Introducing the Miura MC-501 (Global Model)
Finally a new model from Miura for the Global Market and one that begins to give us a peek at the brand’s future design language. A lot has happened for Miura over the past year. The most significant news was when the distribution rights everywhere outside of Japan were purchased by Howard Milstein a billionaire who runs the largest privately owned, a family-run bank in the U.S. To be clear they do not own Miura factory but rather the distribution rights worldwide, outside of Japan. Miura Giken the plant that produces most of the Miura’s products still has rights over the Japanese market.
There were a few years before the purchase that Miur Global was left adrift with no new products on the global side and indeed what appeared to be a stagnation of the brand. Once Mr. Milstein and his team got their hands on the company an immediate restructuring started and while it has taken some time the fruits of their labor are coming to fruition. We expect things to improve drastically. Ready for more? Follow the Jump…
Here at TourSpecGolf, we have promoted the Miura (Giken) side from Japan but never any of the global releases, and this goes back since 2003. We were also vocal about the use of spin welded hosels. Through all that, we always promoted Miura products as quality and maintained good sales. Miura clubs are unique; most are handmade and importantly in high demand from our customers. When Howard Milstein purchased the company, I decided to reach out to his team and use the opportunity as a re-introduction. Thankfully the new team at Miura is running things in a completely different and more positive way with big plans in effect now and even bigger plans for the future.
I read online that some are saying the brand will lose its soul because a Billionaire purchased the rights to global distribution outside of Japan. I understand why they would think that, but at the same time, it is an ignorant opinion. The reality is that the products are still outstanding and made by the same great factory and that the group of people behind Miura that are working at their brand spanking new headquarters in Scottsdale AZ are as game as it gets. All of them have extensive knowledge of golf, and now with buku dollars backing them, we should not expect worse when a better version of Miura is on the horizon. Needless to say everyone at Miura has an upbeat vibe about the company, and so do we.
This is a not our official review, that is to come but I have hit this club and so have a few of our most trusted testers in both the USA and Japan. Here at TSG, we don’t rely on launch monitors numbers; this isn’t rocket science. We are talking about a one-piece forged iron head. Well technically it’s two-piece (spin-welded hosel) but whatever the case if your buying this type of iron your concern is not distance. People who are purists or the ideal customer are after particular traits specifically shape from all angles, address, sole width, the way the toe, face, and neck set up and so on. People, who are shopping blades want to know how does it feel and how workable it is. After that, they start considering forgiveness, lofts, and distance. So let’s start there.
The Miura MC-501 is modern. The cut-outs on the back face are an attractive way to move weight around. This contemporary shape allowed them to move nearly 20g’s lower toward the sole. We should not forget the club heads heel to toe length, sole width, slight offset and grind help it a lot too.
TSG gets a ton of user feedback from customers, not anonymous randoms who inject their 2 cents. We know their complete purchase history of our customers and know what they have hit and what stays in the bag, this validates what works and doesn’t. To put it bluntly, our customers usually know their S**t.
I am saying this because not every new model was excellent. Take the 5005, for instance; our customers were able to acquire it from TourSpecGolf years early, so we knew how it performed and what our clients switched to and how soon. That info is revealing; it tells us whats decent vs. great despite the many variables in this game. I will take that feedback over launch monitor data any day. When the U.S released the 5005 the feedback was far more positive than what we observed from our clients. I think this is confirmation bias or possibly a honeymoon period and as I expected the glowing reviews faded and in many cases, the 5005 was replaced by something else, often quickly. In my opinion, It did not feel as good as other Miuras, and people don’t keep harsh feeling blades around for very long. The 5005’s small cavity didn’t give it any extra forgiveness. Why am I talking about the 5005? Well because it was Miura’s first entry into what we call the Neo-Blade category and the MC-501 picks up where it left off, Thankfully the MC 501 does a much better job.
We still believe the best classic blade Miura JPN or Global has ever made was the MB-5003 and MB-001. This new MC-501 in my eyes is up there as well. It really depends on what you are looking for in a blade. It surprised us on how well the MC 501 reviewed with our testers.
Feel – It’s pretty good, softer than most especially when hit center or low on the face. Higher on the face both toe and heel side suffered and that good feel tapered off a bit but still when struck decently you feel the classic Miura mojo in a neo blade package. The MC-501’s vibrations reverberate through the lower portion of the head more than the middle and top; the feel is semi-soft without much harsh. The 501 will let you know when you nut it yet on the poorly struck shots it was decent at hiding the shock. I give the MC-501 4/5 stars! Or a score of 8/10. It’s all subjective, but I know my shit…lol
Above – a slightly wider sole than most blades with a pronounced killed leading edge grind for the steeper descent.
Forgiveness – This is why you would buy this blade, it is easier to hit than most others. Crazy Sbi-02 forgiving (almost) but it looks worlds better than the Sbi-02. If you like the CB-1008, this reminds me of a blade version of it. For Miura die-hards allow me to try to put it in words, Think Miura CB-1007 vs. CB-1008, 1008 is a touch softer, it is for sure easier to hit and went a bit higher. The same thing with the new MC-501 when compared to the 5005, The 501 has that same lower center of gravity situation that 1008 has going for it. So if you like the 1008’s and you are wanting to go blade give it a try.
How about this: Dear Miura, please make a combo set of 1008/501 but please custom grind the sole, top line, shape, and aesthetics of the two designs for proper consistency. Also while you’re at it keep the heel to toe length equal and give it progressive FP with more in the long irons than short. Required are matching loft/lie/bounce/camber too. That is their roadmap to victory using what traditional tech they have and maximizing it. I am sure they are listening.
The MC 501 is workable and has a good shape. Its top line is very thin; it has a little bit offset which I am happy about. Miura slightly increased critical dimensions for an noticable improvement in forgiveness. Its a sweet feeling and forgiving blade thanks to that. The toe is not the usual rounded it squares off with its peak about a millimeter past the top groove. Something else I appreciate is what is called a clear top blade meaning there is no bead blast on the top line.
TourSpecGolf now has the Japan versions available in our pro shop but expect us to make the transition to the Miura global products sometime this year. From our perspective, the future looks bright for the brand. This blog post is an introduction, we have a scratch player’s feedback coming this shortly, and this is a person who hits nearly every top Japanese blade that comes to market. Stay Tuned for more!