Shoe Review: ASICS GEL-Nimbus 23
Nimbus, now softer.
The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 23 is the latest edition of the long-running road shoe but with a cushier ride than before. The updates make it a great shoe for everyday training and long runs, whether you’re a new runner or a seasoned marathoner.
An updated version of ASICS GEL technology in the heel combined with FlyteFoam cushioning throughout the shoe enhances the ride. This GEL-FlyteFoam combo gives the Nimbus 23 a soft, comfortable underfoot feel while maintaining the liveliness you want for an engaged run.
Fleet Feet reviewers logged their miles in the new Nimbus to see how it fits and how it rides. Here’s what they thought.
ASICS GEL-Nimbus 23
9.2 oz (W), 10.9 oz (M)
13 mm (W), 10 mm (M)
Familiar, Comfortable Fit for Long Distances
The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 23 is a comfortable long-distance running shoe thanks to its easy fit, making it great for most types of runners.
A soft engineered mesh upper drapes over the Nimbus that’s easy on your foot and roomy enough for a wide variety of foot shapes. Fleet Feet reviewers specifically praised the shoe’s toe box.
“There’s plenty of volume in the toe box,” one reviewer says. “It’s accommodating for a wider foot and toe splay. For me, that is fantastic.”
The spacious forefoot makes the shoe really comfortable for long distances. Testers say it doesn’t squeeze their feet or put them to sleep, so it’s easy to wear as the miles add up.
The upper is also constructed from 20 percent recycled material, aligning with ASICS’ brand-wide efforts to create sustainably sourced products. Both the ASICS GEL-Nimbus Lite 2 and the ASICS GEL-Kayano Lite incorporate recycled materials to help divert waste from landfills.
The mesh upper feels comfortable wrapped around your foot, and feels durable enough for hundreds of miles of use without needing the addition of supportive overlays. Plus, different colors woven throughout the mesh give the model a modern look.
One feature testers pointed out right away was the heel fit. The internal heel counter works to keep your foot in place, and it does its job well.
“I instantly noticed how secure the heel counter is,” one reviewer says. “It wraps my Achilles tendon and feels secure through the entire gait cycle.”
Updated Cushioning Delivers Premium Feel
Runners looking for soft, comfortable cushioning should check out the Nimbus 23.
The updated heel boasts a new version of ASICS GEL technology. For anyone unfamiliar, ASICS uses gel-like pads in its shoes to help soak up impact and disperse it evenly throughout the shoe. Typically, the GEL pads are in the heel and forefoot.
The new GEL unit in the heel, though, is softer than previous versions. You can see the GEL sandwiched between layers of foam. ASICS says it compresses more in the heel for even easier landings.
Reviewers felt that right away.
“I was impressed by how soft the heel is right when I put my foot in the shoe,” one reviewer says. “It feels like memory foam.”
While the heel is noticeably softer, it doesn’t feel mushy.
Runners who land heel first will like how the Nimbus absorbs the impact and rolls smoothly into the forefoot transition, but it’s just as buttery no matter how you land.
Part of that smooth ride comes from the shoe’s flexibility. Reviewers say the shoe flexes naturally with your foot as it moves through the transition.
“This shoe feels like an excellent all-around trainer,” says another reviewer. “I feel like this is a reliable model that’s built to last.”
ASICS GEL-Nimbus 22 vs. ASICS GEL-Nimbus 23
The most noticeable change from the outgoing Nimbus 22 to the incoming Nimbus 23 is the softer underfoot feel.
Testers noticed the change right away, and that’s a good thing. The latest version feels much softer than the Nimbus 22. It strikes the right balance of cushion and performance for most runners.
Some of the extra softness comes from the updated GEL unit in the heel. You’ll feel the difference, but you’ll also see a clear difference in shape if you look at the Nimbus 22 and Nimbus 23 side by side.
A generous amount of durable rubber on the outsole features an updated pattern. Testers didn’t feel a noticeable effect on the shoe’s feel, and still found it to be durable.
There is also a slight tweak to the lacing system. The eyelets running up each side of the Nimbus 23 are slightly offset from one another, while the eyelets in the Nimbus 22 run in a straight line. Like the outsole, reviewers didn’t notice any performance change, and they had no problems with finding the right fit or the laces staying tied.
The ASICS GEL-Nimbus 23 is better than ever.
The latest everyday trainer from ASICS packs a softer-than-ever ride thanks to an updated GEL unit in the heel, and it provides the same accommodating fit that makes it an ideal running shoe for new runners and veterans alike.
Fleet Feet reviewers love the shoe’s lock-down heel fit and high-volume toe box, but it’s the softer feel and flexible ride that won them over.
“This is a fantastic update, especially for those legacy ASICS fans that may have considered moving away from the Nimbus the last couple of years,” one reviewer says. “If that’s you, you need to give this new version a try.”