Merrell Nova GTX
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82% say it's true to size.
Overview of this review
Updates to Merrell Nova GTX
- The Merrell Nova running shoe model presents an alternative variant in the form of the Merrell Nova GTX. As its name implies, this shoe takes the features and functions of the original version and takes it up a notch with the Gore-Tex membrane as an added benefit. The shoe is built for neutral pronators who frequent moderate trails.
- The most noteworthy feature of this shoe is the waterproof coverage of the upper. A variant of Gore-Tex called the InvisibleFit protects the shoe and foot from the elements while delivering the feel of a “naked” shoe. It is paired with an abrasion-resistant upper that easily withstands the rigors of trail running.
- The Nova GTX’s sole unit is comprised of a shock-absorbent foam that cushions for comfort through the miles.
Size and fit
The Merrell Nova GTX is constructed following the standard running shoe measurements, though this does not guarantee a true-to-size fit. It is best to try the shoe in-store to get an accurate sizing.
Because the shoe is designed for neutral pronators, its fit specifications are intended for feet high arches. These specs include the semi-curved silhouette that accommodates normal (neutral) foot biomechanics; and the compression-molded midsole that focuses more on platform and ride and less on stability.
Meanwhile, a secure fit is ensured by the traditional lacing system and the heel counter elements of the upper.
Vibram TC5+ is a rubber compound that is specifically used for trail running. It is paired with 5-mm adaptive lugs that effectively maintain grip and stability. In the Nova GTX, the durability of the TC5+ compound allows it to withstand rugged terrains, as it equips the shoe with traction and power.
A unit of compressed ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) foam acts as the midsole of the Merrell Nova GTX. The material provides stability and comfort. The compression molding technique employed lends the EVA foam lightweight and comfortable qualities. It also works in shock absorption and responsiveness for a smooth, consistent ride.
The forefoot and heel areas have cushioning pods, which also serve as protective elements, being located in the high-wear areas.
An added layer of EVA serves as a removable insole of the shoe. With this extra cushioning, the runner is encouraged to log more miles.
TrailProtect is a rock plate unit that shields the foot from debris that could cause harm. It also uniformly distributes pressure across the foot. This feature is also present in the Trail Glove 5, another running shoe from Merrell.
The main upper component of the Merrell Nova GTX is a combination of abrasion-resistant textile and thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), which aims to withstand the demands of the trail. The textile fabric keeps the foot well-ventilated, while the TPU reinforcements enforce structural integrity.
The internal lining of the shoe is a breathable mesh lining that is not only airy but also soft against the skin to counter irritations.
The M Select Fresh is an antimicrobial agent that keeps the foot fresh, dry, and odor-free. It prevents sweat and moisture from building up inside the shoe. The M Select Fresh is infused into the shoe lining of the Merrell Nova GTX.
Gore-Tex Invisible Fit efficiently blocks moisture to keep the foot dry and comfortable during the run. It has a lightweight quality that gives the feeling that it isn’t there.
Other noteworthy details of the upper include a classic lace-up closure system, which allows an adjustable fit, and a Hyperlock™ TPU heel counter that gives a locked-down feel.