ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15 vs. 16 review

ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15 already provided a soft ride for those long runs. Learn what changed and whether the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 would better or worsen your running experience.

NEW! ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 vs. ASICS GEL-Cumulus 17 and ASICS GEL-Cumulus 17 vs. ASICS GEL-Cumulus 18

The ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15 and the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 are ASICS top-of-the-line cushioning running shoes for runners who underpronate or who have a neutral gait.

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The biggest change that ASICS made in the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15 to produce the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 can be found in the midsole.

The ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15 has a Solyte midsole while the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 has a FluidRide midsole.

While both midsole materials are light, durable, and provide cushioining, the FluidRide midsole of the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 has bounce back properties that should make your runs feel a little bit more effortless. In other words, you should get tired less quickly.

The second change in the midsole is the amount of GEL cushioning in the heel and in the forefoot. ASICS increased the amount of GEL cushioning in the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 compared to the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15.

If you look at the back of the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16, you can see the GEL unit extending more towards the center of the heel.

And if you look on the lateral side of the forefoot, you can also see more GEL jutting out of the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 compared to the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15.

These are all visual signs of the increase in GEL cushioning. However, because the midsole foam was changed, we should also expect a change in cushioning due to the midsole itself.

The midsole of the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 is thinner in the forefoot than the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15, meaning that there is less midsole foam, so also less cushioning there.

And indeed, when looking at running shoe lab test data, it is evident that that ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 has less forefoot cushioning but more heel cushioning than the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15 for men.

The women's versions of the running shoes are slightly different in that the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 has more cushioning both in the forefoot and in the heel than the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15.

What is evident for both men and women is that the heel cushioning of the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 far exceeds that of the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15, making the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 a good running shoe for heel-strikers.

Another difference is that the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 lies closer to the ground than the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15, so should make you feel a little bit faster.

The uppers of the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 and 15 have not changed much compared to each other. They both consist of a combination of breathable mesh with stitched-on overlays that wrap the midfoot and the heel, and no-sew overlays elsewhere to provide structure and a more custom fit without causing irritation points.

And the overlays are similarly placed – with a few minor exceptions – on both running shoes. So if you are switching from the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15 to the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16, the upper should feel very familiar.

ASICS maintained the Guidance Line vertical flex groove in the outsole and the Guidance Trusstic System for an efficient gait cycle.

And while the amount of horizontal flex grooves has not changed in the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16, the shape, layout, and construction of the rubber lugs in the outsole have changed somewhat.

While flexibility is hard to judge visually, running shoe lab tests have revealed that the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 is somewhat stiffer than the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15.

The women's version of the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15 weighs approximately 9.5 oz (269 grams) and the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 weighs 9.4 oz (266 grams). The men's versions of the shoes weigh 11.6 oz (329 grams) and 11.9 oz (337 grams), respectively, with the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 being the heavier one.

Either running shoe should be able to offer you a comfortable ride. Whether you choose to go with one or the other would largely depend on whether you want more heel cushioning or not, since the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 16 offers more of it than the ASICS GEL-Cumulus 15.

Note: The weight of a running shoe depends on the size of the running shoe, so any weights mentioned in this review may differ from the weight of the running shoe you choose to wear. Running shoes of the same size were compared for this review.

The two links above will take you to Amazon.com where you can read more about the running shoes.


This review falls under: ASICS

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