Cobra DARKSPEED LS Driver Review

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Release date

Jan 11, 2024





Loft options

8, 9, 10.5º

Pitchmarks Verdict

The Cobra DARKSPEED LS Driver shines with its blacked-out design, exceptional ball speed, and low spin, tailored for better players seeking maximum distance. Compact, aerodynamic head and extensive adjustability for fine-tuning. Ideal for golfers with fast, consistent swings.

Reasons to buy

Gorgeous blacked-out appearance

Excellent ball speed

Super solid feel

Very low spin

Reasons to avoid

Not the most forgiving head

Cobra’s latest driver lineup for 2024 is all about speed — or rather DARKSPEED. In their words: “groundbreaking aerodynamic shaping, precision PWR-BRIDGE weighting, and a refined H.O.T. Face design” combine to deliver the fastest driver they’ve built.

cobra darkspeed driver lineup
The Cobra DARKSPEED Max, X, and LS drivers.

There are three models in the Cobra DARKSPEED driver lineup:

DARKSPEED LSLowLowNeutral-FadeMedium
DARKSPEED XMidLowNeutralHigh
DARKSPEED MAXHighMidNeutral-DrawExtreme

The draw-biased MAX version has the highest MOI head shape offering maximum forgiveness and anti-slice accuracy. The X model is the all-rounder, producing a solid blend of speed and forgiveness that will suit the majority of players.

At the other end of the spectrum, the compact DARKSPEED LS is for better players seeking maximum speed and distance. It has the least forgiving head, but packs a mighty punch.

Blacked-Out Looks

The DARKSPEED LS is fully blacked out, with contrasting matte and gloss elements.

Cobra has given the DARKSPEED LS the full black-out treatment, and it looks incredible.

The monochromatic palette draws your attention to the unique sole geometry, including three adjustable weights and Cobra’s PWR Bridge. Contrasting matte carbon fiber and gloss black elements gives the LS a stealthy, yet highly premium aesthetic.

On the crown of the driver, Cobra has opted for a matte black look. I’m a huge fan of matte black drivers, as they absorb sunlight on brighter days and prevent unwanted glare.

Behind the ball, the LS profile looks slightly more compact than the larger and more forgiving DARKSPEED X and DARKSPEED MAX models. It’s less rounded than the other models, and the conical head shape sits very neatly behind the ball.

Speed & Feel

cobra darkspeed ls driver crown
The LS model features the most compact head shape in the DARKSPEED lineup.

With the LS, the aerodynamic head shape stems from Cobra’s quest for speed. The streamlined head was designed by aerospace engineers and the reasoning is simple: increasing the club head speed increases ball speed and distance.

Cobra also developed an updated H.O.T. Face design to deliver more efficient speed and spin across the clubface. While the head shape on the LS model leans towards speed over forgiveness, the improved face structure helps on those off-center strikes.

The DARKSPEED LS driver also feels fantastic when struck well. Audibly, it produces a reassuring low tone off the clubface with a solid and powerful feel.

Serious Adjustability

cobra darkspeed ls driver adjustability
The LS comes with adjustable heel, toe, and back weights to optimize spin and forgiveness.

The DARKSPEED LS offers serious scope for adjustability. While the X and MAX versions have only two adjustable weights, the LS is packed with heel, toe, and rear weights.

There are two 3g weights and a 12g weight. These are all identical in size and shape, which means you can easily swap them around to fine-tune performance:

  • Add the heavier 12g weight to the rear for more launch, spin, and forgiveness.
  • Add the heavier 12g weight to the heel for more draw bias.
  • Add the heavier 12g weight to the toe for more fade bias.

The LS model comes in 8, 9, and 10.5º lofts, and also features hosel adjustability. This allows you to alter the loft on the face and further play with draw and fade bias.

Performance Testing

cobra darkspeed driver face

In testing, the DARKSPEED LS driver posted seriously impressive numbers.

I tested the MAX, X, and LS models, outdoors and indoors. Each driver had a 10.5º head, standard hosel setting and stiff flex UST Mamiya LIN-Q M40X White shafts. I used Callaway Chrome Soft X golf balls, and the Rapsodo MLM2PRO launch monitor to capture data.

The table below shows the launch monitor data across all three models:

DARKSPEED ModelMAX (10.5º)X (10.5º)LS (10.5º)
Club Speed (mph)104.3105.2106.2
Ball Speed (mph)152.1151.1154.7
Launch (º)13.314.714.1
Spin (rpm)284322232118
Height (ft)104.099.396.1
Carry Distance (yds)255.7257.0260.1
Total Distance (yds)268.0269.9272.1
Dispersion (yds)18.323.826.7

Firstly, I saw notable club speed gains with the LS model versus the MAX and X. This also produced faster ball speeds, backing up Cobra’s claims that this is their fastest driver yet.

Though it’s to be expected from a low spin driver, I was really satisfied with the low spin rates and flatter ball flight produced by the LS. I rarely exceed 260 yards in carry distance, yet I sailed a number of shots over this mark when testing the powerful LS driver.

While I did see significant speed and distance gains with the LS, I also noticed a larger dispersion. This comes down to the lower MOI head, which is more punishing on mishits than its X and MAX siblings. Out of the middle, however, the LS is a beast.

cobra darkspeed driver headcover
A word on the murdered-out headcover — it’s a beauty.

Final Thoughts

The DARKSPEED LS Driver is an excellent pick for fast, accurate players.

Numbers don’t lie — the LS delivered incredible ball speed and carry numbers with its low spin, punchy ball flights. When struck well, the driver feels and sounds fantastic.

If you’re looking for accuracy and forgiveness, I recommend considering the X and MAX versions. But if you trust your ball striking, the LS will hit the ball a mile.

Check out the Cobra DARKSPEED LS Driver here.

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Hailing from the South West of England, Jake has been playing golf for over a decade. He founded Pitchmarks with the aim of helping everyday golfers like himself learn more about the game, through instructional content and honest gear reviews. He has a degree in Architecture and a passion for golf course design, along with a lofty goal to play the world's top 100 courses.