Tuesday, July 18, 2023

Brooks Hyperion GTS Review: 10 Comparisons

Article by Sam Winebaum

Brooks Hyperion GTS ($140)


The Hyperion GTS is a traditional lower stack geometry light trainer with a DNA Flash nitrogen infused supercritical foam midsole and a warp knit upper.  My test pair weighs 7.84 oz / 222g (US8.5) with a measured heel of 28mm and spec drop of 8mm. 

It includes Brooks Go-To-Support (GTS) Guide Rails with the same foam as the midsole on the lateral side and a somewhat firmer medial glued in piece as shown below. 

Designed for guidance in the line of travel as opposed to underfoot blocking or control of pronation, as a neutral shoe runner I have never much cared for GTS or other similar top of midsole rails plastic or firm foam plastic pieces on the medial side as they stiffen transitions off the heel. Here at long last they succeed for me with GTS a plus in a shoe with a quite unstructured and roomy upper. RoadTrailRun will also soon have a review of the non GTS Hyperion.


Traditional lower stack trainer with modern supercritical foam and substantial outsole

While not deep, the cushioning is vibration absorbing, resilient, and with the outsole in the mix very responsive and quick off the ground.

A rarity: a light trainer with some support features.

Go-To-Support GuideRails are unobtrusive and effective even for this neutral shoe runner and are at long last worth having on board

Comfortable roomy and secure upper with a wider unstructured toe box than old school light trainers

Brooks lightest trainer

No skimping on the outsole coverage while the shoe also remains flexible. 


Runners with a narrow forefoot and with speed work their  focus for the shoe may wish for a bit more front lock down.


Estimated Weight: men's 8.05 oz  / 228g (US9)  

  Sample: men’s 7.84 oz / 222g (US8.5)

Measured Stack Height: men’s 28 mm heel / 22 mm forefoot ( 8mm drop spec) 

$150  Available now.

First Impressions, Fit and Upper

Sleek, low slung and colorful in neon green, the Hyperion reminds of old school lower stack trainers but clearly also has not only a modern vibe but thoroughly modern materials and construction.

The wrap knit mesh upper does a great job balancing hold with an almost relaxed fit for a light and fast trainer and has decent breathability. This absolutely not a shoe you can’t wait to take off after a hard run!

The upper has no overlays beyond the red Brooks logo overlay which actually extends broader than the red and black in the same lime green as the shoe and delivers solid if not total mid foot support. Speaking of support, the higher side rails contribute to the support acting more like raised sidewalls we now see so often than hard pieces glued in and disconnecting the feel.

The tongue is non padded with a gusset to the midsole but only on the medial side for some support there. 

The combination of relatively broad laces and tongue make for an always secure fuss free on the run lace up.

The heel counter is quite rigid and notably more towards lace up than at the achilles. Clever as a stiffer front of heel counter contributes to the excellent rear to mid foot lockdown and support with the upper to the front not all laden with overlays or stiff mesh.

The toe box is basically unstructured but for a moderately substantial toe bumper with some give.

This upper for sure won’t remind you of those foot and arch crushing uppers of old school light trainers and race flats.

The fit up front is quite broad and for sure comfortable. My narrow to medium width feet are fine upfront for mellower paces but there is some give upwards as the pace picks up. 

Wider higher volume feet than mine will be very happy here, while narrower ones may find the toe area a bit too friendly at faster paces in overall volume given its unstructured nature . 


The midsole foam is Brooks DNA Flash, a nitrogen infused EVA. Flash is somewhat denser and more responsive as opposed to springy (Zoom X) or bouncy (FuelCell) and is quite similar in feel to Saucony’s PWRRUN Pb in the earlier Endorphins or a bit softer flavor of the firmer Hyperburst in shoes such as the Razors from Skechers.

The Go-To-Support or GTS element is particularly well matched to the rest of the midsole here, a first for me in Brooks GTS or really any “rails” support shoe. I have found such rails stiffen the rear flex forward of a shoe impeding transitions and making their presence known as a disconnect in feel. 

Lateral Side

The lateral rail is just a raised midsole sidewall as often seen in supercritical foam shoes, barely noticed while the medial side is a glued in insert of somewhat but firmer foam. 

