You know the deal - with outrageous colors and a performance-oriented ride, the Asics Gel Noosa Tri 7 is a bold billboard advertising your speed.
- Fresh Design: The performance characteristics of the latest Noosa don't change much from version 6, but the look is fresh, with glow-in-the-dark accents for a little added flair.
The Noosa Tri 7 is definitely best suited for a more "outgoing" runner, but this shoe isn't just a fashion play. The real reason the Noosa party keeps raging on is the loyal following it has built up among runners who love the shoe's responsive ride and close fit.
On a technical level, the latest Noosa isn't a radical departure from prior versions. Testers couldn't tell a difference between the Noosa 6 and Noosa 7 out on the road, which is a good thing. The upper remains close and comfortable, and still breathes well thanks to the open mesh. We detected no seams or other hotspots that would prevent us from going sockless in this shoe.
Testers liked that the Noosa rides on the firmer side but lays down smoothly. The shoe feels flatter than its 9mm offset would suggest. The bit of pronation control offered in this shoe gives some support to pronating runners but doesn't get in the way of those in the neutral crowd who are also big fans of the shoe.
Because this is the Noosa after all, let's spend just a second on this shoe's looks. All testers liked the visuals overall, but a few had fond memories of the drawings and doodles that were featured on the Noosa 6. In their place, you get additional glow-in-the-dark accents. Charge 'em up under a bright light for 10-15 minutes and you'll get...about 5 minutes of glow. Even after the shoes have been out in the daylight a good long while, the glow in the dark just doesn't last that long. Interesting idea, but maybe more of a fun gimmick than a safety feature.
All told, the Noosa is much more than a one-trick pony. In addition to all the flair, you get a well-engineered shoe that’s ready for some serious training and racing.
Just like past Noosas, this one wraps your foot and has a narrow fit.
The mid/outsole of the Noosa 7 looks just like the DS Trainer 17, but looks can be deceiving. The Noosa's ride is noticeably firmer.
I found the transition to be just OK - it's a little too stiff for what I prefer. But if you want a more responsive shoe with some pronation support in the Asics line, the Noosa is it.