|Type of support||Universal (neutral)|
|Inclination of the sole||4mm|
|Sole thickness (heel)||30mm|
|Sole thickness (forefoot)||26mm|
|Weight (men’s model)||255g|
|Weight (female model)||224g|
In the panel of trail shoes released this year, the Asics Fuji Lite 2 is an excellent surprise . It is a skilfully balanced combination of comfort, dynamism, lightness and versatility for your off-road outings.
FlyteFoam cushioning is one of the strengths of this trail shoe. This new midsole incorporates organic fibers in its composition. The total thickness of the shoe ( 30 mm heel / 26 mm toe) and its low drop (4 mm) provide cushioning that is soft and responsive, light and stable.
The Asicsgrip outsole is the 2nd strong point of the Fuji Lite 2. This sturdy rubber and its 4 mm lugs offer incredible grip on terrains as diverse as forest singles, dirt roads, rocky trails, or even the bitumen.
The upper is normally roomy. The upper is made of a technical mesh made from recycled materials . The brand has thus taken a resolutely eco-responsible turn with this model. Runners sensitive to respect for the environment can thus run with (almost) peace of mind.
The general opinion of runners is that the running sensations are surprising and fun for such a light shoe.(those are their terms!). The only reservation concerns very technical trails where the stability would be less good according to some testers.
To find out if this shoe is for you, read our full review of the Asics Fuji Lite 2 for more information.
When a shoe is inspired by the Hinoki cypress from Mount Fuji, and in addition it bears in its name the highest point of Japan, it is normal that it raises some expectations!
In recent years, Asics had lost the confidence of trail runners, who preferred (often rightly so) other more innovative brands in the field of trail running. With the Fuji Lite 2, the Japanese brand leaves its comfort zone and returns with a rather surprising shoe , combining versatility, lightness, balance, grip, dynamism.
It also demonstrates innovation by adopting the principles of eco- design , a practice that is still far from being generalized in the field of trail or even running shoes.
In short, on paper, the Fuji Lite ticks a lot of boxes. In reality, does this shoe live up to the ambition displayed by Asics, “infallible grip on all terrains and in all conditions”? Will it allow the Japanese brand to impose itself (finally?) in trail shoes?
This is what we will check in more detail below.
Adhesion and durability
The Asicsgrip rubber is one of the 2 strengths of the Fuji Lite 2 (patience for the 2nd), the one that grips your pleasure until the end of the race. Unveiled in the spring of 2021 by the Japanese brand, this new outsole technology is a little gem of grip, stability, and robustness , wrapped in a case of flexibility (do you have the image?!).
Rubber covers the entire outsole. Combined with the 4 mm arrow-shaped lugs, it offers incredible grip on a wide variety of terrains: paths, gravel, soft ground, even asphalt. Some runners are also eager to test them on moderately snow-covered roads, just to confirm their excellent sensations.
In addition, the grip and stability of rubber go well with the flexibility and responsiveness of the midsole. The combination of the 2 offers a harmonious whole unanimously appreciated by the testers.
Finally, the trailers emphasize the excellent traction of the shoe whatever the surface (wet or dry).
Finally, the only downside noted by some runners in this ocean of perfection is a certain lack of stability on really very technical terrain.(narrow, winding, rocky), or on steep or rocky descents.
Here is the 2nd strong point of the Fuji Lite 2: its midsole. The
new FlyteFoam cushioning is a concentrate of softness , lightness , and rebounding energy which pleasantly surprised the runners who tested the shoe.
Asics has opted for an eco-responsible design with the integration of organic fibers in its midsole (at least 10% cellulose nanofibers recycled from sugar cane waste). They bring a pleasant touch of resilience and lightness to the foam.
The thickness of the sole ( 30 mm under the heel ,26 mm under the toes) as well as the low drop (4 mm) offer incredible soft cushioning without hindering forward propulsion. The effectiveness of the cushion is thus optimal on the trails, prolonged descents, and even on the roads. The runners felt that the shocks were well absorbed. They were able to roll out the km while keeping their legs (almost) cool!
In the end, the midsole of the Fuji Lite 2 is an almost perfect balance between comfort/responsiveness and lightness/stability.
In the suggestions for improvement made by the testers, they would appreciate an overall thicker sole at the level of the front of the foot and reinforced protection at the ball of the foot. This would further smooth out uneven ground and extend outings on more technical terrain.
They also wonder about the durability of such soft foam… We’ll talk about it again in a few months!
Foot support (upper)
Asics has also used eco-design for the upper of its Fuji Lite 2. The upper is indeed made of a technical mesh made from recycled materials . For the structure, the Japanese brand saw two things: a light and breathable outer mesh, and an inner underlay to reinforce the frame of the upper. The result of this combo is a pleasant feeling of comfort and well-adjusted support for the foot, which is not unlike that of road shoes to some testers. The double layer also provides some durability.
With a weight of 255 g for the men’s version and 224 g for the women’s version, we are on a light shoewhich is unanimous among the runners.
As for the options, the Japanese brand made choices that were variously appreciated by the trailers who tested the fuji Lite 2:
- a lace-up pocket that allows them to be stored without tangling the pencils – what are commonly called legs among runners
- a roomy toe box, in a standard way
- a well placed and rigid stone guard providing protection for your toes
- finally, a non-integrated and voluminous tongue , which is almost unanimous against it among the trailers because it is the door open to untimely entry of pebbles into the shoe
Finally, some runners have reservations about the upper not locking enough on very technical trails. Others fear foot colds in winter, caused by too much ventilation of the mesh during cold or snowy weather episodes.
The two qualifiers that often come up in the sensations described by the testers are “surprising” and “fun” . Surprising are the softness, dynamism and responsiveness of the FlyteFoam midsole. Doing hill sprints would almost become a pleasure!
Surprising, the outsole is also certainly surprising, with a grip that would even make ultra trailers want to compete with the best candidates of Koh Lanta .
Outings on all types of terrain are fun, with dirt roads and moderate trails being those where the qualities of the Fuji Lite 2 are best expressed.
Riders unanimously find the ride to be both light, flexible and snappy, including on the road.
Running with the Asics Fuji Lite 2 is therefore both a pleasant surprise and a game. It’s the type of shoe that makes you feel like you’re running fast in all circumstances – and that’s always good for you
. ego !
The Asics Fuji Lite 2 is a surprising and fun trail shoe , light and flexible, comfortable and dynamic . Its versatility allows it to find its place between shoes for fast races and those for ultra distances. It is particularly suitable for fast daily fartlek-type training on trails or dirt roads, and for rather short races where speed can be expressed.
Finally, she succeeded in reconciling the Japanese brand with the disappointed runners who had turned away from her for several years, for lack of real innovation in the field of trail running. With the Fuji Lite 2, you will certainly love waking up the trail samurai in you!