Thursday, December 21, 2023

ASICS GT-2000 12 Review

 Article by Matt Kolat 

ASICS GT-2000 12 (€160  / $140 / £140)


Asics GT-2000 needs no introduction but for those of us living under a rock for most of the past 15 years - it is Asics’ mid tier stability shoe. Typically if you are a fan of Asics and need stability you are one of two people, you are either a Kayano person or a GT 2000 person. 

What’s the difference you ask? Well to me Kayano is your choice if you prefer a more plush, softer ride geared almost exclusively for slower running. GT-2000 is a choice for those of us who still need a very similar level of stability as Kyano but in slimmer, snappier, firmer albeit less plush package. As you can probably tell, having run in a number of both Kayano and GTs - I am more of a GT kind of person. The key selling point for me when it came to choosing between the two above models was the snap which is delivered in GT and is lacking in Kayano while both provide a very similar level of stability. Does the shoe still hold up to its offering? What’s changed over the years? Let’s have a look together!


  • Snappy ride, for a stability shoe

  • Great stability

  • Long lasting outsole

  • Perfect grip on wet pavement (hello Scottish winter)


  • Lacks the fun of a modern super trainer


Sample Weight: men’s 11 UK / 12 US  11.3oz / 320g US9  9.5oz / 270g US

Stack Height: men’s  32.5mm heel / 24.5mm forefoot ( 8mm drop spec) 

€160  / $140 / £140  Available now at our partner Sports Shoes HERE

First Impressions, Fit and Upper

The shoe definitely fits true to size, my normal size 11 UK fits perfectly. The fit itself I would describe as being on the narrower end in the midfoot and forefoot, average in the rear. If you are a person with slightly wider feet I would recommend trying them in person or ordering the wide version.

When I first put them on the step the feel was not very plush albeit appropriately soft (the upper not the midsole). Initially, walking around the house, I thought that there was some hidden medial post as I felt a slight push against my midfoot. That was completely artificial and disappeared during the first run, part of the breaking in process I guess.

The upper itself is made from a high quality jacquard mesh which is on the thicker side, with a reinforced toe bumper. This might be very useful in the winter but hard to tell how it will translate into breathability in a hot summer (not a problem for me as I live in Scotland). The laces are flat and grippy, almost as good as the laces on Hoka Mach X (best laces ever in my humble opinion), the tongue is very thin but gusseted and therefore stays in place nicely. Big Asics logo overlays on both sides of the shoe contribute to support on offer, GT-2000 will not let you feel wobbly for a moment, even while taking corners. The heel counter is as sturdy as it gets and it flares out, which can sometimes translate into a looser hold closer to the achilles, but I did not get that feeling while running. On the contrary there was no rubbing and a very firm hold of the ankle - another great positive if one is in the market for a stability shoe.

Midsole & Outsole

What immediately strikes me about the outsole of GT-2000 is that the designers at Asics really put some effort into designing it. There are multiple cutaways both horizontal and vertical which beautifully translate into a very flexible toe off, to be honest I don’t remember, at least in recent years a stability shoe which toe off was so smooth. 

I think what contributes to the smoothness of the toe off is mostly the midsole/outsole cutaway which runs lengthwise from the back of the shoe towards the front but from midfoot onwards it bends towards the lateral side of the shoe. The outsole rubber is relatively thick however that does not translate into bottom heaviness. Most of the miles I’ve run through a rather dreich (Scottish for filthy weather) winter and I’ve never slipped once nor felt lack of confidence on downhills due to poor grip. What is more, after around 40 miles there is virtually no wear and tear (nota bene I weigh around 187 pounds on a good day) - this shoe will last or at least it’s outsole will.

The midsole is where the magic happens in most shoes and GT200 is no different. This is by no means a blocky old fashioned foam that feels like a brick. The midsole is relatively soft (for a stability shoe!) but don’t expect much energy return. There are no traditional postings in the midsole to prevent excessive overpronation but worry not. The geometry of the shoe does the job of stabilising one's gait just fine. The official name of the midsole foam is Flytefoam Blast Plus supplemented by the Asics Pure Gel. This combination was introduced last year in the Cumulus and Nimbus models and I believe is making strides in the running communities. Asics has truly reinvented itself from a very traditional brand to a trend setter. From what I hear from fellow runners, GT-2000 is back on the map and some neutral runners are reaching for it as it feels more snappy for speedwork than some of the more neutral models (more about that in the next section).  

Ride, Conclusions and Recommendations

This is one of those reviews where despite my trying really hard I really struggle to find a big issue with this shoe or something “wrong” with it’s ride quality. Perhaps if you are looking for a shoe with lots of bounce, a super trainer, this is not it. But that does not mean it isn’t fun or soft or did I say fun already? 

I really enjoyed every mile in this shoe for a number of reasons. It does not behave like a traditional stability shoe, while being very centred it never forces any gait correction nor pushes against your arch. 

The transitions are very smooth and if I could give a ‘Toe off of the Year’ award it would hands down go to GT-2000. 

The shoe feels much lighter during the run than one could expect which is one of the many positive features that ASICS have treated us to. 

In terms of distances it can cover, I would think for most runners this will be a shoe for anything from a 5k to a half marathon or perhaps even a marathon for those of us blessed with better biomechanics and not needing as much cushion as most of us. 

With regards to types of run it is best suited for I would say for me this shoe best rotation is somewhere between daily trainer and uptempo trainer, never had I any problems picking up the pace in it. Surface wise I would probably stick to pavements but I don’t think GT-2000s cannot handle packed trails. Unfortunately the weather did not allow me to test them on such a surface. 

In terms of recommendations I would not change very much in GT 2000 12 - it’s a great shoe. The one thing, as mentioned in the first paragraph of the review, is the upper - it’s pretty thick, which might not be ideal in the summer. However worry not ASICS tends to release summer specific versions of shoes with more breathable uppers - I would be surprised if they didn’t in the case of this shoe.  


Hoka Gaviota 5 (RTR Review)

Gaviota and GT-2000 can be seen as direct competitors. I would say that between the two Gaviota is a tad softer but also a tad less stable. GT-2000 excels in terms of providing the running with a more universal ride (Gaviota is not as good at picking up the pace).  

GT-2000 12 Available Now!
Use our code RTR235 for 5% off all products

Tester Profile

Maciej 'Matt' Kolat- 38 years old, hailing from Poland but pounding Scottish pavements and trails since 2007. Mainly runs shorter distances on pavement 5-10 km and reserves longer runs for the beautiful Scottish Glens. Matt’s opinion sometimes may differ from otherRTR testers as he is the slowest of the bunch (5k at 25:38). Matt also uses running as a way to stay healthy having shedded 100 lbs so far (and counting).

Comments and Questions Welcome Below! Please let us know mileage , paces, race distances, and current preferred shoes

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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