Our verdict

The ASICS Noosa Tri 15 keeps its crazy, head-turning design while adding much-wanted features like enhanced FF Blast cushioning and a stable ride that we really enjoyed. Retaining the best elements of its predecessor, it naturally evolves as a versatile speedster without tacking on extra weight. Priced at £130, we consider it stands as a solid choice for both training and racing, though the absence of a carbon plate and a narrow heel might be drawbacks for some runners and triathletes.

Pros

  • Extremely lightweight
  • Well-cushioned for long runs
  • Works well across various paces
  • Specifically designed for triathlons
  • Unique design
  • Breathable and comfortable upper
  • Long-lasting outsole
  • Suitable for sock-free running
  • Excellent value at $130

Cons

  • Limited energy return
  • Tongue might be too thin for some
  • Not the best for heel strikers

Audience verdict

88
Great!

Who should buy

We think the ASICS Noosa Tri 15 is a top choice for:

  • Runners looking for a lightweight, non-plated option for both fast-paced training and racing.
  • Triathletes who need a shoe that can handle sock-free runs, track workouts, and interval training.
  • Anyone seeking a running shoe with a unique design and impressive versatility for various running speeds.

Asics Noosa Tri 15

Who should NOT buy

If you're after world-class performance, we believe this shoe is not for you. Though it's speedy, it lacks a carbon plate and PEBA foam, limiting its energy return. Consider the ASICS Metaspeed Edge+ or the Nike Streakfly instead.

Runners who use a heel-striking technique should also think twice about the Noosa Tri 15. Its rearfoot is notably narrow, so we suggest opting for wider-heeled alternatives like the PUMA Deviate Nitro 2 or the Saucony Endorphin Speed 3.

Asics Noosa Tri 15

Breathability

The ASICS Noosa Tri line was originally designed for triathlon races, so it's gotta be breathable. Many triathletes like to race sock-free, after all!

We put the shoe through our cutting-edge breathability test, and let's just say our smoke machine and this shoe's upper are a perfect match. We gave the ventilation a 5/5 rating.

We also used our light to see how well the shoe breathes. In the toebox, we found excellent airflow, thanks to a combo of thin engineered mesh and ventilation holes. The midfoot is a bit more solid and thicker, so it's less breezy there.

To get a closer look at the toebox ventilation, we turned on our microscope.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 microscope

The holes here are top-notch, designed to keep air flowing while you run. Beneath these holes, another mesh layer adds rigidity to the upper, ensuring it stays in shape.

Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 5
Average 3.8
Compared to 234 running shoes
Number of shoes
1
Breathability
5

Durability

Toebox durability

We expected the Noosa Tri 15 to not hold up well in the durability test because of its super-thin mesh.

Sure enough, our Dremel test gave us disappointing results. It scored a 1 out of 5!

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Toebox durability
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 1
Average 2.4
Compared to 168 running shoes
Number of shoes
1
Toebox durability
5

Heel padding durability

However, ASICS really wowed us by making an incredibly durable heel counter. In our second Dremel test, the shoe showed off an impressive performance by acing this challenge with a perfect 5 out of 5 score.

Now, there's a catch. Shoes designed for speed training and racing often score well in this test because they have less padding than daily training shoes. But even with that in mind, we still think it's a standout performance.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Heel padding durability
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 5
Average 3.2
Compared to 164 running shoes
Number of shoes
1
Heel padding durability
5

Outsole hardness

We flipped the shoe over to examine the outsole, really curious to see if the Noosa Tri 15 could be more than just a racing shoe—a solid training partner.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 outsole

The outsole design takes its inspiration from the ASICS Metaspeed Sky+.

In our initial test in the lab, we gauged the outsole hardness at 83.9 HC, which is actually higher than average!

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Outsole hardness
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 83.9 HC
Average 80.5 HC
We use an average of four tests. The photo shows one of those tests.
Compared to 285 running shoes
Number of shoes
52.1 HC
Outsole hardness
93.0 HC

Outsole durability

ASICS really knocked it out of the park in terms of grip and durability for this shoe. They stepped it up by using their advanced AHARPLUS rubber instead of the standard AHAR. This upgraded material is usually reserved for their high-end models, like the ASICS Superblast.

In our final Dremel test, we were amazed one more time. The rubber showed only a tiny 0.6 mm indentation. For this type of shoe, that result is nothing short of incredible.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Outsole durability
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 0.6 mm
Average 0.9 mm
Compared to 146 running shoes
Number of shoes
0.0 mm
Outsole wear
2.0 mm

Outsole thickness

Last but not least, we were eager to find out the outsole thickness. All the earlier tests wouldn't mean much if the rubber was paper-thin, right?

