Sunday, August 25, 2019

inov-8 Terraultra G 260 Trail Runner Initial Video Review

Article by Sam Winebaum

Inov-8 Terraultra G 260  ($150)
Update: Read our full multi tester review HERE

Weight: 9.17 oz /260 g
Stack Height: 17mm heel, 17 mm forefoot, 0 drop

The G260 is a zero drop, hard surfaces trail runner with a Graphene infused outsole and a TPU EVA midsole  (Update on midsole). It has a  Kevlar reinforced heel counter, a rugged upper with a roomy, high toe box featuring a stout ballistic nylon toe bumper. It is notably flexible for a trail shoe and has no rock plate . The video below outlines the features and has on the trail footage during my first test run on smoother single track trails in Park City,  Utah Round Valley.
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Curt said...

Yes! Can't wait to hear it. Is anyone going to review the non-graphene option as well?

The Stoat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Stoat said...

I have had both the graphene and normal versions of this shoe. In the current iteration they are very similar with only minor differences to the toe bumper and heel visuals. The graphene toe is a kevlar fabric whereas the non graphene version just has a thick TPU overlay. I can't see or feel any significant difference in the heel beyond the aesthetics. The midsole is identical and the outsole rubber seems to perform similarly, but I haven't tested the longevity of the new graphene shoe. Overall the differences between them are minor and given that the upper and midsole will be dead in 400-500 miles I'm not sure that the graphene is of much benefit to the overall life of the shoe. It is worth noting that inov8 snuck in a change to the upper on the graphene version this year and the current iteration no longer has all the stitched kevlar overlays that the original had. This is a welcome change as the kevlar overlays were stiff and bulky.
Overall this shoe is great. I think that's it's a great replacement for the pearl izumi n1/2 but with a better outsole, roomier forefoot while still keeping a locked down heel and perhaps a touch less bounce. For races longer than 50 miles in rocky terrain I might slip a stone guard under the insole for a bit more stone protection. That said, it's not going to be a shoe for someone who looks for Hola levels of cushioning.

Sam Winebaum said...

Hi The Stout,
Thanks for insights based on your experiences with the G260. I suspect you are right that the toe bumper is Kevlar, sure looks like it. I am getting confirmation as to where exactly they used Kevlar.
Sam, Editor

Anonymous said...

Hi Sam , how would you compare it to Altra shoes (Timp, Superior) since they are both zero drop ?? And is there any chance you will be reviewing VJ Sports Maxx ??

Thanks in advance.

Best regards from Croatia

The Stoat said...

There are some similarities to the older altra superior (3.5) in terms of underfoot feel, but the Terraultra has a touch more protection if I remember correctly (don't have the altras any more for a side by side comparison). The terraultra has a much more secure upper with great heel and mid foot lockdown. Toe box is wide on the terraultra, but not as wide as the superior. The closest shoe that I'd probably compare it to is the Nike terra kiger (3&4), but the upper of the terraultra is more secure and it feels overall more locked down and stable.

Curt said...

Appreciate the point about the Kevlar overlays Stoat. Any idea if the non-Graphene version is softer/more fluid? Some of the folks at Seven Hills Running in Seattle thought it was the superior version.

Sam Winebaum said...

Hi Anonymous from Croatia,
We will be reviewing the VJ M MAXx. Pairs are on the way.
Hi Anonymous,
I have not run the Superior but have Timp and Lone Peak. Terraultra is firmer and more responsive with a superb toe off feel and has a superior foot lockdown and overall stability to those two although so far I think due to the flexibility and stack somewhat less front rock protection. In terms of toe box room the Terraultra has a higher more structured front of toe box, lots of vertical room and no pressure so far on the toes but not quite as wide.
The Stout,
Thanks for chiming in and helping answer questions. Much appreciated.
Sam, Editor

The Stoat said...

@Curt, honestly, if I were blindfolded don't think that I could tell the difference between the current graphene version and non graphine version when running. However, if the folks at seven hills were comparing to the older graphene version then the uppers were very different and I would agree with their assessment. The old graphene upper was more roomy but stiff and folded awkwardly causing hotspots. As far as I'm able to tell, the midsoles are identical. It's also worth pointing out that this shoe is somewhat unusual in that most of the initial squish / comfort comes from the unusually thick (6mm) footbed. The midsole itself is quite firm.

@sam - no problem - I think that they are great shoes!

Curt said...

@The Stoat, that makes total sense. Thanks! Do you know if all the green colorways still use the stiffer uppers? Is it possible to tell the difference in a promotional photo?

Sam Winebaum said...

Curt, I believe if the model is G 260 and not 260 it will have the new upper. Sam, Editor

The Stoat said...

Curt, yes, the green colourway was used in both the original G260 and the updated G260. I'm assuming that most of the old versions are pretty much now gone... It's pretty easy to see the difference as the old version has stitched on Kevlar overlays whereas the new version is all tpu apart from the toecap. As far as I'm aware, the non graphene version has had no changes.