Updated: September 18th, 2012
Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Running Shoes Review
Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Pair

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Pair

Full Name:Asics Gel Nimbus 13
Category: Cushioning
Weight: 11.6 oz (329 grams) (Men); 8 oz (226.8 grams) (Women)
Suggested Price: $ 130
Recommended For:Heel strikers, runners seeking maximal cushioning, beginner runners.

UPDATE: We reviewed the new Asics Nimbus 14 !

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 General Info:

The GEL Nimbus series is among Asics’ most popular offerings. The latest incarnation seeks to reduce weight while still providing maximal cushioning throughout the shoe. Overall, the Nimbus 13 provides a conservative reboot of the model, offering few major overhauls in favor of minor tweaking. The GEL heel cushioning system, along with the guidance line and trussic system, aims to guide foot gait. Overall, the newest iteration should feel familiar towearers of earlier versions of the shoe—the principle difference being weight reduction. For newcomers, the shoe is a good option for runners who need extensive cushioning, are heel strikers, or wish to diminish the impact of the road on joints while running.

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Heel

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Heel

In order to reduce weight, the Nimbus 13 features newer, lighter materials which seek to provide the same amount of cushioning and support as those foundin previous models—all while boasting less bulk and weight. The heel crash padon the new model is composed of a lighter, high-carbon rubber which provides ample heel support while reducing heft. As a result of these efforts, the shoe shed three-quarters of an ounce in its latest version, which helps legs stay fresh.

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 First Impressions:

First and foremost, I must admit that I tend to run in lighter shoes. As a result, the shoes took some getting used to for the first few miles. As I became better-acquainted with them, however, I noticed many strong points within the model, and began to understand their popularity. The cushioning in the heel would provide sturdy, unobtrusive protection for heel strikers, and the mild corrective features could help provide support for runners with slight pronation issues. Heavier runners or runners with a history of injury would also find the shoes to provide a great amount of support to keep joints from bearing the shock of road and trail running, as there is ample cushioning from top to bottom.

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Medial View

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Medial View

At times, the shoe admittedly began feeling heavy — particularly at the end of long runs. This is an important consideration for potential purchasers, as any shoe of this nature will run the same risk of feeling weighty during long workouts. Put simply—this is a symptom of a corrective shoe, and is not a detriment to the Nimbus 13. In order to include the type of features of a more cushioned shoe, one has to live with some additional weight on their feet. Helpful features, such as the great cushioning ,come at a cost — but many runners may find the improvement in movement to beworth the trade-off.

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Sole Unit:

The Nimbus 13’s outsole unit features a newly-crafted material, LiteAHAR (Asics High Abrason Rubber), which is a cross-over from the company’s crash pads on other trainer models. The high-abrasion rubber provides great traction, grip, and movement throughout a variety of surfaces. What’s more, the inclusion of the new sole material helps reduce weight — an essential feature this upgrade. Minimizing weight in the sole allows the midsole and upper to absorb the impact while still reducing the general heft of the shoe, which should come as welcome news for under-pronating runners. The outsole provides firm support for runs on various terrains: running on trails was a breeze, as was navigating uneven sidewalks and potholes while running on roads. The sole design provides plenty of grip during wet weather as well, providing firm traction that does not wear down quickly.

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Outsole

Asics Gel Nimbus 13 - Outsole

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Upper Design:

The upper unit of the Nimbus 13 also underwent a weight-loss regimen in its latest iteration, slimming down by five grams. This weight reduction is the result of the fully-revamped heel construction, which removes the internal heelcounter (the portion of the shoe which cradles the heel and reduces pronation issues) by replacing it with a lighter external heel counter system. Cushioning in the forefoot is also improved, creating a comfortable, firm platform for push-off and landing. Additionally, the Nimbus 13 features a synthetic mesh which provides a cushioned, comfortable fit throughout the foot which keeps dry despite the elements. New to this year’s design is the shoes’ asymmetrical lacing design which more accurately follows the pattern of the foot’s skeletal structure. The lacing design helps reduce friction and follows a more naturalpath along the foot, helping create a smooth ride along with the othercushioning elements found throughout the shoe.

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Opinion:

Shoe companies always take a gamble when it comes to making alterations to immensely-popular shoe models. The Nimbus line has proven to be a success for the Asics, and any changes could dramatically impact runners’ impressions of the shoe. In the Nimbus 13, Asics has managed to improve on an already-popular design by shedding weight and adding low-key features — all elements which could go unnoticed by most wearers that make a large impact nonetheless. Without making drastic changes, the Nimbus 13 provides a great update to a popular model which should leave current wearers and newcomers to the model satisfied.

As the shoe is designed to feature high-level cushioning, there is some unavoidable weight to the model. While this is greatly improved in the Nimbus 13, shoes of this type always weigh more than their less-supportive counterparts. Wearers of cushioned or supportive shoes will not likely notice any weight concerns, and will more likely find the shoes to be more comfortable than other models due to weight reduction efforts in the latest incarnation of the Nimbus 13. Overall, the Nimbus 13 is a great option for runners who enjoy a soft ride, ample cushioning, and a comfortable fit.

Review by Brian O'Connor

We thank the great people at Asics for sending us the Nimbus 13 for review. This didn’t influence the review of the shoe, written after running more than 30 miles in it.

Let us know what you think of this shoe in the comments!

  • Asics Gel Nimbus 13 Price Comparison:

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