Official: men’s 8.8 oz / 250 g (US9) / women’s 7.8 oz / 221 g (US8)
Sample: men’s US 10.5 = 9.35oz / 265g
Stack Height: 35mm heel / 27mm forefoot
Available 4/5/2022 $140 US / Mid March 150€ in the EU
First Impressions and Fit
First things first: The new Saucony Ride 15 looks amazing! I actually wasn’t very impressed by the design when I first pulled them out of the box. But I also came home late from a business trip, I was tired, and the lighting was far from optimal. But as soon as the sun rose the next day I fell in love with the colorway of my sample pair. The light green base color together with the wine-ish and especially the indigo blue accents just scream “It’s spring! Go out and run!”.
Besides the color the first thing that came to mind when I put the Ride 15 out of the box, was how light these shoes are! It’s really striking!. When you see the big stack of the midsole you have to think that this shoe is a lot heavier – but it isn’t. My scale showed me an amazing 265g / 9.35oz for my sample in size US 10.5 / EU 44.5. This is 41 grams or 1.5 oz lighter than the Ride 13 I weighed for comparison. And the 14 was about the same weight as the 13 and even a little bit heavier.
This puts the Saucony Ride 15 in a whole new weight class. And while it undercuts other shoes like e.g. the New Balance 1080v11 (282g in US 10.5) with 1mm less stack front and back and same 8mm drop – which has been as good as it gets for daily trainer cushion to weight ratio. In terms of cushioning it now is up there with the luxurious models like Saucony’s own Triumph, the 1080 I just mentioned or the ASICS Nimbus. But at a far lower weight and a far lower price. Well done Saucony!
In terms of fit everything is like we know and expect it from Saucony. The Ride 15 is true-to-size with a good heel hold and a lot of wiggle room in the toe area. The toebox seems to be wider than prior Ride versions, but that doesn’t sacrifice any parts of the lockdown. The feet sit securely within the shoe and especially the midfoot hold is as great as I expected it – thanks to the A-strap built into the lacing system.
Saucony uses a quite soft to the touch dual layer engineered mesh for the Ride 15’s upper. The structure of the outer layer changes from heel to toe. The built in ventilation holes get bigger towards the front of the shoe and provide a very breathable experience especially in the forefoot area. Even the internal material layers are perforated and therefore increase the airflow through the upper.
The medium padded tongue is gusseted and molds nicely around the midfoot. I’m happy to report that Saucony toned down the overly plush padding that could be found in the prior Ride versions and now hits the sweet spot. Tongue, heel and collar offer just the right amount of padding to protect you from any discomfort that might occur through the (flat) laces or the rigid heel counter. The latter wraps quite wide around the heel and offers some more of that inherent stability.
The midfoot hold is excellent thanks to the already mentioned A-strap, which reaches all the way down to the footbed. I loved this feature in last year’s Endorphin Pro 2 and I’m also loving it in the Ride 15. As a runner with some minor stability control needs, a great lockdown is key to using neutral running shoe models without any regrets.
In terms of overlays there’s not much going on besides the two big Saucony waves on both sides of the midfoot, where they offer some additional structure to the upper.
Everything gets completed by a quite soft toe bumper upfront and a small pull tab in the back.
While Saucony managed to nicely tone down the upper to everything you need and nothing you don’t, I strongly believe that most of the weight savings come from the mid- and outsole. The new PWRRUN formula feels very light under foot. In fact I get vibes of some of the competitor’s supercritical- or infused foams. I think the closest might be Brooks’ DNA Flash which e.g. can be found in the Hyperion Elite. And while Saucony doesn’t mention what exactly they changed in their EVA/TPU blend, I can imagine that putting any kind of gas into the midsole might be the reason for its lower weight and the softer sensation (or more of the same gas than before).
In comparison to the pair of Ride 13 I have at hand, the new PWRRUN feels a whole lot softer when I press my thumb into the midsole. It’s still not the softest midsole foam out there, but it’s also not harsh by any means. Together with the new PWRRUN+ insole you get all the dampening and protection you need. Especially felt are that shock vibrations get almost completely filtered. And while there isn’t the fun bounciness some shoes offer nowadays, the protective and light sensation under foot offers another taste of fun.
I’m unfortunately still recovering from an injury and therefore I am not able to yet get a longr un in for this review. But I can imagine the Ride 15 being an excellent companion for even the longest of your sessions. The 27/35mm stack – which leads to an 8mm drop – put the Saucony Ride 15 up there in the max cushion category.
Besides the bigger stack, the midsole is also 2mm wider in the forefoot and also got a new beveling front and back.
