Saucony Endorphin Speed 4 Review: Still The Shoe To Beat

Minor updates see the Saucony Endorphin Speed 4 retain its crown as the best all-rounder running shoe available

Saucony Endorphin Speed 4
(Image: © Nick Harris-Fry / Future)

Our Verdict

The Saucony Endorphin Speed 4 is one of the most versatile running shoes, being comfortable enough for easy daily training but fast enough for speed sessions and races. It’s one of the best running shoes, though the Saucony Endorphin Speed 3 is almost as good—if you can find it in sales.


  • Versatile ride
  • Improved grip
  • Comfortable upper


  • Not as cushioned under forefoot as rivals

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The Saucony Endorphin Speed was launched as a fast training shoe, but quickly became established as one of the best running shoes and one of the most versatile, thanks to its comfortable, speedy ride. Given its popularity, Saucony has mainly stuck to a similar design with subsequent editions of the shoe, and that is still true of the Endorphin Speed 4.

There are updates to the shoe, though, and these have made the ride better at fast paces and improved its grip and fit. Picking up the Endorphin Speed 3 in a sale is still a good option, but the Endorphin Speed 4 is now the shoe to beat for runners looking for a versatile daily trainer.

Saucony Endorphin Speed 4: Price And Availability

The Saucony Endorphin Speed 4 launched in February 2024 and costs $170 from Saucony US (men’s | women’s) and £180 in from Saucony UK. That’s the same price as the Endorphin Speed 3 in the US, but in the UK it’s a £15 price rise. It’s far from a cheap shoe but the price is in line with the best super-trainers from other brands.

How I Tested This Running Shoe

Saucony Endorphin Speed 4

(Image credit: Nick Harris-Fry / Future)

I’ve run just over 30 miles in the Endorphin Speed 4, using it for a mix of fast and slow training runs. I have reviewed all past editions of the shoe, racking up more than 300 miles in the original, as well as a range of the best running shoes from other brands.

Design And Fit

As with each of the three generations of the shoe, the Endorphin Speed 4 has a midsole made from Saucony’s Peba-based PWRRUN PB foam. This is not as soft and springy as some Peba-based foams used by other brands, but still delivers a responsive and comfortable ride, with a Speedroll rocker that helps move you onto your forefoot quickly.

The stack height of the shoe is the same as the Endorphin Speed 3: 36mm at the heel and 28mm at the forefoot for an 8mm drop. This is lower than the stack of the Saucony Endorphin Pro 4 carbon racer, and the Speed sometimes feels less comfortable under the forefoot than higher stack super-trainers and racing shoes.

There is a winged nylon plate running through the midsole to add propulsion without being as stiff and hard as a carbon plate. Saucony has also brought in a new sockliner with the Endorphin Speed 4, which is meant to be bouncier than the sockliners on previous versions of the shoe.

Saucony Endorphin Speed 4

Saucony Endorphin Speed 4, left and Speed 3 (Image credit: Nick Harris-Fry / Future)

By my measurements, the Endorphin Speed 4 has a wider base than the Endorphin Speed 3 through the heel, midfoot and forefoot. Saucony has added some sculpting to the back of the midsole foam and overall the updates have made the new shoe heavier than the Speed 3. The Speed 4 weighs 9oz/255g in my UK size 9, whereas the Speed 3 is 8.5oz/240g.

One change Saucony made with the Speed 3 was a wider design and fit than the Speed 2. I found it a little too wide. The mesh upper on the Speed 4 has more of a locked-down fit and I haven’t had any heel-rubbing with the shoe, which I experienced with the Speed 3. I’d stick to your usual running shoe size with the Speed 4.

The outsole has been redesigned with a lattice pattern on the rubber that covers the forefoot and heel sections, and this has improved the grip of the shoe. I’ve run in torrential rain without slipping on paved surfaces in the Speed 4.

Running Performance

Saucony Endorphin Speed 4

Saucony Endorphin Speed 4, left, and Pro 4 (Image credit: Nick Harris-Fry / Future)

I’ve been a fan of the Endorphin Speed line since its launch and when the Speed 4 landed it slipped straight into my running shoe rotation as the perfect daily trainer for my marathon training. I’ve used it for several longish runs, including a steady hour running just over 10 miles, plus an easy recovery run done the day after a hard workout. It felt great for pretty much everything.

When running faster, the reshaped midsole felt snappier and quicker at moving you onto your toes than the Speed 3, but the Speed 4 remained comfortable and felt natural at slow paces too. The Speedroll rocker is the key feature of the shoe because the Speed 4 is not a particularly bouncy super-trainer. Its speed comes from the smooth, rockered ride, which helps you to keep turning your feet over quickly, with some pop added to your toe-off by the nylon plate.

As with the Speed 3, I got forefoot discomfort on longer fast runs in the Speed 4, which I didn’t get with the Endorphin Pro 4, which has more foam in the midsole. The Speed 4 is by no means uncomfortable, but it is lower-stacked than many super-trainers these days, especially under the forefoot. That gives the shoe a more grounded feel and helps with stability. The Speed 4 isn’t a stable shoe but it’s not as wobbly as 40mm-high carbon racers or training shoes with softer foams in the midsole.

Is The Saucony Endorphin Speed 4 Worth It?

Saucony Endorphin Speed 4

(Image credit: Nick Harris-Fry / Future)

The Endorphin Speed 4 is the best all-round running shoe, though only a small upgrade on the Endorphin Speed 3, so that remains a good option if you see it in sales. The only other shoes I’ve found that come close to the Speed’s versatility are the Adidas Adizero Boston 12—which is more speed-focused and let down by its uncomfortable upper—and the Asics Superblast, which is wildly expensive but lots of fun.

For daily training, the Puma Deviate NItro 2 is another great plated option. While it’s heavier and not quite as fast or comfortable as the Speed 4, it has a better outsole that grips well in wet conditions. 

For those looking for a cheaper alternative, or who don’t want to use a plate for daily training, the New Balance FuelCell Rebel v4 is an excellent, lightweight all-rounder. It doesn’t have the propulsive feel of the Speed 4 when doing long fast runs, but is more comfortable and stable for easy runs while still good for intervals as well.

Nick Harris-Fry
Senior writer

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.