This review is a little late, considering how fast the Pickleball paddle market moves. So many paddles coming out every week! As a former original Engage Pursuit paddle owner, here are the reasons to purchase the flagship Engage Pursuit Pro MX 6.0 Pickleball Paddle. I’ll also share my thoughts and compare it to my current paddle, the Joola Ben Johns Perseus Paddle.
The Engage Pursuit Pro MX 6.0 is the latest offering from Engage. There is also a Pursuit Pro EX model. The difference in the two models are in the dimensions. The MX is the elongated version, while the EX is the more traditional squarish form factor.
The paddle brand is quite popular at my club. Even in the 4 months that the paddle has been available, I still see a significant number of players who are using it.
The Design and Specs
The Engage Pursuit Pro MX paddle design is bolder than the previous more understated Pursuit line of paddles. The designers went with a white on black theme which is actually quite catchy. Engage finally made the jump to using RAW Toray T700 carbon fiber. The paddle face is pleasingly rough to the touch. The size of the elongated paddle comes in at 16.5″ x 7.5″. The thickness is 16mm (5/8″ thick core). It weighs in at about 8.1 to 8.5 ounces.
The handle is a fairly standard leather handle. The handle is comfortable and long enough (5.75″) for those who rely on using two hands for both backhand drives and dinks. Unfortunately the grip circumference only comes in 4 3/8″. I found it to be a little thicker than advertised.
The paddle provides excellent control on volleys, dinks and especially resets. Volleys were solid and my dinks were fairly accurate. The paddle is very well balanced (credit to the “Counter Balance Technology”). I had no trouble maneuvering the paddle from forehand to backhand during firefights. Off center hits were above average. This is likely due to the “Vortex Barrier Edge Technology” which is a composite that is injected into the outer cells of the core. It does help to expand the sweet spot and assists on resets. I had no problems deflecting hard drives directed my way. It is one of the strengths of the paddle
While I did find the spin to not be as effective as my Joola Perseus paddle, I found it to be above average on groundstrokes and topspin lobs compared to other Toray Carbon fiber paddles that I have tested.
I do have to mention the “Variable Release Technology” which is available on the MX model only. Engage claims that the paddle flexes less when you swing slowly (such as volleys and dinks) and flexes more when you swing faster (think groundstrokes on the baseline). My friends and I who have tried that paddle confirm that you can actually feel the difference in the paddle in each scenario. Whether it significantly improves my play, the jury is still out.
I’m going to keep playing with my Ben Johns Perseus for now as spin is a huge part of my game. However, I can heartily recommend the Engage Pursuit MX 6.0. It is a worthy add to any burgeoning paddle collection. It is definitely the best paddle Engage currently offers in terms of build quality and playability. Give it a chance!