Sunday, December 10, 2017

Brooks Running Fall 2018 Previews: New Ricochet & Bedlam, Levitate 2 all with DNA AMP and Fit Knit Uppers, Ghost 11 and Glycerin 16 with DNA Loft, Cascadia 13 and Pure Grit 7

Brooks Running Fall 2018 Introductions
Brooks Running Fall 2018 Introductions
 From Top Clockwise: Levitate 2, Ricochet, Ghost 11, Glycerin 16, Bedlam
Brooks went big at the recent The Running Event with new models, updates and an innovative new approach to measuring runners and rapidly making near custom running shoes.
  • two new models, the performance Ricochet and support Bedlam with the PU DNA AMP midsole material first seen in the Levitate 
  • new FitKnit uppers all three DNA AMP models
  • new technologies in old standards with a new softer DNA Loft foam in the Glycerin 16 and Ghost 11
  • a new modern look across the line, other more traditional colors available
  • most striking of all, Brooks with partners Supefeet and HP, demonstrated live measurement of runners as they would be in stores and then custom building of a Levitate variant on the show floor in a manufacturing cell (see our article covering Fit Station here)
From runner scan as would be done in a running speciality store, to last selection, based on arch length to custom firmness molding all done in a few minutes. The manufacturing will be in the USA by Superfeet.

Brooks showed us two new models with their DNA AMP midsole, the Bedlam and Ricochet aw well as an update to the original Levitate.

DNA AMP is a PU (polyurethane) midsole with a TPU outer skin Brooks claims that PU provides "unparalleled energy return". To deliver "amplified experience" the PU midsole is encased in a TPU skin. TPU it is used in many ways in the midsole and even uppers and in harder plates in midsoles such as in most Boost shoes, to here as a skin. The skin is supposed to resist horizontal expansion of the midsole as forces are applied to deliver the fullest energy return or more accurately really lowest energy loss possible from the rest of the midsole.

The ride feel in the Levitate 1 (RTR review) was in our experience is quite unique, well controlled, very well cushioned without being overly soft as we found the Glycerin and very smooth on both landing and push off in similar fashion to a hydraulic piston but not exactly highly responsive.

Ricochet ($120)
Weight: US M9 10.3 oz/292 g W8.5 9.2oz/261 g
Offset: 8mm
Available Oct. 2018
Brooks Running Ricochet
The performance trainer Ricochet which combines DNA AMP underfoot and Brooks BioMoGo DNA EVA blend below should liven things up while retaining the characteristic energy return and smooth feel of the DNA AMP. 

As with other DNA AMP shoes the Ricochet has Brooks new FitKnit upper with a hidden heel wrap which instead of padding the entire achilles and heel collar pads it down below the knit cuff 
Shoe illustrated is the Bedlam but all 3 DNA AMP models have the same connection
To compensate for the lack of a highly padded collar all three DNA AMP shoes with their FitKnit uppers connect the eye stay, the last lace loop to the heel collar with the lace.
The outsole has somewhat less rubber coverage than the other two models and is narrower overall under mid foot in line with the faster purpose of the Ricochet.

We see the Ricochet as a livelier and more energetic, although somewhat heavier, alternative to the Launch and Ghost. As with the original Levitate we suspect it will run lighter than its actual weight.

Bedlam ($150)
Weight: US M9: 11.2 oz/318 g  W8.5 9.9oz/281 g
Offset: 8mm
Available Sept. 2018
Brooks Running Bedlam
The Bedlam can be thought of as DNA AMP alternative to Brooks Transcend, a guided stability shoe, with in the case of the Bedlam, Brooks saying it provides "holistic support".  Following the recent trend in stability, it has no medial post of firmer material. To provide the extra touch of stability three elements are incorporated. First, Guide Rails of of firmer EVA wrap the foot where the DNA AMP midsole meets the upper, the hard to see black walls in the picture above.
Second, as shown below the medial mid foot  FitKnit is denser and more supportive than the lateral side and in a design touch is also patterned more prominently. 
Finally, the outsole is yet more full contact than the already very full contact Levitate's with shallower front flex grooves.


