Asics Nimbus vs Cumulus : An In-Depth Analysis of the Running Shoes

Asics Nimbus vs Cumulus

Asics running shoes have been widely discussed as one of the top two running shoes available. In fact, the debate circles between Asics and Brooks on which shoe brand is better for runners.  If, you’re looking to upgrade your Asics running shoes?

ASICS has a long lineup of great running shoes that would literally take all day to break down. That’s why we’ll be looking at the most popular models from ASICS for runners; the Nimbus 18 & 19 against Cumulus 18 & 19

This articles gives information on the two shoes, pros/cons, and compare and contrast between the two - Asics  Nimbus vs Cumulus.

A Quick "Did You Know" Before We Get Started: 

Did you know... ASICS is an acronym derived from a Latin phrase (Anima Sana in Corpore Sano), which translates to a sound mind in a sound body. It’s this philosophy that has guided every ASICS concept, innovation, idea, and product to deliver excellence. And as technology advances, the brand keeps on pushing the limits to achieve comfort, support, and a superior ride.

ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 18 Running Shoe, Carbon/Black/Cockatoo, 5 M US
ASICS Women's Gel-Cumulus 18 Running Shoe, Indigo Blue/Silver/Pink Glow, 10 M US
ASICS Women's Gel-Cumulus 19 Running Shoe, Black/Silver/Ink Peacoat, 11.5 Medium US
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 19 Running Shoe, Black/Onyx/Silver, 9.5 M US
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 18 Running Shoe, Carbon/Black/Cockatoo, 5 M US
ASICS Women's Gel-Cumulus 18 Running Shoe, Indigo Blue/Silver/Pink Glow, 10 M US
ASICS Women's Gel-Cumulus 19 Running Shoe, Black/Silver/Ink Peacoat, 11.5 Medium US
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 19 Running Shoe, Black/Onyx/Silver, 9.5 M US
1,867 Reviews
779 Reviews
137 Reviews
481 Reviews
$112.99
$95.47
from $55.00
$86.11
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 18 Running Shoe, Carbon/Black/Cockatoo, 5 M US
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 18 Running Shoe, Carbon/Black/Cockatoo, 5 M US
1,867 Reviews
$112.99
ASICS Women's Gel-Cumulus 18 Running Shoe, Indigo Blue/Silver/Pink Glow, 10 M US
ASICS Women's Gel-Cumulus 18 Running Shoe, Indigo Blue/Silver/Pink Glow, 10 M US
779 Reviews
$95.47
ASICS Women's Gel-Cumulus 19 Running Shoe, Black/Silver/Ink Peacoat, 11.5 Medium US
ASICS Women's Gel-Cumulus 19 Running Shoe, Black/Silver/Ink Peacoat, 11.5 Medium US
137 Reviews
from $55.00
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 19 Running Shoe, Black/Onyx/Silver, 9.5 M US
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 19 Running Shoe, Black/Onyx/Silver, 9.5 M US
481 Reviews
$86.11

Nimbus 19 Review: 

There’s no question about it; the Nimbus 19 is the flagship neutral trainer for the entire brand. You can tell from the higher price tag that there’s a lot going on here. The Nimbus itself has been a flagship, high mileage trainer for ASICS for years and is generally described as an ultra-cushioned trainer. 

But over the years, this shoe has gone through several changes and redesigns to what you see now.

Sale
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 19 Running Shoe, Flash Coral/Dark Purple/White, 5 M US
487 Reviews
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 19 Running Shoe, Flash Coral/Dark Purple/White, 5 M US
  • FlyteFoam Midsole Technology. 3mm of additional height on women's models helps relieve achilles tension.
  • FluidRide Midsole: FluidRide provides the ultimate combination of bounce back and cushioning properties with reduced weight and exceptional durability.
  • Rearfoot and Forefoot GEL Cushioning Systems: Attenuates shock during impact and toe-off phases, and allows movement in multiple planes as the foot transitions through the gait cycle.

PROS

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    Vibrant and attractive color scheme
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    Great traction
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    Extremely breathable uppers

CONS

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    Highest price tag of all
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    Not as cushioned as you would expect

Cumulus 19 Review: 

The CUMULUS 19, on the other hand, is an ever-reliable daily trainer that doubles as a long-run shoe built to last for miles. However, you’ll notice that the shoes stiffness and weight is not really ideal for faster workouts such as quick tempo runs and intervals.