And while the changes in the forefoot seem minor, the difference in the heel is striking and leads to a smoother transition from heel to toe.
In the forefoot the bigger difference is the flex of the shoe.
Gone are the deep flex grooves of the prior Ride 13 and 14. The result is less flex in the forefoot and the actual flex point moving further back towards the midfoot. On the run this leads to a little more rockered sensation than before with the flex being more snappy when you pick up the pace and get on your toes.
One more note: I just got my Ride 15s in from my balcony where they spent the night in freezing temperatures and the midsole foam felt like a brick. This dramatically changed after it warmed up – it got its soft sensation back. Keep that in mind as the Ride quality might differ quite a bit depending on the temperatures you run in!
Even the outsole of this year’s Ride is completely revamped. Saucony got rid of a whole lot of the outsole rubber that we’ve seen in the previous models. The outsole looks much more like the outsole of the Endorphin line now. Obviously this big change contributed quite a bit to the tremendous weight savings of the Ride 15. But the ride characteristics also get influenced by the new outsole design.
I just mentioned the flex point being moved further towards the midfoot. But there’s also a very deep guidance line, which is sculpted all the way from the heel going through the lateral side until it ends at your pinky toe. This also helps guiding and rolling you through your stride which the Ride 15 does very efficiently.
In terms of traction there’s nothing to report here. We have nice sunny weather here in Germany right now and the Ride 15 did just fine on all roads and park walking trails. As I haven’t seen any other reports I assume we get the same XT-900 rubber which we are used to. If that’s the case I expect good traction in dry conditions and “okish” traction in wet conditions. I’ll report back as soon as I run the Ride 15 in bad weather.
A slight negative that might go along with the big weight savings in the outsole department could be a less durable shoe. There is much more exposed midsole foam now which could wear down quicker. But I wouldn’t be too concerned about this possible issue, given the great durability that we’ve seen from similar Saucony outsoles in the past and the strategic coverage here. e.g. the last few Kinvaras or the Endorphin Shift looked quite similar or even more exposed and both shoes did fine in terms of durability.
Before I report my experiences with the new Saucony Ride 15 I have to give you a little disclaimer: I’m still recovering from an injury which prevents me from running faster paces for now. Therefore keep in mind that all my experiences with the Ride 15 have been just easy and some steady running, which translates to paces between 4:30 to 6:00 minutes per kilometer (7:15 – 9:40 min / mile). I’ll update this section as soon as I manage to push the pace a little faster but will say these kinds of paces are typical daily training paces for many target runners for the Ride 15.
What I’ve experienced so far with the new Ride 15 is a pleasant and smooth ride. I know it hasn’t been everybody’s favorite, but I got along really well with the Kinvara 11, its transitions just were made for my stride. And now I feel the exact same with the Ride 15 despite its higher stack and drop. It doesn’t matter on which side of the described pace range I run, the Ride 15 just feels so smooth. It doesn’t have the “oomph” or bounce of some other modern shoes and therefore maybe lacks a little fun. But the new PWRRUN composition for sure is softer than before and also gives me some “super critical foam vibes”, because it feels so light under foot.
We sometimes say at RTR, that an upper “disappears on the foot” while running. And while this might be also true for the Ride 15, the amazing sensation here is that the midsole disappears under foot as well. Sure it has all the protection you need and also offers great vibration dampening and some pop (probably a little more than any PWRRUN midsole so far). But first and foremost it feels nearly weightless. It’s almost the opposite of bottom heavy if that makes sense.
Conclusions and Recommendations
After last year’s minor update Saucony completely overhauled the Ride in its 15th iteration. The obvious story here is the massive weight drop of roughly 1.5 ounces. But there are so many more things that have changed and led not just to a new, very light Ride 15, but also to a very, very smooth ride.
There’s the higher stack and a new lighter and softer PWRRUN formula which lets the midsole almost disappear under foot. There is a very much reduced outsole with a big guidance groove which together with the new heel- and forefoot beveling leads to very smooth transitions. There’s a no nonsense upper which breathes well and offers a best in class midfoot hold. There’s a wide platform in the forefoot- and raised side walls in the heel area which create some very welcome built in stability. The only downside I can think of is that PWRRUN, while being updated, still isn’t the most inspiring of all foams. If you are looking for a soft bounce you have to look elsewhere. But in every other aspect the Saucony Ride 15 offers a complete, very light and well polished package for a reasonable price.
