Last updated: 27-Feb-20
This is the fourth edition of a popular trail running shoe with several updates and extras. The main update is the outsole pattern for “even greater traction and higher durability”. This version of the shoe also has a water-resistant and reinforced upper.
In the same collection there are a range of choices, too, such as a GTX (Gore-Tex) shoe, a CS (Climashield technology for extra breathability and protection against dirt in the forefoot), a wide fit and a nocturne shoe with reflective details for running after dark.
I am a big fan of the Salomon Speedcross and have worn it through all its incarnations from the original to the Speedcross 4. I use the shoe for a range of terrains, from dusty paths to rocky trails through mountains and from muddy hills to forest tracks.
- Water resistant upper (there is a GTX version, too)
- Abrasion resistant upper
- Durable PVC toe box
- Anti-debris mesh/gusseted tongue
- Quicklace system
- Lace pocket
- Sensifit system to securely cradle the foot for comfort and support.
- LT Muscle – Lightweight, shock absorbing midsole compound.
- Injected EVA for further shock absorption and underfoot cushioning.
- OrthoLite sockliner for plush underfoot cushioning; treated with anti-microbial protection.
- Contagrip rubber outsole
- Wet traction lugs – measuring 6mm each, the arrow shaped lugs “generate extreme purchase”, particularly on wet, slippery and muddy trails.
- Mud guard to prevent mud from building up on the outsole
- Drop – 10mm.
- Weight average 290g to 300g per shoe
- RRP around £110 (some variances for different styles)
Pros: What’s good about the Salomon Speedcross 4 shoe
Above everything, it’s the comfort and fit of this shoe that I most like. I have a long and narrow foot and the women’s UK8.5 fits perfectly. If you have a wider foot, you can choose to buy the wider-fit shoe.
The heel cup is not too deep and it has good levels of cushioning around the ankle. I have had Achilles tendon problems and I find the Speedcross 4 does not irritate my tendons like other shoes.
The lacing system and sockliner allows for a supportive fit. The lacing is not tied in the traditional way instead it has a toggle fastening. If you have ever worn Salomon ski boots you’ll be familiar with the system. It allows for a secure fastening all the way along the shoe.
The shoe never rubs my feet. It simply fits perfectly.
Out on the trails, I enjoy the cushioning in the footbed and sole. Some people prefer a more natural feel and therefore a shoe with less of a cushioned sole but I prefer a bit of comfort and bounce.
The Salomon Speedcross 4 is not as cushioned as, say, the On shoe or the Hoka One One shoe, but in my mind it offers just the right amount of cushioning. As I have said, I am a big fan of many elements of the Salomon Speedcross shoe.
The grip is also good in most conditions. I feel confident running down grassy slopes and on rocky trails. Because of the cushioning, the shoe is good for a variety of different terrains, including hard-packed forest trails and sections of tarmac.
The design of the studs – and the spacing of them – means they do not get clogged up with mud, which allows for consistent grip. I can’t say I have noticed the traction being any better than before but I am hoping the soles will be more durable than previous versions of the Speedcross.
Previously, I have found the soles do wear out faster than other trail shoes, so it will be a bonus if the soles are longer-lasting. Time will tell on this point.
The uppers of the standard Salomon Speedcross 4 are now water resistant. This is a great feature. I prefer not to wear a running shoe with a Gore-Tex liner because they usually make my feet sweat but a water-resistant upper is welcomed by me.
The mudguard and abrasion resistant features are common on many trail shoes and it’s great that Salomon have included these as standard. I feel like the shoe is fairly durable and thoughtfully designed.
The price of £110 is competitive with other trail shoes and if you shop around you can find various discounts, so long as you are not choosey about the colour.
This is another plus point of the new collection of Salomon Speedcross 4 shoes: They come in a fantastic range of bright colours. It’s great to wear a trail shoe that is colourful.
Cons: What’s not so good about Salomon Speedcross 4 shoe
The standard fit is now slightly narrower than before. There is a wider fit shoe that you can choose to buy. Personally, I am delighted by the slightly narrower fit but if you have a medium to wide foot you’ll need to make sure you try on the shoe first.
The lacing system isn’t foolproof. I find the laces loosen through the toggle after about six miles of hill running. It’s not a lot of loosening but enough to make me stop to re-toggle the lacing system before, for example, running downhill.
This is not a big criticism because many other laces loosen on the shoes but with the Salomon you are reliant on the toggle working, rather than being able to tie the laces securely yourself.
When running downhill for a while in wet conditions the insole of the shoe moves forwards and creases up under the forefoot. I have found this in other Speedcross shoes and friends who run in the shoe have said the same.
It is only when the shoe is wet and the downhill is steep and prolonged. I plan to change the insole for something a bit stiffer in the forefoot to stop this happening.
Other people say they stick the footbed to the inside of the shoe. It’s not the only shoe that has this issue but it is a bit annoying.
The soles offer good traction in a wide variety of conditions and terrain but are not always so secure on wet rock. However, they are one of the best all-round options for trail and hill running.
The Salomon Speedcross 4 is a firm favourite for me. It’s a go-to shoe for a wide range of off-road terrain and conditions. It performs well and is an excellent and comfortable fit. There are a few niggles but not enough to put me off buying a big stock of these (in lots of different colours).
Other shoes you may want to try:
Saucony Peregrine 7
Saucony Peregrine 8
Inov-8 Mudclaw 300
Brooks Puregrit 6
About the writer: Fiona is a keen runner, preferring off-road and hilly to flat and road. She lives in Scotland where the weather is fickle so needs to be prepared for all conditions. See more of what she writes at Fiona Outdoors.
All images Fiona Outdoors except when stated.
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