Sale
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 19 Running Shoe, Black/Cosmo Pink/Winter Bloom, 7.5 Medium US
197 Reviews
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 19 Running Shoe, Black/Cosmo Pink/Winter Bloom, 7.5 Medium US
  • FlyteFoam Midsole Technology
  • Fluid Ride Midsole: Fluid Ride provides the ultimate combination of bounce back and cushioning properties with reduced weight and exceptional durability.
  • Rear foot and Forefoot GEL Cushioning Systems: Attenuates shock during impact and toe-off phases, and allows movement in multiple planes as the foot transitions through the gait cycle.

PROS

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    Soft and fluid ride
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    Supremely cushioned uppers and midsole
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    Incredibly durable shoe

CONS

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    Bulky and stiff at first
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     Narrow toe box might restrict movement

Full Evaluation - Cumulus 19 vs Nimbus 19

Uppers: Asics Nimbus 19 vs. Cumulus 19

The first thing that instantly catches your attention with the Nimbus 19 is the color. They make the shoes quite eye-catching. ASICS designed the uppers to be almost seamless for better performance and longevity. Likewise, the knit fabric results in breathable and soft feeling uppers.

However, this breathability comes at a cost; you can expect quite a some amount of water to flow in the shoes in rainy conditions. Combined with the natural lace system, you get an upper that is both firm and reliable while not constricting your feet.

With the Cumulus 19, no frills have been spared on the uppers. So while it still exhibits seamless construction just like its predecessor and the Nimbus 19, there are some notable differences. For starters, the Cumulus 19 omits the ASICS logo to allow for slightly more flexibility.

Secondly, the Cumulus 19 is all about cushioning and padding even on the upper overlays. The tongue, heel counter, and sock liner are incredibly soft and forgiving even in long runs. But I did notice that the uppers hug the foot a bit more tightly making it ideal for athletes with slender feet.

Sole Unit: Asics Nimbus 19 vs. Cumulus 19

Now here’s where the ASICS Nimbus 19 excels. This trainer makes use of the completely new cushioning midsole known as FLYTEFOAM. For those of you who don’t know, this is ASICS’s newest tech with improved foam materials that weigh over 55% less than the average foam. What’s more, this foam has a particularly interesting springy feel to it.

By combining this new FLYTEFOAM system with the old GEL system, ASICS manages to provide ultra cushioning while still keeping the weight down. And I do have to admit; the sole unit definitely has a spring as you transition through your stride.

The Cumulus 19, on the other hand, boasts of cloud-like shock absorption thanks to some top of the line cushioning. That’s because while it still continues to employ ASICS good old GEL technology, there’s a secret weapon.

The manufacturer incorporated FluidRide midsole to provide users with more responsiveness and a crisper ride. The outsole of the Cumulus 19 boast of AHAR rubber construction for high traction and a longer lifespan. It’s this same durability that makes the Cumulus 19 the economical choice for high mileage runners.

Verdict

In the end, it’s pretty apparent that the GEL Nimbus 19 is the top dog when it comes to the neutral trainer category. With their combination of the age-old GEL system and ASICS’ most advanced FLYTEFOAM midsole material, these shoes promise a lot of cushioning. But if we’re being honest, you don’t get that less weight by packing in a lot of cushioning; so yes, the Nimbus 19 definitely skimps on the padding.

And ASICS definitely upped their game by adding special features on the Nimbus 19 such as Motion Fit for less pressure points on the forefoot. Not to forget the ComfortDry Sockliner that wicks away moisture to keep your feet entirely dry. But if you ask me, the fully breathable uppers have the thermoregulation issue covered.

But if you’re looking for a lot more comfort and durability, then the Cumulus 19 is the trainer for you. The Cumulus is one of the most enduring series in the ASICS line up, and none is more hardier than the 19th adaptation.

With the Cumulus 19, you can expect a soft, comfortable ride that is ideal for those long and demanding runs. But as explained above, the shoe does sacrifice something in the way of responsiveness. It packs a whole lot more cushioning which means more bulkiness as well as stiffness. But given the lower price range, the Cumulus 19 is still the most economical choice for high mileage runners.



ASICS Cumulus 18 vs. Nimbus 18: 

Both the ASICS Cumulus 18 and Nimbus 18 fall in the neural cushioning running shoes category – just like the 19th adaptations. This means that they can be worn by neutral runners and even the runners with pronators.

