shape, that made us feel we could rifle it through rough, hit it from a tee, play it from short grass or even clip it off the top of the sand in a fairway bunker.
The icing on the cake though is the KBS PGI (Players’ Graphite Iron) shaft that comes as standard. It’s a consistent, reliable, and stable shaft. As long as you have reasonable levels of speed you won’t need additional help flighting shots higher to maximize distance, making this a cracking hybrid option.
- The KBS PGI shaft ensures the model is stable in the hands of decent players
- Cobra’s PWR-Bridge tech produces some very fast ball speeds
- A versatile hybrid option that will be equally effective from sand, rough, fairway, and tee
- There’s easier to flight hybrids for very moderate-speed players
|Lofts:||2H – 17° / 3H – 19° / 4H – 21° / 5H – 24° / 6H – 28°|
|Stock shaft:||KBS PGI|
The halo golf hybrid is easy to launch and an ideal option for average-speed players
Best for high handicappers
From a 18º model (2º stronger than our test loft), the Halo spun and flighted shots higher than our test average (shots also hit the green bang on the test average). This data spells out how easily the model will launch in the hands of everyday golfers and how quickly the ball will stop on greens when compared with a long iron.
A brilliant hybrid for average-speed players that aren’t too fussed about optimizing their equipment through a fitting.
Read our full Cleveland Launcher XL Halo hybrid review
- The wide body is super forgiving no matter where shots impact the face
- The lightweight and lively Cypher shaft is great at flighting shots regardless of speed
- A good choice for average-speed players that don’t want to get fitted
- Very difficult to fault when in the hands of average club golfers
|Lofts:||3H – 18° / 4H – 21° / 5H – 24°|
|Stock shaft:||Project X Cypher|
A compact and simple-looking players' hybrid that produced consistent numbers
Best players' hybrid
At 226 yards the model was our joint 4th-longest hybrid, and it tied 3rd best for protecting ball speed between on-and-off center hits. Despite its lack of size, it will be reasonably forgiving on the golf course.
There are a lot of great hybrids on the market this year and the ZX’s increased price puts it right along the TaylorMade Stealth 2. Therefore we reckon you’ll need to be a Srixon fan to warrant buying one in this year.
- We love the cracking little head shape
- A great blend of decent power and forgiveness so long as you have speed to launch shots high enough to maximize carry distance. A players’ hybrid
- Expect a very crisp impact sound
- With so many good hybrids on the market you’ll probably need to be a Srixon to buy one
|Lofts:||2H – 17° / 3H – 19° / 4H – 22° / 5H – 25° / 6H – 28°|
|Stock shaft:||Project X Hzrdus Smoke Red|
949x is the best golf hybrid for low dispersion and carry distance drop off
Best for accuracy
We like the compact head shape and it gives a solid impact sound and feel. The carbon crown frees up inefficient weight, which helped the model hit shots into our smallest dispersion area (105 sq yds), and produce our smallest carry distance drop-off (5 yards) between on and off-center hits. A seriously impressive result.
The brand sell directly from their website, or you can make a trip to their Hereford HQ for a fitting.
- Priced very attractively
- Our test highlighted good accuracy, but this can change on different test days
- The compact head will suit the eye of above-average golfers
- You predominantly need to buy online, so they are hard to try before you buy
|Lofts:||3H – 18° / 4H – 21° / 5H – 24° / 6H – 27°|
|Stock shaft:||Project X Graphite|
TSR1 is a high-launching and confidence-inspiring hybrid for moderate swing speeds
Best for launching the ball
It’s taken an age, but Titleist are now catering to very moderate-speed players. If you fit that profile the TSR1 has a confidence-inspiring wide-body appearance, and it will launch higher and spin shots more to keep the ball in the air for longer at lower speeds.
They’re not cheap, so it’s likely you’ll need to be a Titleist fan to buy it, but those who do will have a really easy-to-launch hybrid in their bag.