Luckily, we measured a substantial 2.8 mm thickness. This promises that the shoe is built to last, easily covering hundreds of miles with barely any wear and tear.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Outsole thickness
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 2.8 mm
Average 3.2 mm
Compared to 304 running shoes
Number of shoes
0.0 mm
Outsole thickness
6.6 mm

Weight

Weighing in at just 7.7 oz or 218g, we find the Noosa Tri 15 remarkably light, especially given its focus on both comfort and durability in key areas like the outsole.

For instance, it tips the scale at exactly the same weight as the Adidas Adios Pro 3, one of the best marathon racers in the market.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Weight
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 7.69 oz (218g)
Average 9.38 oz (266g)
Compared to 305 running shoes
Number of shoes
5.26 oz (149g)
Weight
12.56 oz (356g)

Cushioning

The tongue is semi-gusseted, an essential feature in a triathlon-focused shoe that helps prevent any unwanted movement.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 tongue tab

ASICS has also cleverly included a tongue tab, not just to make putting the shoe on quicker and easier, but also to improve transitions from bike to run.

Heel stack

One of the main gripes from past users of the Noosa line was that the shoe could have more cushioning for long-distance races. Addressing this concern, ASICS has impressively bumped up the heel stack from 30.2 mm in the Noosa Tri 14 to a plush 34.6 mm in the Noosa Tri 15.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 heel stack

What's even more astounding is that the v15 weighs just 0.2 oz (5g) more than its predecessor. This is a significant improvement that makes the Noosa Tri 15 an great choice for long runs, as it delivers more cushion than ever without any significant weight increase.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Heel stack
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 34.6 mm
Average 33.7 mm
Compared to 304 running shoes
Number of shoes
7.6 mm
Heel stack
45.7 mm

Forefoot stack

In our measurements, the forefoot thickness has also increased from the previous version. It's now at 26.9 mm, up from 22.2 mm.

That's a notable 4.7-mm jump that will surely be loved by forefoot strikers. While making this change, we found in our test runs that some of the classic ground feel unique to the Noosa Tri is reduced, but not completely gone.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Forefoot stack
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 26.9 mm
Average 25.0 mm
Compared to 304 running shoes
Number of shoes
7.6 mm
Forefoot stack
36.9 mm

Drop

ASICS advertises the Noosa Tri 15 as having a 5-mm heel-to-toe drop. However, our in-depth measurements tell a different story—we clocked the difference between the heel and the forefoot at 7.7 mm.

If you're curious about why there's such a gap, we offer a full guide on this topic, explaining that we follow the official World Athletics rules.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Drop
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 7.7 mm
Average 8.7 mm
Compared to 304 running shoes
Number of shoes
-0.8 mm
Drop
16.1 mm

Insole thickness

The insole thickness really stands out at 5.3 mm, which is notably higher than average, especially for a shoe focused on speed. This clearly shows that ASICS is committed to maintaining comfort.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Insole thickness
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 5.3 mm
Average 4.5 mm
Compared to 300 running shoes
Number of shoes
1.5 mm
Insole thickness
7.3 mm

Midsole softness

Note: a low durometer measurement equals a soft material, whereas a high measurement means it's firm.

One signature feature of the Noosa Tri has always been its cloud-like feel. While this was a comfort-plus for some, it bothered racers who found it too soft and mushy. To address this, the Tri 15 now has a firmer feel, measuring at 18.6 HA. Yet, it still offers a comfy ride.

The midsole is entirely composed of FlyteFoam Blast (EVA+OBC). While this isn't ASICS' premium foam, it's pretty good for a shoe priced at just £130.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Midsole softness
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 18.6 HA
Average 21.4 HA
We use an average of four tests. The photo shows one of those tests.
Compared to 232 running shoes
Number of shoes
8.5 HA
Midsole softness (soft to firm)
41.5 HA

Difference in midsole softness in cold

Even though triathlons typically aren't held in cold weather, we're aware that this shoe gets used year-round for training and racing purposes. So we decided to see how it fares in chilly conditions. 

We placed the shoe in the freezer, right beside our favourite ice creams, for 20 minutes. After taking it out, we tested its softness with the durometer once more. The reading came out to be 22.5 HA, which is nearly identical to its initial measurement. This suggests the shoe maintains its properties well, even in the cold.

The 21% increase in firmness does not exceed what you'd find in an average shoe.

Although FlyteFoam Blast hasn't historically been the best foam for cold-weather performance, it's evident to us that ASICS is making strides to improve its formula, as indicated by these results.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Midsole softness in cold
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 21%
Average 25.5%
Compared to 231 running shoes
Number of shoes
0%
Difference in midsole softness in cold
100%

Stability

Lateral stability test

The Tri 15 felt stable to us, even though it's a completely neutral shoe. How did ASICS achieve this?

