Previously this year we tested and reviewed the other models in the Asics stability running shoe line up: the Asics Kayano 18 and the GT-2170. In particular we found the GT 2170 to be a very solid stability running shoe: traditional and feature-rich. The GT-1170 is the little sister of the family. Coming at 20$ less, it is a very interesting option.
The Asics GT 1170 certainly does not look or feel like a “cheap” shoe. It has all the features you expect from a modern-day stability trainer and more than what you expect to find in a 90$ shoe.
Asics GT 1170 Sole Unit
Traditional but rich sole unit in the 1170. The foam material for most of the midsole is Asics spEva, a slightly heavier EVA compound than the Solyte you find in the 2170 and Kayano. This contributes to the heavier weight of the 1170, but still delivers Asics’ trademark cushioning and reponsiveness.
The medial (internal) side of the midsole rocks a quite substantial DuoMax posting – this means the harder foam compound, clearly visible as the darker grey part, that provides extra stability and prevents the arch from collapsing too much (overpronating) during the running gait.
Adds to the stability features of the Asics 1170 a good Trusstic system, which is the plastic shank that wraps the midsole under the arch of the foot. This solution is widely adopted in many running shoes, but often is just an afterthought. The shank in the 1170 is very similar to the one on its bigger sister GT 2170 and offers the extra protection of preventing your ankle to twist in unnatural ways.
GEL is Asics’ trademark cushioning system and the 1170 sports a Gel unit in the heel. This makes heel landing quite soft.
Unfortunately you can feel that there is no GEL unit under the forefoot. While this makes the shoe more responsive at toe-off, it can be strange because you clearly feel the difference in cushioning between the heel and forefoot.
Last word about the outsole. IF you put the 1170 side by side with the 2170 and Kayano, you’ll notice the flex grooves are carved in a very similar way in all three shoes, so you can expect the same (good) flexibility from all three.
Asics GT 1170 Upper
The upper of the 1170 is very conservative and classic. I liked the soft and breathable mesh and the way overlays and the Asics logo are placed around the upper did work well with my foot.
The tongue and heel collar are padded for comfort, but it is clearly not the level of plush luxury of the Kayano upper, for example. A solid heel counter kept my heel in place during all kind of runs.
Asics GT 1170 Opinion
I am very happy with the 1170. It basically is a shoe that is all substance and delivers on its promises. I have extremely flat feet and my right one overpronates heavily especially at longer distances.
The only things I could see improving are a reduction of weight, some softer material on the heel collar and slightly more cushioning on the forefoot. Well, I assume that shoe exists and it’s the Asics GT 2170.
At the same time, if you are a heavier runner and are not bothered by the extra weight the GT 1170 is an incredible shoe to have for 90 bucks and a benchmark on how sub 100$ shoes should be.
We thank the nice people at Asics for sending us a pair of GT 1170 for testing. This did not influence our review of the shoe, written after running more than 100 miles in them