Who should buy the New Balance Summit KOM GTX

The New Balance Summit KOM GTX is a well-cushioned and rock-plated train shoe best suited for:

  • neutral trail runners and hikers
  • long distance and marathon trail running races

New Balance Summit KOM GTX new balance

Waterproof trail shoe

One of the upgrades that trail running shoes usually get is the addition of a waterproof feature. The New Balance Summit KOM is among these shoes, as they introduce a GTX version of their well-liked trail runners.

New Balance Summit KOM GTX waterproof feature

In a nutshell, the shoe retains the structure and features of the original Summit KOM and is just taken up a level with the inclusion of the Gore-Tex membrane.

Summit KOM GTX is breathable and durable 

The upper, apart from the Gore-Tex waterproofing, still possesses the same look and feel, which is due to the breathable mesh that provides a sock-like fit.

New Balance Summit KOM GTX breathable and durable 

The sole unit also retains the features of the original shoe, which includes a REVlite midsole and the well-known, durable Vibram outsole.

Not for wider feet

Although the New Balance Summit KOM GTX claims to be true-to-size according to their website, many customers have found the shoe to be narrow-fitting and, thus, necessitated a size up to fit comfortably.

New Balance Summit KOM GTX Not for wider feet

This may not apply to everyone, so it is best for buyers to try the shoe from a store to ensure accurate sizing. The Summit KOM GTX model is specifically made for men and is available in men’s sizes, as well as men’s width options of D - Medium and 2E - Wide.

Unparalleled traction

The MegaGrip outsole variant of Vibram has always been popular for its unparalleled traction and durability.

New Balance Summit KOM GTX Unparalleled traction

The outsole provides maximum ground contact, yet also reinforced on the shoe’s high-wear areas.

Offers flexibility and grip 

The unique tread pattern of the Vibram MegaGrip outsole allows for multi-directional grip, especially on uneven technical trails.

New Balance Summit KOM GTX Offers flexibility and grip

The outsole’s lugs have ample space between one another to ensure flexibility without the loss of traction.

Lightweight cushioning 

REVlite is one of the reliable shoe technologies of New Balance running shoes, and with the Summit KOM GTX, it delivers the same steady ride and lightweight cushioning that runners are familiar with.

 New Balance Summit KOM GTX Lightweight cushioning 

REVlite is made from refined ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA), which ensure 30% more comfort, responsiveness, and durability that the industry standard. This tech is available in other popular New Balance runners, such as the 890 v6.

Provides adequate air circulation 

A Rock Stop plate is placed in between the REVlite midsole and the outsole. This feature protects the foot and offers stability by dispersing impact during landing.

New Balance Summit KOM GTX Provides adequate air circulation 

It is especially useful when running on uneven surfaces, such as rocks and debris. The mesh upper of the New Balance Summit KOM GTX promotes adequate air circulation.


It has tiny pores that prevent debris from entering the shoe, but not at the expense of ventilation.

New Balance Summit KOM GTX Supportive 

The mesh is combined with synthetic materials on the sides of the shoe, which act as overlays that provide support and structural integrity. The Summit KOM GTX gets an extra layer of upper in the form of a Gore-Tex membrane. 

New Balance Summit KOM GTX protects the toes 

Aside from additional foot coverage, the Gore-Tex serves as a waterproofing detail to keep water and other wet substances from getting to the foot.

New Balance Summit KOM GTX protects the toes 

A Toe Protect forefoot guard is placed at the tip of the shoe. As the name implies, this detail protects the toes from injuries that may result during running on the trails.

Facts / Specs

Terrain: Trail
Weight: Men 8.6oz
Drop: Men 8mm
Arch support: Neutral
Base model: New Balance Summit KOM
Forefoot height: Men 16mm
Heel height: Men 24mm

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Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen

Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.