Asics Noosa Tri 15 sidewalls

Partially, by incorporating distinct sidewalls that extend through the midfoot. This design allows your feet to sink into the Tri, almost like sitting in a bathtub, serving as a smart technique to enhance stability in a neutral shoe like this one.

Torsional rigidity

Another effective way to enhance stability in a neutral shoe is by making it stiff. In fact, this is one of the stiffest non-plated shoes we've ever tested in the lab.

Scoring a 5/5 in this category without the aid of a plate is incredibly rare.

Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 5
Average 3.2
Compared to 283 running shoes
Number of shoes
1
Torsional rigidity
5

Heel counter stiffness

The heel counter takes a different route, and we gave it a 3/5. This is a proven strategy that aligns with what most brands on the market are doing.

Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 3
Average 2.8
Compared to 267 running shoes
Number of shoes
1
Heel counter stiffness
5

Midsole width in the forefoot

Now we're turning our attention to sizing up the midsole dimensions.

In the forefoot, we measured a maximum width of 114.6 mm. This generous width offers plenty of stability and ensures secure landings, even when you're running at top speeds or doing track workouts.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Midsole width in the forefoot
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 114.6 mm
Average 113.7 mm
Compared to 305 running shoes
Number of shoes
100.5 mm
Midsole width in the forefoot
126.5 mm

Midsole width in the heel

The heel design is not meant for heel strikers. We measured the width and found it to be quite narrow at 82.9 mm.

However, keep in mind that this shoe is designed for fast-paced racing and training, targeting midfoot and forefoot strikers. We also observed some design features aimed at reducing weight, so the focus on speed makes sense.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Midsole width in the heel
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 82.9 mm
Average 90.5 mm
Compared to 305 running shoes
Number of shoes
74.9 mm
Midsole width in the heel
106.6 mm

Flexibility

Stiffness

We anticipated the test result would be low because the shoe doesn't have a carbon plate.

In the lab, we only needed to apply 20.8N of force to bend the shoe to 90 degrees. This is one of the lowest scores we've ever recorded for a fast shoe and that's why it's so comfortable during easy runs.

Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 20.8N
Average 29.2N
We use an average of four tests. The video shows one of those tests.
Compared to 287 running shoes
Number of shoes
2.2N
Stiffness
94.4N

Difference in stiffness in cold

Just like we did for testing midsole softness, we put the shoe in the freezer to simulate cold conditions and ran the test again. This time, we gauged that the shoe required slightly more effort, needing 26.3N of force.

This is only a 26.4% increase, which easily outshines most other shoes on the market. We're impressed to see again that ASICS has really stepped up their game by enhancing the FlyteFoam Blast formula in this latest 15th edition of the Noosa Tri.

Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 26.4%
Average 35.9%
Compared to 287 running shoes
Number of shoes
0%
Difference in stiffness in cold
148%

Size and fit

Toebox width at the widest part

Moving to the toebox, we discovered a pretty accomodating upper, which makes this shoe a nice choice for those who want a light, fast shoe but have slightly wider feet than the norm.

While it cannot be considered a wide shoe per se, it's among the widest and comfiest racing shoes in the market.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Toebox width at the widest part
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 98.8 mm
Average 98.4 mm
Compared to 305 running shoes
Number of shoes
89.5 mm
Toebox width at the widest part
109.1 mm

Toebox width at the big toe

In the area around the big toe (77.9 mm), we observed a pretty standard design. The Noosa Tri 15 follows a regular width and unfortunately, there's no optional 2E size. 

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Toebox width at the big toe
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 77.9 mm
Average 78.2 mm
Compared to 179 running shoes
Number of shoes
60.4 mm
Toebox width at the big toe
92.5 mm

Tongue: gusset type

The tongue is semi-gusseted, an essential feature in a triathlon-focused shoe that helps prevent any unwanted movement.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 tongue tab

ASICS has also cleverly included a tongue tab, not just to make putting the shoe on quicker and easier, but also to improve transitions from bike to run.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Tongue: gusset type
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 Both sides (semi)

Comfort

Tongue padding

The tongue of the shoe is super-thin at just 1.1 mm, focusing on weight-reduction like a Formula 1 car.

Although it has minimal padding, we find it comfy enough for races and high-speed training, so we're good with this design.

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Tongue padding
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 1.1 mm
Average 5.6 mm
Compared to 302 running shoes
Number of shoes
0.5 mm
Tongue padding
14.2 mm

Heel tab

ASICS decided not to include a heel tab in the Noosa Tri 15. So if you're trying to slide your foot into the shoe, you'll still probably need to use your finger to help.

Maybe they'll think about adding it next year!

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Heel tab
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 None

Removable insole

We know that some triathletes like to switch out the default insole. Good news, is not glued, so you can easily make that change too!

Asics Noosa Tri 15 Removable insole
Test results
Asics Noosa Tri 15 Yes