That said, it’s evident that the Nimbus and Cumulus 18 are not running shoes designed for support and stability. Instead, they feel more geared towards comfort and a softer running experience. The Cumulus 18 is a simple, basic trainer that provides a great amount of cushioning for more comfort while the Nimbus 18 delivers unmatched softness and quite the plush ride.

Full Evaluation - Cumulus 18 vs Nimbus 1​8

Uppers: Asics Nimbus 18 vs. Cumulus 18

While eerily similar, the uppers of the Asics Cumulus 18 and Nimbus 18 still have some substantial differences, especially in construction. Both these shoes come with the famous no-sew overlays that not only decrease irritation points, but also increase comfort levels substantially. However, the Nimbus 18 has narrower overlays that the Cumulus 18. For an even deeper analysis, we dissect these two shoes here.

But while the overlays are narrower in the Nimbus 18, ASICS spread them over the uppers so you get a more glove-like fit. That said, people with wider feet will appreciate the Cumulus 18 since not only do you get more toe room, but the overlays stretch along with the mesh for a more custom fit.

Sole Unit: Asics Nimbus 18 vs. Cumulus 18

Here’s another area where both these shoes differ completely. While both these 18th adaptations posses similar two layered GEL cushioned midsoles, the Nimbus takes things a bit further. Nimbus 18 comes with an external heel counter that offers extra support around the heel.

Similarly, I noticed that the
Nimbus 18 exposes far more of this GEL cushioning in the forefoot than the Cumulus 18 does. This is a very clear indication of the amount of cushioning we can expect from both these shoes. But studies have shown that the extra 3mm of height on the Nimbus is engineered to take stress off women’s heels.

Lastly, both these adaptations come with the Guidance Line vertical flex groove that helps you achieve efficient and smoother gait. They also contain a midfoot shank that helps maintain integrity and support under the midfoot. Interestingly though, the lack of excess cushioning makes the Cumulus 18 far more stable and flexible than the Nimbus 18.

Asics Cumulus 18 Review: 

PROS

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    More affordable of the two
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    Superior lightweight and flexible performance
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    Ideal for wider feet

CONS

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    Low-grade sock liner
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     Not as much cushioning midsole
ASICS Women's Gel-Cumulus 18 Running Shoe, Aqua Splash/White/Pink Glow, 7.5 D US
781 Reviews
ASICS Women's Gel-Cumulus 18 Running Shoe, Aqua Splash/White/Pink Glow, 7.5 D US
  • I.G.S (Impact Guidance System) Technology: ASICS design philosophy that employs linked componentry to enhance the foot's natural gait from heel strike to toe-off.
  • FluidRide Midsole: FluidRide provides the ultimate combination of bounce back and cushioning properties with reduced weight and exceptional durability.
  • Rearfoot and Forefoot GEL Cushioning Systems: Attenuates shock during impact and toe-off phases, and allows movement in multiple planes as the foot transitions through the gait cycle.

Asics Nimbus 18 Review: 

PROS

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    Offers the softest, plushest ride
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    Well padded with extra cushioning
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    More support for heel and arches

CONS

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    Can be a bit stiffy and bulky
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     Slightly more expensive
Sale
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 18 Running Shoe, Lapis/Silver/Sport Pink, 7.5 M US
639 Reviews
ASICS Women's Gel-Nimbus 18 Running Shoe, Lapis/Silver/Sport Pink, 7.5 M US
  • FluidRide: FluidRide  provides the ultimate combination of bounce back and cushioning properties with reduced weight and exceptional durability.
  • Rearfoot and Forefoot GEL Cushioning Systems: Attenuates shock during impact and toe-off phases, and allows movement on multiple planes as the foot transitions through the gait cycle.
  • FluidFit:  ASICS FluidFit upper technology combines multi-directional stretch mesh with stretch reinforcements that adapt to the athlete's foot, creating a truly customized glove-like fit.

Verdict

No matter which way you look at it, the ASICS Cumulus 18 and Nimbus 18 are two running shoes that look eerily similar and very much alike. It’s evident that the Nimbus and Cumulus 18 are not running shoes designed for support and stability. Instead, they feel more geared towards comfort and a softer running experience.

The biggest difference between the two 18th adaptations of ASICS is that the Cumulus 18 is a simple, basic trainer that provides a great amount of cushioning for more comfort while the Nimbus 18 delivers unmatched softness and quite the plush ride. Simply put; the Nimbus 18 is engineered for more of a luxurious, comfortable feel while the Cumulus 18 is meant to provide an almost minimalist, basic feel.

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Last update on 2018-04-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API