Read our full Titleist TSR1 hybrid review
- The wide body is a very strong option for moderate-speed players
- Great for landing shots softly on the green so the ball stops quickly
- Longer shafts help boost club speed and launch
- At this price and with so much adjustability ensure you get properly fitted to dial in the correct set-up
|Lofts:||4H – 20° / 5H – 23° / 6H – 26° / 7H – 29°|
|Stock shaft:||MCA MMT SPEEDMESH|
A low-priced hybrid from a premium brand with impressive shaft options
Best for look at address
Having established themselves as a premium iron company, PXG are now actively seeking out a decent-sized chunk of the millions of dollars spent by golf’s mass market.
And if you’re looking for a reasonably priced hybrid in 2023, then the PXG 0211 has to be on your radar.
Not our fastest, longest, or most forgiving, the 0211’s numbers stuck stubbornly around average across the board (223 yards carry distance). However, an array of no-upcharge shafts make this mid-narrow width hybrid a very solid option, no matter what your speed or ability.
Read our full PXG 0211 hybrid review
- Incredibly keenly priced
- Some good shaft options to tailor the club to your delivery and speed
- The mid-narrow head profile will appeal to a big audience of golfers
- Keep your eye on PXG’s website, prices are prone to fluctuate and fall
|Lofts:||3H – 19° / 4H – 22° / 5H – 25° / 6H – 28°|
|Stock shaft:||Project X Cypher|
Golf Hybrids Buying Guide
How we tested the hybrid golf clubs
We invited all of the major equipment manufacturers to submit their entire 2023 ranges for testing and created a controlled environment indoors at Keele Golf Centre and used a premium tour-level golf ball (Srixon Z-Star).
Using a Foresight GC Quad launch monitor, we collected a ton of data from every shot hit. Some sample delays meant several test sessions were pushed back to the final week of January to ensure none of the latest product launches escaped our test team.
We always test the same category of products on the same day to ensure all conditions and our test team’s swings are the same throughout.
Why did we use a Srixon Z-Star golf ball?
It would be easy to use just one test golf ball brand every year, but that inevitably leads to criticism for being too closely aligned to one manufacturer, especially if that brand’s equipment performs particularly well. To ensure fairness we like to switch manufacturers for the Top Gear test ball each year. For 2023 we’ve used the Srizon Z-Star.
The brand have just revealed their eighth-generation model, and Srixon General Manager Brian Schielke says “finding the right ball for your game is just as important as finding the right irons or driver, it’s the one piece of equipment you use on every single shot”.
Thanks to the previous Z-Star mopping up 31 wins across all tour global tours last year (that’s 15.5% of the wins available) we know the model is trusted by the world’s very best.
Why do we use a pro tester?
Speak to any golf club engineer about product testing and they all talk about needing a repeatable, reliable strike to offer any sort of valuable comparison. So, whilst we accept not all of the equipment included within our tests was designed for our test pro, what our data shows is a great comparison of how clubs in each particular category differ, which is hugely valuable in helping you narrow your choice as a consumer.
Not only is Neil Wain the perfect club tester because he loves hitting golf balls all day, but he is consistent in delivering accurate and reliable comparative data.
We would of course always recommend attending a proper fitting session, to ensure any purchase is tailored to your game.
See more about how TG tests golf clubs and other equipment.
How to choose the best golf hybrid for you
The minefield of which golf clubs to choose is often enough to get the better of any golfer, knowing what the best clubs on the market are, knowing what suits your game, and what best fits your bag and set up the best, all questions you should be asking before buying a new club.
With hybrids, it’s not always easy to get a full-fitting swapping in and out of shafts, as they’re not all adjustable at the head. However, I know we keep saying it but simply getting yourself down to the driving range and trying some out can be good enough. If you can’t secure a fitting most shops and clubs will let you hit a demo or tape up a hybrid for you so you can get an idea of how it feels, the weight of the club, and if the shaft is right for you.
With such a vast choice of hybrids available, there is a good quality club at every price point. As is the case with most equipment these days, golfers have a great selection of premium brands or more value-for-money choices. Whether you’re after a tour spec hybrid at over £200 or want a hybrid for less than £100 to save some money that’s not an issue.
Getting a fitting is key for all golf clubs and if not just hitting the club on the range can be great to answer most of your questions about the new club you’re trying. With hybrids, it’s about versatility on the course to help you lower your scores, a hybrid is a club that can be used in all matters of different situations on the golf course, so trying it in them situations first would be ideal.
