Inov-8 TerraUltra 260 Review Part 1: Introduction | Inov-8 Trail Running Shoes
Introduction to the Inov-8 TerraUltra 260
The New Inov-8 TerraUltra 260 is a Zero Drop trail running shoe designed to be well cushioned but still give good ground feel. The fit is similar to Inov-8’s standard width but with a more rounded toe box to allow the foot to spread better when it touches the floor. This gives the runner better stability, shock absorption and spring from the feet.
The outsole has 4mm lugs made from Inov-8’s Endurance Rubber, which is designed to offer both durability and a good grip on trail type terrain. The midsole is very flexible, to both allow the foot to function more in the shoe and allow the shoe to mould to the ground to give better traction. The Dynamic Fascia Band inside the midsole mimic’s the job of the Planta fascia and gives the shoe a good springy feel.
Back in July Inov-8 launched the TerraUltra G260 which was the first running shoe to use Graphene in its outsole. As you may have guessed, the TerraUltra 260 is a very similar shoe! Both shoes are Zero Drop, the midsole thickness and material are the same as in the outsole pattern. Where they differ is in the outsole material and the upper material. The G260 has an outsole made from a mix of sticky rubber and Graphene whereas the G260 uses Inov-8’s Endurance Rubber. The G260 will offer a better grip on wet surfaces and the outsole will last longer. The G260 upper is made from a very tough material with Kevlar overlays to last as long as the other components of the shoes. The TerraUltra 260 has a more conventional mesh upper.
Our initial thoughts are that the TerraUltra 260 has a nicer fit and feel from the box. The mesh upper pulls nicely around the foot and it’s easy to forget you have a shoe on. The G260 upper is designed for toughness and as such feels stiffer and doesn’t pull around the foot quite as well. The toe box feels more boxy and broader in the graphene version. This feel in the toe box is similar to that of an Altra shoe. The TerraUltra 260 has a bit less volume in the toe box and has a more flexible feeling from the box than the G260.
vs. Altra Superior
The TerraUltra 260 is ideal for trail runners who want a more natural ride with some ground feel and room for their toes to spread. Its main rival will be the Altra Superior, which is also Zero Drop and has the trademarked FootShape Toe Box, plus some ground feel. The Altra Superior offers a broader, roomier toe box, a softer more cushioned ride and the option of a rock plate. The rock plate is a removable insole inside the shoe. The Inov-8 TerraUltra 260 has a deeper lugged more aggressive outsole though, better suited to the muddier trails we get in the UK. It also has more ground feel and a feels naturally springy.
We will be carrying out a full review of the Inov-8 Terraultra 260 once we have used them for a few hundred miles!
Charlie @ NorthernRunner.com