Verdict from 23 experts and 55 user reviews

8 reasons to buy

  • Multiple testers attest to the comfort of the Asics MetaRacer. 
  • Quite a few runners commend the snug wrap of the running shoe. 
  • It allows for more ground control, observed several wearers. 
  • The road running shoe enhances speed, expressed a number of athletes. 
  • Some racers appreciate the breathability of the neutral running platform. 
  • Quite a few experts state that the running shoe has a superb grip.
  • Various commentators laud the springy ride delivered by the shoe. 
  • The neutral running shoe has a good lockdown, admired many analysts.

4 reasons not to buy

  • One of the commenters claims that the running shoe is quite bulky. 
  • According to a number of marathoners, the shoe has insufficient cushioning. 
  • Some critics are skeptical about the road running platform's durability. 
  • A few running competitors declare that the hole in the toe cap makes the foot cold during winter runs.

Bottom line

Touted as the most advanced Asics running shoe to date, the Asics MetaRacer is built for runners wanting to up their pace. With this carbon-plated neutral running shoe, athletes are geared with maximum spring, propulsion, and security. Sporting a very minimalist design, the road running shoe does not compromise when it comes to grip and comfort. Because of its simple yet effective design, wearers are able to have better ground feel and control.

Tip: see the best running shoes.

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Good to know

After going through 80 rounds of refinements and prototyping, Asics has finally come up with its first carbon-plated running shoe—the MetaRacer. To start, what sets it apart from the rest of the brand's road running shoes is, of course, its incorporation of the carbon fiber plate. This component is what powers heightened speed, making the Asics MetaRacer a perfect companion for long-distance races. 

Sporting one Asics' famous FlyteFoam® midsole technology, the neutral running platform delivers plush, responsive cushioning to the foot. Alongside the FlyteFoam® midsole is the Guidesole™ technology which offers foot protection, especially during the impact on landing.

Propulsion is amplified by the traction of the racing shoe. Given this, Asics designed the MetaRacer to have as much grip as possible. To do so, the company implemented the ASICS Grip sole. Complementing this high-strength rubber compound is the Wet Grip® outsole. As the name suggests, it augments the ground adherence of the shoe on wet surfaces.

Another component that makes the running shoe exceptional is its unique toe cap fashion. The toe cap has a hole that increases airflow within the platform.

The Asics MetaRacer is configured using the standard sizing measurements for both men and women. Purchasers can get a pair with their usual size choice. To secure precise fit and size, users can try on the shoe's fit first. If it is not a viable, buyers can also opt to go through online reviews first before placing an order.

Affecting the fit of the road running shoe is its engineered mesh upper. It gives a generous, breathable wrap around the foot, preventing unwanted shoe removal. Complementing the mesh upper of the shoe is the classic lace-up closure of the neutral running shoe. It provides a customizable lockdown to the foot.

The outsole of the MetaRacer offers a low-to-the-ground construction, screaming minimalism. There are two outsole innovations implemented on the running shoe—ASICS Grip and Wet Grip® sole. 

The ASICS Grip is a proprietary outsole technology from Asics that's composed of durable rubber compound. It supplies superior multi-surface traction, allowing runners to perform on varied terrains without the fear of slippage.

Meanwhile, the Wet Grip® outsole's composition is a blend of both organic and non-organic components. Apparent through its name, this outsole feature heightens the stickiness of the lightweight running shoe, regardless of dampness on the ground. It gives wearers a stable running performance. 

Even with all of these technologies incorporated into the long-distance running shoe, the Asics MetaRacer maintains an ultra-light fashion.

Exhibiting Asics' premier midsole components, the MetaRacer features both FlyteFoam® midsole and Guidesole™ technology. Together, these midsole innovations encourage plushness and rebound.

To be more specific, FlyteFoam® employs organic super fibers. With these, the foam does not pack out, unlike most traditional EVA midsole foams. Instead, the FlyteFoam® pronounces the comfort and bounce delivered by the running shoe. Because it has a lower durometer, the FlyteFoam® midsole permits a super soft, springy feel.

Supplementing the FlyteFoam® is the Guidesole™ technology. It presents a curved sole shape and rigid forefoot design. With such configuration, the midsole feature enables reduced ankle flexion and improved shock absorption. Overall, the Guidesole™ increases the athlete's efficiency and prevents the onset of strain on the foot and leg muscles.

Making the MetaRacer even more outstanding, meanwhile, is its carbon fiber plate. The general goal of the plate is to increase the acceleration of the runner. It is engineered into the curved sole of the neutral running shoe, thus providing structure. Unlike other carbon-plated running shoe models in the market, the Asics MetaRacer has a much lower stack height, allowing more ground control and sensation.

Just like the Nike Zoom Pegasus Turbo 2, the MetaRacer from Asics is geared with an engineered mesh upper. It is made of a multi-directional textile that gives the wearer a wider range of foot motions without compromising lockdown. Because of its perforations, the engineered mesh upper promotes a healthy foot environment by increasing air circulation within the foot chamber.

To further the cool sensation of the running shoe, the toe cap also exhibits a hole. This lets in the air into the shoe for a more breathable wrap. 

Lastly, a classic lacing system gives the shoe a dialed-in, accurate fit.

How MetaRacer compares

This shoe: 89
All shoes average: 81
54 93
This shoe: £190
All shoes average: £120
£40 £330
This shoe: 190g
All shoes average: 270g
100g 437g
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.