Asics Gel-Nimbus 24 Review
by iRUN Singapore on March 08, 2022
If you count all the ASICS trainers that you see on the road, chances are very good that the Nimbus will be top of your list. The Nimbus is ASICS’ top-of-the-range neutral trainer.
The Nimbus is a max-cushioned trainer so it's supposed to be the softest shoe in the ASICS range. But there was a time, not so long ago when the ASICS Nimbus wasn't a soft shoe. Versions 19-21 of the Nimbus were relatively firm compared to other max-cushioned trainers.
Luckily, ASICS remedied this. The last 2 versions of the Nimbus were plush-riding shoes and deserving of the Nimbus name. The new Nimbus 24 is softer than it has ever been.
In addition to having a softer ride, it also has a new upper which is more streamlined. It weighs less than the Nimbus 23 and it has a slightly thicker midsole.
The Nimbus competes with other max-cushioned trainers like the New Balance 1080v11, the Adidas Ultraboost 22, the Nike Invincible Run and the Saucony Triumph 19.
Men (272 g), Women (247 g)
The headline feature on the Nimbus 24’s upper is its new flat, knitted tongue which replaces the thick and puffy tongue of the old Nimbus versions.
The new, thin tongue has 2 purposes: it reduces the overall weight of the shoe and it allows for better breathability which makes the Nimbus 24 a cooler shoe.
The tongue is gusseted so it stays in place during runs and there's no tongue slide.
Heel lockdown in the Nimbus 24 is excellent. It has a plush, generously padded collar and heel tab which makes the rear feel extremely luxurious.
A stout internal heel counter provides structure and support so the Nimbus 24’s upper feels very sturdy.
There are long reflective squiggles on the sides of the heel counter so the Nimbus 24 is a great shoe for early morning or late night runs.
The fit of the Nimbus 24 is different to previous versions. It has a narrow midfoot and forefoot and it runs slightly shorter than the Nimbus 23 so if you have wide feet, you'll most likely need the wide version.
ASICS has been on a roll when it comes to midsole foams. 2 years ago, the super bouncy FF Blast was introduced in the Novablast and last year the light and explosive FF Turbo was introduced in the Metaspeed series. Now, ASICS’ newest midsole foam innovation, FF Blast+ makes its debut in the Nimbus 24.
FF Blast+ is an improvement over FF Blast in that it compresses easier and it springs back to shape much quicker so the Nimbus 24 feels even softer underfoot and more energetic.
FF Blast+ is paired with firmer Flytefoam so the Nimbus 24 has a dual foam midsole setup. Flytefoam (blue foam) is situated in the rearfoot and the midfoot to create more stable landings and to improve durability.
The FF Blast+ (grey foam) is situated under the Flytefoam and extends the entire length of the midsole. This makes the forefoot of the Nimbus 24 super soft and flexible.
It's the GEL-Nimbus so you get a large portion of gel in the heel and a small “coin-sized” amount hidden in the forefoot of the shoe.
A big change in the midsole of the Nimbus 24 is that the plastic Trusstic system has been moved. It's no longer situated on the outsole of the shoe but it has been moved upwards into the middle of the midsole, between the two foams.
This change makes the Trusstic shank less intrusive while still providing enough structure in the midfoot. This was first done in the Kayano 28.
The rubber placement on the Nimbus 24’s outsole is the same as on the Nimbus 23. The big difference is that on the midfoot section there is no more plastic shank and instead there is exposed midsole foam.
The heel section has the harder, more durable ASICS High Abrasion Rubber (AHAR+) to protect the foam from heel strikes and that's where most runners land first.
The softer, less durable AHAR is placed on the forefoot section.
There are 5 flex grooves in the forefoot which allow a high degree of flexibility. The grooves are slightly shallower than on the Nimbus 23 because the midsole of the 24 is softer and would have been too flexible with deep grooves.
The Nimbus 24 has a vastly different ride to the Nimbus 23 and any previous version. The lighter weight and increased midsole rebound makes the 24 a much more versatile trainer. It can handle slow paces above 6 minutes per kilometre as well as much faster paces below 5 minutes per kilometre.
Flexibility of the forefoot is high so it's not the best shoe for speed workouts or threshold runs below 4 minutes per kilometre but for steady runs, it performs admirably.
The midsole setup is dual-density so heel and midfoot strikers will find the ride firmer than forefoot strikers who will land on the super soft FF Blast+.
The Nimbus 24 has plenty of cushioning so it can handle long marathon distances or further and the high level of energy return makes the shoe feel efficient during long runs above 20 kilometres.
Ride transitions are buttery smooth because the outsole is now full ground contact and the plastic shank doesn't get in the way anymore.
Stability is also good because of the Nimbus 24’s broad midsole base. The solid heel counter and the floating Trusstic system ensure that the shoe retains its structure and remains supportive during transitions.
The ASICS Gel-Nimbus 24 is a very big upgrade over its predecessor. It's lighter, more bouncy and most importantly, it's softer, which makes it a better max-cushioned trainer.
The big updates are that it no longer has a thick, puffy tongue, it has the new FF Blast+ foam in its midsole and the Trusstic system has been moved to the middle of the midsole.
If you've shied away from the Nimbus in the past because you thought it was too heavy and cumbersome, you need to try the Nimbus 24 because it's unlike any previous Nimbus: it's faster and it's more versatile.
The Nimbus 24's upper isn't as plush as its predecessors and its fit is also a tad narrow/short but this version of the Nimbus is much better suited to light runners because of how much easier its midsole compresses when loaded.
Compared to other max-cushioned trainers, the Nimbus 24 is lighter than most, more flexible than most and also softer than most so it makes a very compelling purchase if you're in the market for a highly cushioned trainer.
Reviewed by Brandon Law
Check out the Asics Nimbus 24 Collection here