ProDrive Carbon - Power. Spin. and More Power!!?... at a cost

Will Chaing
Will Chaing
November 7, 2023

Unveiling the ProDrive Carbon: A Game-Changer in the Paddle World?

ProDrive is back in the pickleball arena with a thrilling addition to their lineup, the ProDrive Carbon. This is a pretty impressive, albeit heavy paddle, which can be seen as an upgrade to its predecessor, the original ProDrive. I’ve shared my thoughts on the original ProDrive, and I'm excited to delve into what makes the ProDrive Carbon a paddle worth considering.

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The Original ProDrive: A Unique Core Design

Before we dive into the ProDrive Carbon, let's revisit what made the original ProDrive stand out. What set it apart was its innovative 3-core design, featuring a central core layer made of either Kevlar or Nomex, sandwiched between two layers of standard polypropylene honeycomb cores. This unique design gave the original ProDrive a distinct feel and offered different attributes for various shots.

The original ProDrive was known for its plush and soft feel, making it ideal for finesse shots. However, when swung with full force, it could deliver substantial power, thanks to the Kevlar core. Despite its strengths, some players, including myself, found it challenging to generate spin, especially when the grit paint wore off after a short period.

ProDrive Carbon: The Evolution We've Been Waiting For

Now, let's shift our focus to the ProDrive Carbon, which takes everything we liked about the original and enhances the design. The standout feature of this new paddle is the addition of a raw carbon fiber face, which has transformed its spin potential. While it may not top the charts, it certainly places the ProDrive Carbon in the top tier of paddle options.

This paddle is a game-changer for players who enjoy high-level tennis, singles play, or powerful shots. Its pop is impressive, and it boasts a firm feel, delivering remarkable performance. However, this power comes at a cost.

The ProDrive Carbon is a substantial paddle, weighing in at around 8.5 ounces in its stock form. Moreover, it has one of the highest swing weights in the market. While this makes it incredibly effective for drives, serves, and returns, it can feel sluggish in hand battles and may require some extra effort.

Rolls and flicks may also present a slight challenge due to the higher swing weight. In essence, if you're considering this paddle, it might be a good time to hit the gym to ensure you can handle its weight and maintain your hand speed at the no volley zone.

ProDrive Carbon vs. Diadem's Warrior V2

For those curious about how the ProDrive Carbon stacks up against Diadem's Warrior V2, which also boasts a 20mm 3-core design, here's the scoop. The ProDrive Carbon is a more powerful version of the Warrior V2, and in my opinion, it boasts superior construction, particularly when it comes to the edge guard. Given the choice between the two, I'd lean towards the ProDrive Carbon.


  • CORE: PP honeycomb + KEVLAR honeycomb + PP honeycomb. Polypropylene (PP) honeycomb cores are a strong but flexible lightweight material that provides optimal mechanical performance in composite sandwich structures. Kevlar as a middle layer provides strength and prolongs the honeycomb core.
  • WEIGHT: 8.8 +-.25OZ
  • LENGTH: 16.4 inches
  • THICKNESS: 19MM – same as the Diadem Warrior
  • SURFACE: Toray T700 raw carbon fiber
  • HANDLE LENGTH: 5.3 inches
  • GRIP SIZE: 4 1/8 inches


In summary, the ProDrive Carbon is a force to be reckoned with in the pickleball world. With its enhanced spin capabilities and impressive power, it's a paddle that's sure to make waves on the court. Just be prepared for its weight and swing weight, and you'll have a game-changing tool in your hands. Until next time, play better, peace!