Price: £265 (inc VAT and delivery)
My experiences with golf trolleys have been pretty well documented so it was with some trepidation that I undertook to review the latest Hill Billy Hi-Lite electric bag-carrier. Having temporarily lost a Kaddie Stroller in a lake, driven over my ball in a buggy on numerous occasions and seen a pull-trolley knock over my wife in high winds at Druids Glen, my impressions of these beasts of burden are somewhat tainted.
However, this new experience started encouragingly when I ordered the Hi-Lite on-line at 9.42am on a Thursday (it took about six minutes to complete the formalities and lighten my credit card) and by 11.20 the next morning it was on my doorstep.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t!
My order confirmation had said it would be dispatched within the next working day and I hadn’t expected it until the Monday – so was aghast when I returned from walking the dogs, to discover the courier company had left a note requesting a re-arrangement of delivery.
It duly arrived and after topping up the battery overnight it was ready to roll.
To be honest, I never thought I’d have the discipline to make best use of a battery-powered trolley. All that unhooking the powerplant from the frame, re-charging and then re-connecting. Such a pain.
However, after half a dozen rounds, I’ve got into the habit of disconnecting the battery from it’s permanent umbillical cord in the conservatory and delivering it to the boot of my car.
The framework of the Hi-Lite, in my chosen Racing green livery, to match my golf bag (it could have been burgundy, black or silver), is a sturdy workhorse with a pair of wheels either side and smaller, stabilising ones at the front.
Stability was a worry at first – the width of the wheel base looked too narrow to handle a wobbling trolley bag, until I discovered there’s a special skill in stuffing clubs, balls and waterproofs in your bag, so as not to make it lop-sided.
My Hi-Lite trundles along now in a perfect straight line and I can set the handle-mounted accelerator to join me alongside at walking pace, climb shallow gradients unaided, or even catch me up, seconds after I reach my ball and decide on my club selection.
But it’s not perfect and on my home course (Greetham Valley) which many of you will know for a couple of steep gradients (towards the 10th green on the Lakes and approaching the 14th and 16th on the Valley), it needs a steady hand on the tiller to avoid it toppling backwards.
In the winter it might even need knobbly tyre accessories or ice chains!
Overall, the Hill Billy Hi-Lite, as its name suggests, is as sure-footed as a mountain goat and its energy saving qualities have helped knock a couple of shots off my game. It might not be the cheapest in its class but so far it’s smart and reliable and, unlike previous trolleys, isn’t accident prone.
|Golfmagic rating: 9/10|