Nils’ Score 9.35 / 10
Ride 9 (50%) Fit 10 (30%) Value 9 (15%) Style 10 (5%)
Saucony Ride 14 (RTR Review)
Nils: Like already mentioned the new Ride 15 is a whole lot lighter, more stacked, softer cushioned and more forgiving than his older brother. But also the beveling and flex changed. If you prefer more flex upfront you might go with the older Rides. But I think the 15 is an amazing update and therefore an all around better shoe. Both TTS – US 10.5.
Saucony Guide 15 (RTR Review)
RTR Editor Sam tested the Guide 15, essentially the light stability version of the Ride 15. It adds a new Hollow-Tech curved medial stability plastic piece, somewhat more medial outsole coverage and weighs about 0.8 oz more than the Ride 15 at a still very respectable 9.5 oz / 269g (US9). It too is softer, lighter and higher stacked than its predecessor.
ASICS Gel-Nimbus 24 (RTR Review)
Nils: The Nimbus is another classic daily trainer which got a major rework this year. And while the approach is completely different it is another very well executed overhaul! The Nimbus weighs over an ounce more than the new Ride 15, but offers a completely different bouncy, fun ride. Stability and upper comfort are on par with the Nimbus feeling a bit more premium – but also retailing at a higher price. Both shoes cruise very nicely at slow and moderate paces. But while the Nimbus is able to pick it up if needed, the Ride with its weight advantage and a little more snap is the better option for the occasional tempo or interval session. Both are great shoes and it comes down to taste: Do you prefer the light and effortless Ride or the soft and bouncy Nimbus? Both TTS – US 10.5.
New Balance 1080v11 (RTR Review)
Nils: While high stacked, the 1080 isn’t as max cushioned as the new Ride. Both shoes are slightly rockered but the 1080s Fresh Foam X is softer and more bouncy. Because of this the 1080 is a little more fun, but less efficient, less stable and less protective. The 1080 is quite light for its class but the Ride 15 is even lighter. The Ride also offers a superior lockdown and especially at its heel should make a lot more feet happy than the controversial minimal skeletal one of the 1080. The Ride 15 has the slightly better package at a lower price and wins this comparison. Both TTS – US 10.5.
adidas Boston 10 (RTR Review)
Nils: Another daily trainer, another approach. The Boston got completely revamped last year and now has even more stack than the new Ride. But while the Ride is light and nimble at all paces, the Boston’s massive midsole blend of LS, LS Pro and Energy Rods needs some force to get going. It rolls nicely during longer uptempo runs but it’s a quite firm sensation isn’t the best for slower running. The Ride is the better package. Both TTS – US 10.5.
Saucony Endorphin Shift (RTR Review)
Nils: I just revisited my 500km old pair of Endorphin Shifts. The Shift with it’s more pronounced rocker is even more stable than the Ride. But it’s also a lot heavier and uses the older, firmer PWRRUN blend. I loved my pair of Shifts, but I think I found a worthy replacement in the Ride 15. It’s just lighter and therefore more versatile. Both TTS – US 10.5.
Saucony Triumph 18 (RTR Review)
Nils: The Ride 15 is actually higher stacked than Saucony’s own current max cushion option – the Triumph with a new Triumph 20 coming this year that will come in higher at 37/27 so 2mm more at the heel than the Ride 15 with the same forefoot stack. It will weigh about 1 oz more than the Ride 15. But no matter how high the stack is, both midsoles are bottomless. The Triumph’s PWRRUN + foam is bouncier, which comes at the price of a much higher weight in the current version and some bottom heaviness. But while the Triumph is a great option for your easy miles and LSD runs, the Ride wins for its versatility and amazingly light sensation under foot. I can see the Triumph being the better shoe for heavier runners, but the Ride winning for anyone else. Both TTS – US 10.5.
Endorphin Speed 2 (RTR Review)
Nils: The tremendous weight drop of the Ride 15 almost puts it in the same category of uptempo trainers where the Speed sits . Both shoes are very versatile with the Ride being the better option at the slower end of the scale, the Speed the better option at faster paces. The Speed’s PWRRUN PB foam offers more bounce and energy return, but the Ride is almost as leg saving. The Ride is also more stable and its fit isn’t as narrow. If you just can get one shoe I would probably lean towards the Speed (if you are a faster runner). But you can’t go wrong with the Ride either. Therefore get both and have a great rotation. Both TTS – US 10.5.
Puma Velocity Nitro 1 (RTR Review)
Nils: While both being traditional daily trainers, the Ride’s weight and midsole geometry make it feel more modern than the Puma. It’s over an ounce lighter, more stable and comfortable. The Puma Nitro supercritical foam is softer and bouncier than Saucony’s PWRRUN, but that’s the only advantage I can see. Win for the Ride! Both TTS – US 10.5.