Following up on last year’s frankly very versatile Gel Nimbus 21, Asics must have had to put in a rather generous amount of effort to up the game. As they have done. And it’s the 22nd iteration of Asics’ legacy Nimbus line, and the latest running shoe is called the Gel Nimbus 22. In fact, what I am reviewing here is the newer of the newest shoe! It is the Asics Gel Nimbus 22 Tata Mumbai Marathon Edition. It is priced at Rs 13,999.
For starters, the Asics Gel Nimbus 22 immediately looks better than its predecessor. The looks bit could also be subjective, and the Asics Gel Nimbus 21 was quite conventional in its own right, but the visual cues come together better this time around. It could perhaps be the vertical flex grooves on the midsole which are visible all around that simply add a dash of personality as well as the ‘this means business’ look. The electric blue/vibrant yellow colorway is bright, to put it diplomatically. I am more a fan of the sheet rock/graphite grey colorway that the standard Gel Nimbus 22 get. But well, if you like blue and a dash of yellow, these sneakers tick off your checklist for sure. For me, it would have been perfect if Asics had gone with that colorway and then added whatever it needed for the Tata Mumbai Marathon special edition. The 19.0760 degrees north coordinates are embedded quite attractively too—these are the exact coordinates for the location of the Tata Mumbai Marathon and may be a helpful reminder in case you forget. As for your friends and family who may wonder what this is, you can always tell them some complicated explanation that will leave them looking at your shoe in amazement.
The Gel Nimbus shoes have traditionally be neutral shoes, designed for high mileage. They are equally adept as running shoes, and as training shoes. The Gel Nimbus 22 has a 10mm offset (heel height at 25mm and toe height at 15mm). It weighs 309 grams, which though not the lightest, isn’t really a matter for concern because these sneakers are very well balanced. The upper is made from a monofilament mesh which is smoother than before, is more flexible, offers more ventilation than before and is also lighter than what the predecessor offered. The additional room inside becomes apparent as soon as you slide your foot in. The toe box is wider, and though I’m not certain about the exact numbers, the vertical height also seems to be more at the front of the shoe.
One thing that I had noticed about the Gel Nimbus 21 was that the midsole had the tendency to feel a tad more robust in the first few seconds after you slip your feet in but softened up quite considerably after that. The comfort was very good, and the feedback from the running surface (be it a soft surface outdoors, a hard floor or a treadmill), was quite appreciable. In the Gel Nimbus 21, beneath your feet was the FlyteFoam Lite midsole which is made of nano-fibres and the springy Flytefoam Propel.
But a lot has changed with the Gel Nimbus 22. This grows up to get the full FlyteFoam experience, complete with 2 millimeters more of the cushioning compared with the predecessor. Asics also says that this now sits closer to the running surface, which allows for quicker and deeper compression as the foot hits the ground. In my experience, the feedback and the bounciness is certainly a notch above what the predecessor offered. Somehow, the foot also feels like it is wrapped in a more luxurious box than before, which is a great thing. The foot remains securely locked in, without ever feeling pressure from the sidewalls.
Most certainly, one of the reasons for this extra dose of luxury is the rather large section of GEL cushioning that sits under the heel. This specifically helps in absorbing the impacts that would otherwise come jarring upwards all the way to your calf muscle. What I can say with certainty is that having used the Asics Gel Quantum Infinity for over a year now, this GEL based cushioning really works in taking the comfort level a couple of notches higher. Though the Infinity had the GEL cushioning through and through, the advantages even under the heel are quite apparent and something you’ll really enjoy in the long term.
The outsole is made of what Asics calls as AHAR. It is basically Asics High Abrasion Rubber material. Well, simply put, its rubber. There are now more curvy grooves, 8 in total, which are embedded in the outsole. This is certainly more than the forward focused grooves that the Gel Nimbus 21 has. Grip levels are good, even on the slightly dodgy surfaces just after a sharp shower. What this outsole also helps Asics do is manage the weight of the shoe even after the addition of the new GEL pod and the extra thickness of the midsole. The men’s shoe weighs 309 grams, at par with the 310 grams that the Gel Nimbus 21 offered.
It has to be said that Asics have really nailed down the design, comfort and the technology aspects in the Gel Nimbus 22. This adds a genuine dose of premium-ness to the Nimbus line of sneakers. This is a very consistent sneaker that can with you for long distance running, sessions in the gym, training routine and even daily usage—and that’s the versatility ticked off. In style.
And as a final reminder, the Tata Mumbai Marathon is being organized on January 19, 2020. The marathon covers a distance of 42.195 km, while the half marathon is 21.097 km. There is a 10k race category as well, and a 5.9 km dream run.