Brooks Running LEFT: Bedlam RIGHT Levitate 2
Watch our YouTube: Brooks Introduces the Bedlam and Levitate 2

Levitate 2 ($150)
Weight: US M9 11.2 oz/318 g W8.5 9.9 oz/281 g
Offset: 8mm
Available August. 2018
Brooks Running Levitate 2
The Levitate 2 gets a FitKnit upper which eliminates all the overlays in the previous model. There were a few at mid foot. The breathability appears improved up front.
Brooks Running Levitate 1
The front toe area in the Levitate 1 is quite pointy and the denser mesh over the toes fairly stiff and extensive. The Levitate 2 appears to soften that area and the toe front appears more rounded.

Watch our YouTube: Brooks Introduces the Bedlam and Levitate 2

Glycerin 16 ($150)
Weight: US M9 10.6 oz/301 g  W8.5 9.4 oz/266 g
Offset: 10mm
Available June 2018

The Glycerin 16 gets an engineered mesh upper. In combination with the patterning of the midsole side walls we think the Glycerin gets a modern fast look.  The 15 had a more conventional, yet still superb mesh upper with overlays. 
Brooks Running Glycerin 16
The Glycerin 16 gets the new Brooks DNA Loft foam midsole, replacing the Super DNA found in the Glycerin 15. DNA Loft is Brooks softest foam and  is a "finely calibrated mix of DNA foam, air and rubber as Brooks softest feel and ride, engineered to provide a softer feeling underfoot without losing responsiveness and durability."  We found the Glyercin 15 to be overly soft for our tastes, even in a premium trainer, and hope the Glycerin 16 and Ghost 11 get some pop along with the softness.
The outsole is similar to Glycerin 15. 

Ghost 11 ($120) GTX ($150)
Weight: US M9 10.6 oz/309 g W8.5  9.5 oz/269 g
Offset: 12mm
Available August 2018
Brooks Running Ghost 11
The popular Ghost gets DNA Loft and an engineered mesh upper with strategically placed stretch and structure. We really like the clean modern look of the new Ghost best of all the new road models.

Cascadia 13 ($130) GTX ($160)
Weight: US M9 11.9 oz/ 337 g W8.5 10.6 oz/301 g
Offset: 10mm
Available June 2018
Brooks Running Cascadia 13
We loved the look of the new Cascadia, Brooks heavy and heavy duty trail runner.  Bold and purposeful in black with just the right highlighting. The orange pivot point inserts are softened a bit.
It looses about 0.3 oz in weight over the 12 through the use of simplified rubber print overlays. The tongue has no foam but felt adequately padded and along with the heel collar are designed of hydrophobic materials for fast drying. The sockliner is perforated for faster drying. The orange loop straps extend all the way to underfoot for support.
 A gaiter trap is integrated into the pull on loop.
 The outsole remains very similar to its predecessor and includes a Ballistic Rock Shield.

Pure Grit 7 ($120)
Weight: US M9 9.3 oz/264 g W8.5 8.7 oz/247 g
Offset: 4mm
Available July 2018
Brooks Running Pure Grit 7
The Pure Grit returns with an engineered mesh upper for version 7. Its weight drops approximately 0.4 oz.
It features, as in the Cascadia, a hydrophobic tongue and heel collar.

The outsole features sticky rubber a Ballistic Rock Shield and the lug pattern is more strategically designed with a combination of splay lugs, mostly upfront ,and hex lugs at mid foot. The splay lug shapes are designed to deflect and conform to terrain. We suspect they will also contribute to a decent feel on pavement as well. The Pure Grit 6 had a more uniform hexagonal lug pattern. This new lug pattern likely also helps contribute to the drop in weight. 

Visit our 2018 Previews Page here for more details on 2018 run shoe, apparel, and gear, 13 brands so far.

Watch our YouTube Channel for 2018 Run Previews and Wearable Tech/GPS Reviews here
Visit our Index Page here for over 80 in depth 2017 shoe and gear reviews

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