The improvements made to the Asics Gel-Cumulus 24 should appeal to fans of this line of shoes and attract new admirers as well, though it struggles to stand out against more impressive (and cheaper) rivals.
- Updated FF Blast midsole
- Cushioned ride
- Comfortable upper
- Better value elsewhere
- Not the bounciest ride
- Not as versatile as other shoes
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Like its stablemate the Asics Gel-Nimbus, the Gel-Cumulus is a long-running and reliable line of running shoes. It’s the kind of shoe you keep using for ever, grabbing the latest version whenever you need a new set.
As a result, there have been few major updates to the Gel-Cumulus – but in the case of the 24, Asics has changed the design substantially, adding its bouncy FF Blast foam to the midsole to liven up the ride and changing the upper.
These changes have improved the shoe, which is a great daily training option, though I’d say it still falls short of the standard of the best running shoes.
Asics Gel-Cumulus 24 Review: Price And Availability
The Asics Gel-Cumulus 24 is available now and costs $130 in the US and £120 in the UK, which is a $10/£10 price increase on the previous version of the shoe. The Cumulus is the cheaper alternative to the similar Gel-Nimbus 24, which costs $160/£165.
Design And Fit
The Cumulus 24’s Jacquard mesh upper is excellent, wrapping the foot comfortably and securely, and the padding around the tongue and collar has been judged perfectly so that it feels luxurious without overheating on sunny runs. The fit was spot-on in my normal size.
In the midsole is where Asics has made the biggest updates to the Cumulus 24, which now has a full-length FF Blast midsole. This is the same bouncy foam used in the Novablast line and the Nimbus 24, and while it has a more muted feel to it than in the Novablast, it’s a step up from the dull Flytefoam used in past Cumulus shoes.
Asics has increased the midsole stack height by 1mm at the heel and 3mm at the forefoot on the Cumulus 24, which reduces its offset to 8mm. There is also some of Asics’s Gel material in the heel and forefoot of the shoe, and the men’s and women’s shoes have different designs to provide specific cushioning.
The outsole has less rubber on it than the Cumulus 23, but it is still well covered and the rubber at the heel is hard-wearing. I had no gripes with grip in the Cumulus 24, and would expect it to be durable too.
The Gel-Cumulus 24 is built to be a cushioned daily trainer that you can pull on several times a week and enjoy a comfortable ride across various types of run. I’ve used it for several easy runs, plus a progression run where I finished at a fast pace before doing some strides.
I found that the shoe did a great job of “disappearing” on the foot, in that the ride feels natural and you quickly forget about the shoe, especially at easy paces. It’s not cumbersome or firm, nor so squishy and bouncy that you notice it with every step.
While it’s not the lightest shoe, weighing 10.5oz/298g in my UK size 9, it felt easy enough to move through the gears in the Cumulus on a progression run. It’s not as speedy as some other cushioned daily trainers, such as the Puma Velocity Nitro 2 or Saucony Ride 15, but the Cumulus offers impressive versatility.
I also found it more comfortable than the Asics Gel-Nimbus 24, partly because the Cumulus has a slightly lower drop at 8mm versus the 10mm in the Nimbus (13mm in the Nimbus women’s shoe) and more cushioning under the forefoot.
Is The Asics Gel-Nimbus 24 Worth It?
I slightly preferred the Cumulus 24 to the more expensive Nimbus 24. It offered greater comfort and I also found it easier to up the pace in the Cumulus. I’m not sure both shoe lines need to exist, given the similarities between them, but I’d go for the Cumulus if picking between the two.
The Cumulus 24 is a reliable pick for a cushioned daily trainer, but I do think you can find better shoes that cost less. The Puma Velocity Nitro 2 is $120/£100 and has a bouncier, more comfortable and quicker ride. The Nike Pegasus 39 is also better in my opinion, with a similarly comfortable ride to the Cumulus but a lighter design that’s more suited to speedier running.
If you’re a long-term fan of the Cumulus I don’t think you’ll be disappointed in the new shoe, and anyone who picks it up will be satisfied by it. However, you can find better value and performance elsewhere.
Nick Harris-Fry is a journalist who has been covering health and fitness since 2015. Nick is an avid runner, covering 70-110km a week, which gives him ample opportunity to test a wide range of running shoes and running gear. He is also the chief tester for fitness trackers and running watches, treadmills and exercise bikes, and workout headphones.