Yes, I know that top tennis player Rafael Nadal regularly uses Babolat Aeropro Drive tennis racquet since 2004. The history of his success tells us that the majority of the credit of his tennis career wins can be attributed to this single Babolat Aeropro Drive GT tennis racket. This racket is in existence since 2003 and about 14 grand slam victories are attributed to this single racket only.
Some of Rafael’s winning tennis rackets were 2005-06 Aeropro Drive, 2007-08 Aeropro Drive, 2010-2012 Aeropro Drive version, 2013 version of Aeropro, and then 2014 version of Aeropro Drive French Open.
These are some of his top quality Babolat tennis rackets that have helped him in the past to win major tennis tournament titles. But is it still worth to buy 2016-2018 version of Babolat Aeropro Drive?
I have done some background research as well as testing and have come up with some interesting facts and data. So, without further delay, let us dive into the full-fledged detailed review of this great historical tennis racquet.
Who Else Have Used This Babolat Aeropro Drive Racquet?
Besides Rafael Nadal, several other top rated tennis players have tried their hands on this remarkable tennis racket. Some of those names are Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (France), Caroline Wozniacki (Denmark), Jerzy Janowicz (Poland), and Francesca Schiavone (Italy).
If you analyse the gameplay style and strength of these players then you will realize that all of these players love to play with rackets that can provide them maximum power and spin. And obviously Babolat Aeropro Drive is the one go-to racket which gives you that maximum spin and power.
Before checking out the features and my actual review, I recommend you to check out the expert reviews of different pro tennis players about 2013 version of Babolat Aeropro Drive racket. Watch it now.
Main Features of Babolat Aeropro Drive GT 2016-2018 Racquet
Weight of the Racket: About 300 gm (10.6 oz)
Headsize: 100 sqaure inches (645 cm)
String Pattern: 16 x 19
Balance Point: 320 mm
Cortex Technology: Cortex Dampening System is being used in latest Babolat tennis racquets. It helps to get effective feedback to the tennis player. The handle of this racquet helps you to gain maximum control for every stroke you play on the court.
Woofer System: This system is also known as Frame String Link System. It helps you to get right contact between the ball and racket. It also assists you in getting better control and comfort while playing the tennis.
GT Construction: GT stands for Graphite Tungsten. This new construction technology from Babolat immensely help the tennis player to gain improved stability at tennis ball impact on your racket.
This GT construction of Babolat Aeropro Drive racquet is essentially best for gaining enhanced accuracy and power for your tennis strokes.
Aero Technology: Obviously this Babolat racquet is integrated with advanced Aero construction technology as well. It is also known as Sleek Aerodynamic Frame technology.
This technology helps the player to penetrate the air easily. With this technology integrated into the racket, you can get maximum power and spin while playing on the tennis court.
All these unique features make this racquet one of the strongest contenders for the best tennis rackets in the world. But is it really true? Does it stand the test of hardcore professional and advanced tennis players?
Let us find out whether Babolat Aeropro Drive GT 2016-2018 version is still one of the best or is it just the brand name that is making it so big.
Actually I recommend you to watch the following brief overview video from AneelSports.com to know more about its features.
I always test any racquet extensively for a month before I make any opinion about it. So, I went ahead and bought this baby and then tested it out for a month or so.
My Observations and Honest Review About Babolat Aeropro Drive GT 2016-2018 Racquet
1. Medium Head-Size
The head of this Babolat racket is 100 sq. inches. Now, this headsize falls to the medium size racquets. The smallest head size I have seen is about 85 sq. inches up to 95 sq. inches.
And the largest head size rackets I have seen that goes up to 150 to 180 sq. inches. As far as figures are concerned, more than 95 percent rackets are made with 95 sq. inches head size specifications.
So considering these sizes, I can tell you one thing for sure that this Aeropro Drive GT falls into the medium size rackets. And it is best suited for Intermediate to Advanced Professional tennis players.
Therefore, if you are a tennis player with 3.5 tennis rating or more then this is the ideal racket to play with on the tennis court.
2. Not Extremely Powerful Racket
Many new tennis players who are below 3.5 tennis rating tend to say that this is really powerful racket. Basically, this is their own opinion.
If you consider the power of a racket with headsize of 150 sq. inches to 180 sq. inches, the power of this Babolat racket is not that great. But compared to medium headsize rackets, it is definitely superlative.
3. Much Better Control
It is because of this medium headsize, you get better control over your tennis shots with this racket.
The handling capability is also good as compared to the larger headsize rackets.
4. Decent Amount of Spin
This Babolat Aeropro Drive GT racket comes with 16 x 19 string pattern. This means you get 16 by 19 squares or crosses in your racket string design.
When you consider this string pattern with smaller headsize racket strings, then you will realize that this is not a very strict string pattern but a fairly tight one. Small headsize rackets come with much stricter string pattern as compared to this one.
Therefore, based on the strictness of this string pattern I can say that you will get a decent amount of spin or medium level spin on this racket. Plus I have noticed with this racket that the spin you get with this one is not very loose or inconsistent which is one good aspect of using this.
5. Material Quality is Good
I believe that the material used to build this Babolat racket is of great quality.
The company have integrated various new racket construction technologies such as Cortex technology, Woofer System, Graphite Tungsten, and Aero Technology.
All the integration of these technologies have made this racket really durable, comfortable to handle and easy to maintain over a long period of time.
6. Flexible String Pattern
After 30 days of usage, I have experienced that the string pattern of this racket is pretty flexible and responsive to every tennis shot we play.
Thanks to its Woofer System, when you hit the ball, the strings of the racket are going to flex a bit.
The edges of the racquet’s frame are designed in such a way that they help the string to slide a little and helps you to make a comfortable hitting experience.
7. 4 Points Headlight Racket
When you consider the overall weight of this racket, it comes to 4 points headlight. What this means is when you balance this 27 inches Babolat racquet in the middle on your finger, then if it balances perfectly, then it is called as 0 point Head Light.
Zero point headlight indicates that there is equal weight distributed in the handle as well as in the head of your racquet.
This racquet is not a zero HL and it is 4 HL (HeadLight) in terms of its weight. This also means that there is more weight distributed on the handle side of the racket that it is on the head side.
The total weight of this racket is about 317 gm which comes in the middle lightweight category. The minimum weight of the racket usually tends to be close to 275 gm and maximum weight can go up to 350 to 360 gm.
Therefore, 317 gm of swing weight is not that heavy to handle and that is why it is perfect for intermediate to advanced professional tennis players.
8. Its not for Young Kids or Older Players
Though this is a lighter version racket for medium to advanced players, it is not that lightweight as far as junior level players and old people are concerned. Moderate and advanced tennis players with pretty good physical strength can comfortably play with this racket.
But older people aged more than 70 and younger kids will not be able to handle it well. Even for heavier players, this racket would be too lightweight and they will need to find another racket with little bit more weight than this one.
If you are a beginner level player with having less speed, strength and stamina then I will not recommend you this racquet. But if you are a tennis player having more than 3.5 tennis rating and can handle rackets of 300 gm and more comfortably then this is ideal racket for you to play with.
Average Cumulative Rating
So, as I stated earlier, this Babolat Aeropro Drive GT tennis racket is the best choice for moderate to advanced level professional tennis players.
But if you are a beginner level or junior level player then this is not the ideal racket for you. Even if you are more than 70 years and so, then I will recommend you to choose more lightweight racquet.
Considering all the unique features, comfort, support, power and spin capability, I will give it the rating of 4.0 out of 5.