To find the right hybrid for you, if you can hit some shots off of the tee, out of the rough, on the fairway, and even around the green, you will gauge if it’s right for your game. Most golf clubs and shops will host a demo day or most of the time if you ask politely you often borrow a club to take out for a round.
You won’t have a clue how the hybrid feels until you’ve hit it, the feel of a golf club is subjective to the golfer, with everyone demanding something slightly different from their clubs. Some hybrids will be heavier more like an iron and have a solid feel off the face and others being more like a wood and feel softer and faster off the face.
Not every hybrid looks the same there is so much variation, some have higher toes, are rounder in shape, have shorter faces, and adjustable heads. You have to like how a club looks behind the ball at address it’s that simple, if you don’t it can be off-putting and distracting which has a negative impact on your game.
Finding a club that suits your eye and suits your bag may seem a weird way to judge a product but confidence is king in golf and if you step onto the course confident in your equipment then that can help improve your game hugely.
Best Hybrid Golf Clubs: FAQs
What is a hybrid golf club?
In simple terms, a hybrid golf club is a mix of a fairway wood and an iron. They sit at the top of your bag after your woods replacing the longer irons. If you have a 3 or 4 hybrid then you would often take out the 3 or 4 iron to be replaced as the hybrid is easier to hit thanks to the shorter shaft and offset clubhead that leads to straighter shots.
Do I need both a 3 and 4 hybrid?
In terms of your whole bag setup, it may be more beneficial to carry an extra wedge rather than the extra hybrid as the 3 and 4 hybrids are so close in lofts. We’d recommend carrying one or the other, if you don’t have a 5 wood or a 4 iron then a 3 hybrid would work, on the other hand, if you don’t have a 7 wood or a 5 iron then a 4 hybrid would be the better choice.
When should you use a hybrid club?
As they often replace your longer irons this is the time you would usually pick one out of the bag. Hybrids can be hit from most places on the hole, from the fairway, the tee, and the rough. Hitting longer irons can be tough for many golfers and especially beginners so having a club that promotes a more natural sweeping swing helps make a more consistent strike with the ball.
Best Golf Hybrids 2023: The Data
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Today’s Golfer Equipment Editor
Simon Daddow is the Equipment Editor for Today’s Golfer. Having tested and played more than 10,000 clubs in his life, what he doesn’t know about golf clubs isn’t worth knowing.
He’s a specialist in all things metal having spent a large part of his career as a golf club maker and product development manager, and has worked in the golf industry for more than 30 years. Starting out as trainee professional at Downes Crediton GC where he learned the art of golf club making, he went onto work for Clubhaus Plc and Tony Charles Ltd as a golf club maker, and running Product Development at Benross Golf.
Simon also spent time working as a Sales Executive in Harrods’ golf department, even helping supply Sir Nick Faldo with personalized shirts in a last-minute emergency ahead of a flight to a tournament.
He joined EMAP Active (now Bauer Media) as Equipment Editor in 2006 and has worked for both Today’s Golfer and Golf World. Working alongside our test pro Neil Wain, Simon has made todays-golfer.com the most reliable source for golf club testing.
Despite his youthful looks, Simon has played golf for more than 40 years and plays to a handicap of 10. A lack of club speed means he’s short off the tee, but very handy from 125 yards and in.
He enjoys excellent relationships with the biggest names in the golf equipment industry, including PXG boss Bob Parsons and TaylorMade’s Tomo Bystedt and Adrian Rietveld.
Away from the course, Simon is a season-ticket holder at Peterborough United Football Club, attending games with his young son. He’s also a keen cyclist and enjoys working (and relaxing) at his allotment.
His favorite ever piece of golf equipment is the Callaway Warbird fairway wood and he considers the biggest technological advancement in the game to have been titanium driver heads.
Simon’s job means he plays regularly around the world, and rates Kingsbarns as his favorite course. He uses a PXG 0311 GEN6 XF driver, TaylorMade Stealth 2 HL (15º), Ping G400 (20.5º), PXG 0317 X Gen2 hybrid, PXG 0311 GEN6 P irons (6–PW), Cleveland CBX2 wedges (52°, 58°), Ping 21 Fetch putter and a TaylorMade Tour Response golf ball.