Cleveland Launcher XL2 Driver (My Honest Review)

Your golf experts: Jordan Fuller & John Marshall.
Updated February 15, 2024. This article was thoroughly audited by multiple golf experts and coaches for its accuracy. You can read more about our rigorous testing protocol here.

The Cleveland Launcher XL2 driver is getting a lot of hype after being named to Golf Digest’s 2024 Hot List.

Touted as a powerful, muscular golf club, the XL 2 also delivers incredible forgiveness with a high, smooth launch that goes for miles.

At a very affordable price point, the XL 2 offers value plus performance. Featuring an adjustable hosel and counterbalance weight in the handle, it is ready straight from the box to blast drives down the fairway.

But is it right for your game?

In this Cleveland Launcher XL2 Driver review, I’ll provide a first-hand look at its features and benefits, plus let you know what I didn’t like about the driver.

This honest review will provide you with all you’ll need to make an informed decision on whether the XL 2 can improve your performance off the tee box.


Cleveland Launcher XL2 Driver

Best Cleveland Driver for Mid Handicappers

Check Price on PGA Tour Superstore

Specifications

  • Loft: 9°, 10.5°, 12°
  • Lie: 58.5°, 60°
  • Shaft Length: 45.5”
  • Flex: A, Regular, Stiff
  • Swing Weight: D2, D3

Shaft Type 

  • Mitsubishi Tensei AV Series Blue 55 (Stiff, Reg) 
  • Aldila Ascent PL 40 (Stiff, Reg, A)
  • Grip Type: Lamkin Crossline 360 (50-gram)
  • Price: $449.99

Pros

  • Superb forgiveness with a flexible face
  • Oversized head delivers power
  • Adjustable hosel offers flight customization
  • Very affordable price point
  • High performer with length and accuracy

Cons

  • Not visually appealing
  • Lacks solid workability
  • Thin, aluminum sound at impact

In-Depth Cleveland Launcher XL2 Driver Review

cleveland launcher xl2 driver parts

How does the Cleveland Launcher XL2 Driver look?

I’ll admit, the Launcher XL 2 isn’t winning any beauty pageants. The blue, silver and black color scheme feels rather sloppy at first glance.

But once you start looking at the driver at address and from the side profile, it definitely checks all boxes for a top-tier driver.

For golfers, performance matters over looks, and once you start hitting this outstanding driver, you’ll quickly forgive Cleveland for the designers’ sins.

How does the Cleveland Launcher XL 2 Driver feel?

The XL 2 is quite smooth at impact. With the oversized head and broad sweet spot, the driver’s forgiving nature helps shave any rough edges from the club’s feel.

Having the counterweight in the grip certainly helps keep the club steady on the takeaway and maintains stability as you bring the club back to the golf ball.

When it comes to sound affecting feel, there’s an aluminum sound as the ball contacts the face, which might distract some golfers, but it takes nothing away from how great this club minimizes vibration.

What handicap is best for the Cleveland Launcher XL 2 Driver?

I believe this driver works best for mid-to-high handicappers. Due to its limited workability, I don’t see it helping low handicappers.

The XL 2 works best when you need high, long, and straight, but the driver is less responsive when you need a draw or fade.

Since most golfers need the long and straight over the right to left, the XL 2 plays very well, and with the lower price point, it works great for golfers on a budget.

The adjustable hosel does deliver some customization, but that comes more in the way of ball height rather than crafting a side-to-side shape.

How does the Cleveland Launcher XL 2 Driver perform?

The Cleveland Launcher XL 2 driver is big, clunky, and has a strange design, but I have to say the club is quite charming, and I really love how it performs.

Roughly $150 less than the top drivers, the new Launcher provides powerful energy transfer to the golf ball with all the forgiveness you could possibly need.

When it comes to evaluating dispersion, I felt I could unleash my maximum swing speed without worrying the ball would fly far off the intended path. The ball flight is relatively high and straight with dependable flight.

Moving onto forgiveness, the driver certainly maintains ball speed on toe hits. I didn’t see much distance loss when the ball made contact outside the sweet spot.

The face flexibility also does a solid job of absorbing errant contact to reduce side spin to keep the ball on target.

If you have a fast swing speed but are a little reckless with your consistency, the Launcher XL 2 could transform your miss-hits. Its playability remains unmatched among the best drivers available to amateurs.


Other Cleveland Launcher XL 2 Driver Models

Cleveland Launcher XL 2 Draw Driver

Check Price on PGA Tour Superstore

With healthy slice correction, the XL 2 Draw driver delivers a solid all-around experience for golfers who need to reduce that nasty side spin.

This driver comes equipped with heel-biased shaping and an internal heel weight that helps square the face through the impact zone.

The eight-gram counterweight carries over from the standard XL 2 driver to provide better balance, giving the golfer more control on the downswing.

As a result, you’ll get more power focused on the golf ball, where you need it to produce those stunning high bombs down the fairway.

A gold medal winner on Golf Digest’s 2024 Hot List, the Launcher XL 2 Draw also offers an adjustable loft of 9 to 12 degrees.


Cleveland Launcher XL2 Women’s Driver

Check Price on PGA Tour Superstore

Outfitted with the Aldila Ascent Ladies 40 shaft and a loft of 12 degrees, the XL 2 for women golfers provides high launch and extended carry.

All of the best features of the standard XL carry over to the women’s model, especially the Mainframe XL Face, which utilizes a variable-thickness pattern that moves weight deep and low in the face for additional forgiveness and improved consistency.

Featuring a 12-position adjustable hosel, this driver provides customization to frequent golfers who like to tinker with their settings to produce fades and draws on command.

A lightweight and agile oversized driver, the XL 2 for women delivers stability you can count on.


Cleveland Launcher XL2 Women’s Draw Driver

Check Price on PGA Tour Superstore

The draw version of the XL 2 Women’s Driver comes with the feather-light Aldila Ascent Ladies 40 shaft and a 12-degree loft on the face.

The Lamkin Crossline 360 grip, with its tackiness and durability, also allows golfers to swing hard.

The driver also features premium flexibility along the hitting area that improves accuracy to help you hit more fairways.

Cleveland has tailored this draw driver to help boost distance with higher launch and better rollout. The streamlined sole increases swing speed and the high MOI keeps the face stable through the impact zone.


My Honest Verdict

Cleveland’s improvements with the XL 2 over the XL make the new driver one to watch. On the range, I was able to hit repeatable baby draws with high launch and long, extended carry that lit up the Trackman.

I love how flexible and forgiving the face performs, as I could easily maintain ball speed, even on toe impacts.

Admittedly, several other drivers look better than the XL 2 regarding appearance, but the Cleveland driver can hang with the best of them when it comes to performance.

In the end, I’m asking you not to judge a book by its cover because, for the price in relation to results, the Launcher XL 2 driver remains one of the best deals on the market.