Since golf is not the cheapest sport to take up, finding budget-friendly equipment is often the top priority for golfers. Kirkland brand golf balls, are a direct to consumer option for budget seekers and newcomers.
The popularity of direct to consumer balls is increasing, given that it gives you more bang for your buck, and offers comparable performance to the notable brands.
Who Makes Kirkland Signature Golf Balls
The Kirkland golf ball manufacturer is the big brand Costco, and they came out with their first signature ball in 2016. Given that Costco is one of the most reputable wholesale brands on the market, it is tough to contest their entry into the golf ball market.
While some skeptics may question the quality of the balls produced by Costco, you can’t argue with its superior customer service and price points
Kirkland 3-Piece Golf Ball Review
Compared to the industry-leading Titleist Pro-V1x, the Kirkland 3-piece golf balls stacked up relatively close in many ways.
Taken from a wide range of golfers with varying handicaps and swing speeds, the Kirkland Performance one only dragged behind in distance by an average of 10 yards total.
Kirkland balls carried an average of 7 yards less than the Pro-V1x and experienced a 3mph ball speed deficit.
Kirkland balls also showed more significant numbers than the Pro-V1x in ball spin, and by a considerable amount.
The higher spin with the Kirkland Performance balls results in less distance and accuracy, especially with the longer irons. The ball will roll a little bit less and may be more drastic on the green.
With more spin comes greater stopping power for golfers with slower swing speeds.
Overall, the Costco golf ball review showed that they are better suited for mid-handicappers who want to save on price and get a soft feel.
You may not notice much difference in individual shots when you compare the performance of Kirkland balls to the #1 ball in golf. The question arises when it comes to the consistency from ball to ball.
Kirkland balls produced a higher number of outliers within the tests. This means that there may have been much less consistency between individual shots.
It also begs the question of how consistent the balls would be from pack to pack.
Costco is undoubtedly working to make sure all of their balls are consistent as possible. However, they do not possess the generations of experience that some of the more prominent names have.
The price saved on the balls may end up costing you a few extra bucks on the course if you’re in a money game with your buddies. So it’s crucial to weigh your options.
What Happened To Kirkland Golf Balls
In 2016, Kirkland golf balls took the market by storm with excellent reviews on its 3-piece ball. After Costco claimed that the Kirkland ball meets or exceeds the quality of the leading balls on the market, a lawsuit was filed by the manufacturer of the Titleist Pro-V1 over a violation of up to 10 patents.
In 2018, the case was settled out of court.
Then, in 2019, Kirkland balls resurfaced. This time, with a 4-piece ball at the same low price point that accompanied the original 3-piece ball. After a short time on the market, the 4-piece ball began to receive bad reviews.
Many golfers took to online forums such as Reddit with photos of the 4-piece ball showing cracks after a few short holes.
The negative Kirkland golf ball reviews were building up more and more. Costco then issued a recall of the 4-piece balls and offered refunds without needing to return the balls.
The Kirkland golf ball brand has not yet made a bounce back on the market.
Lawrence Smelser is part of the Golfible editorial staff and is a freelance golf writer. Smelser has covered the PGA Tour and most recently the 2019 Masters. He holds a journalism Bachelor's degree from Texas A&M and a Master’s journalism degree from the University of North Texas