Medial Side

I sensed its presence providing me a touch of extra support but it was never in the way of moving forward as  the medial rail on all prior Brooks have been for me.

With what I measure as about a 28mm heel and with 8mm drop, so 20mm at the forefoot ,we are clearly not in super shoe stack heights range with those shoes about 10mm more but there is plenty of vibration absorbing quick and snappy responding cushion. Those who miss the lower stack shoes of days gone by but don’t miss their harsh feel will like the midsole feel here. The Hyperion has a nice snappy flex back a ways towards midfoot about where the medial rail ends. 


The arrow shaped outsole is copious in coverage and depth and is both well decoupled at the rear and has many small holes through to the midsole upfront to provide flex and eliminate any slapping, and even at slow paces. 

There should be plenty of durability here as it seems Brooks went deep even if that adds some to weight. Grip was excellent on wet roads.

The outsole is very well integrated in feel to the midsole. No harsh rubber layer here and it also contributes to a through the entire stack responsive feel with no disconnects between midsole and outsole. I would add that the front outsole and platform felt notably broad and stable.

Ride, Conclusions and Recommendations

Who says the lower stack trainer is a dinosaur? Not me when it has supercritical foam and a well integrated outsole as the Hyperion does.  The ride is surprisingly versatile and is even pleasant at slower paces. 

I do think it is good to mix the big and often plated max cushion marvels with lower stack flexible shoes to work the feet differently and actually feel the road. The Hyperion delivers that with the “improvement” over such trainers of old a responsive and resilient foam that doesn't stray into the over soft and bouncy. We will soon have our review of the Hyperion without GTS which is lighter but I found no negatives for once with the rails here and even sensed they kept me better aligned in the direction of travel than might be expected given the relatively unstructured midfoot of the upper. 

The upper is just fine. Very comfortable, secure, and actually quite roomy and for me a touch too much so and unstructured at the toe box. But this is in no way a sloppy upper with poor hold, the dense but breathable mesh doing its job along with the very stout rear hold.

Of course, there are several options emerging in its class I will compare below but in the extra support area few, if any. The Hyperion GTS is a great choice for your faster daily workouts and runs, for the high school runner needing a single all around lighter shoe, and those who seek some old school low slung road feel updated with super foam for daily training and even shorter racing distances. Of course its support features are useful for those who feel they need some stability without overdoing it.

Sam's Score: 9.29 /10

Ride 9.2 (50%): A just fine lower stack superfoam ride

Fit 9.4 (30%): wonderful upper with just a bit more front lockdown needed

Value 9.1 (15%): a bit of a stretch at $140 but likely durable and for sure versatile

Style 9 (5%): neon green is never out of style but a bit too old school for my taste.


10 Comparisons

Index to all RTR reviews: HERE

Hyperion Max (RTR Review)

With 2mm more stack height of the same DNA Flash foam and a stable blocky rear geometry, the stiffer (even though plateless) Max is somehow actually 0.5 oz lighter than the GTS in my US8.5. I actually prefer the GTS approach to stability over the Max’s broad and squared off heel approach.

Hyperion Tempo  (RTR Review)

Lighter by 0.8 oz and lower stack with a very firm and I thought poorly integrated outsole, other than weight, the Hyperion GTS improves on Tempo in every way in ride comfort and versatility.

Brooks Trace  (RTR Review) and Revel  (RTR Review)

The Trace is 1.4 oz heavier and $50 less than the Hyperion. It has a 12mm drop vs 8mm. Its upper and midsole foam are not nearly as fine in fit and ride dynamics but OK. On a budget Trace, otherwise Hyperion.

The Revel is the same 8mm drop as the Hyperion and about 1 oz heavier so a closer match to Hyperion than Trace. Also $100 it is a fine value but, as with Trace, has not as resilient or dynamic a midsole or as smooth fitting an upper. 

Saucony Kinvara 13 (RTR Review) and 14 (RTR Review)

The Kinvara 13 is 0.8 oz lighter than the GTS and has the same stack height at the heel with 4mm more forefoot stack of PWRRUN EVA/TPU blend foam, so it is more cushioned in feel.  It has almost no outsole rubber. The outsole of the Hyperion GTS and its DNA Flash provides a more responsive quicker rebound while the Kinvara has a more natural softer bouncy feel. Both have some support elements although the Kinvara's is entirely coming from its midsole sidewall geometry without any rails so support is less pronounced. The uppers are similar in fit and materials even as the Kinvara is $120 vs $150 for the Brooks.

