Nike Vapor Vapor Pro Irons

Nike Vapor Pro irons
Nike Vapor Pro irons. (Nike)

Since Rory McIlroy used a Nike MM Proto 2-iron at the Scottish Open and at Royal Liverpool in his victory at the 2013 Open Championship, there has been speculation about what MM stands for.

We now know it stands for Modern Muscle, an overarching design philosophy focused on weight distribution that runs throughout the Vapor line. 

In the Vapor Pro muscleback blades, the weight story is rooted in a tiny slug of tungsten secretly positioned in the back of Tiger Woods’ Nike VR Pro Blade irons. Those pieces of tungsten, weighing between 5 and 8 grams each, shifted the center of gravity (CG) in Woods’ irons slightly more to the toe side, directly into the middle of the hitting area, offsetting the weight of the hosel.

Don’t look for a tiny weight in old photos, because each was embedded in the back of the club before the chrome was applied, making it invisible.

Andrew Oldknow, Nike Golf’s director of design for equipment, said, “Our goal was not to give Tiger a new version of his old clubs, it was to give him a better version.”

There is no tungsten in the Vapor Pro irons Nike will make available to the public starting Oct. 31 (left-hand clubs will be available Nov. 28). They are forged from 1025 carbon steel for soft feel, but the CG has been shifted to mimic Woods’ irons by removing mass in the heel and repositioning it in the toe section.

“What we also found is that by thickening the body (in the toe section), we reduced vibrations in the top-toe area, which made a better-feeling product and made it sound different, which made it perform better,” Oldknow said.

He went on to say that the Vapor Pro irons, which will be available for $999 with True Temper Dynamic Gold shafts, produce about 1.7 yards more distance and feature a moment of inertia (MOI) that is 10 percent higher than the VR Pro Blades they replace.

Make no mistake, these are designed for elite players with fast swings who want to maximize control and feel. They are not intended to be as powerful or forgiving as the other clubs in the Vapor line.

Show Hide