The Kinvara 14 upped the stack height yet more to 31 mm heel / 27 mm forefoot yet dropped its weight another 0.2 oz over the 13 so is about an ounce lighter than Hyperion. Not as natural and easy flowing as the 13, the benefit of the 14 is more cushion but maybe a touch less stability.  The Hyperion while heavier and not as cushioned has the advantage of its DNA Flash foam and a snappier ride with stability provided by GTS and its far more extensive outsole.

Saucony Sinister (RTR Review)

As with Hyperion Sinister is an all supercritical foam plateless shoe. The Sinister foam is softer,  more reactive with a bit less stack height at 25mm heel / 19mm forefoot stack but with a more aggressive outsole that is actually trail worthy.  It pulls far head of the Hyperion with a stunning light weight of  5.45 oz  / 155 g (US9), Hyperion GTS being 7.84 oz. Its upper is far more performance oriented in fit, especially a midfoot where it has an array of super effective webbing straps which actually also provide some support.  Wider higher volume feet will be happier in the Hyperion while lower volume and “racing” oriented feet will find the Sinister fit pretty incredible. So incredible that in combination with its stout full outsole this road race flat also makes a good smooth trails racer as Adam and I both found out. The comparison with the non GTS Hyperion will be interesting but as a light trainer Hyperion GTS as a full on racer and training speed shoe than can go far and to some trails if need be Sinister. 

NNormal Kjerag (RTR Review)

This “trail shoe” weighs less than Hyperion at 7.59 oz / 215g  on a somewhat lower stack height of  23.5 mm heel / 17.5 mm forefoot (6mm drop spec). It has a road and of course trail worthy Vibram MegaGrip outsole and a light and roomy yet totally secure Matryx upper. It has a similar riding midsole of supercritcial foam. A bit firmer due to its lower stack and outsole, it gets very close to Hyperion on road and pulls away on trail being also the shoe Kilian Jornet won Hardrock and UTMB in 2022 both in records and in the same pair so durability is likely somewhat better as well. The rub is that it is $195 but if total versatility with high performance and durability is what you are seeking it is to be considered. 

Nike ZoomX Streakfly  (RTR Review)

Considerably lighter at 6.0 oz  / 170g (US9) with a higher stack height of 32mm heel / 26mm forefoot the Streakfly has the weight and soft springy advantage of Zoom X over the Hyperion’s more solid and stable DNA Flash. The Streakfly does have a small midfoot stabilizing plate. The Hyperion is more practical and stable as a light low stack daily trainer the Streakfly is more fun and faster but not as versatile a trainer. 

Puma Liberate Nitro  (RTR Review)

One of my favorite light trainers of the last couple years, the Liberate is 1.3 oz lighter and sits at the same heel height of 28mm but with a 10mm drop so it has a thinner forefoot. It too has a nitrogen infused super foam midsole that is softer and less dense than the Brooks but does not have the support features of the GTS. As a light all around trainer the Hyperion despite being $40 m ore is a better pick. If you need a more pure speed days shoe and short plateless racing shoe then the Puma.

Also please read Michael Ellenberger's Comparative Review of the Hyperion (non GTS) to Launch 10 HERE

Tester Profile

Sam is the Editor and Founder of Road Trail Run. He is 66 with a 2018 3:40 Boston qualifier. 2022 was Sam’s 50th year of running. He has a decades old 2:28 marathon PR. These days he runs halves in the just sub 1:40 range if he gets very very lucky, training 30-40 miles per week mostly at moderate paces on the roads and trails of New Hampshire and Utah be it on the run or nordic skis. He is 5’9” tall and weighs about 164 lbs, if he is not enjoying too many fine New England IPA’s.

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Samples were provided at no charge for review purposes. RoadTrail Run has affiliate partnerships and may earn commission on products purchased via shopping links in this article. These partnerships do not influence our editorial content. The opinions herein are entirely the authors'.

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