Our verdict

90
Superb!
The PUMA Deviate Nitro is back with a significant update that makes an already great shoe even better. It’s really comfortable, which is not always the case for carbon-plated shoes, and it’s extremely versatile. As a result, we have a real do-it-all companion to take on the road for every run, not to mention the quality-price ratio, which basically makes it a no-brainer.

Pros

  • Great all-rounder
  • Super-smooth and responsive ride
  • Plush cushioning
  • Comfy upper
  • Grippy outsole
  • Above average durability
  • Fairly priced

Cons

  • Heavier than other similar shoes
  • Not many colours available

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Who should buy PUMA Deviate Nitro 2

This shoe can be perfect for you whether you are a beginner or an expert, do easy runs or prepare for races, and are looking for something that doesn’t compromise on comfort, traction, and durability. If, in addition to this, you’re a “one-shoe runner,” then this is one of the best choices you can get.

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Who should not buy it

Don’t get it if you:

PUMA Deviate Nitro 2 vs. Nitro 1

There have been a few important changes from the previous version. The Nitro 2 has an updated, more comfortable upper, and a softer midsole, which we believe is a vast improvement.

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Top-quality upper

The shoe's upper looks premium and feels comfortable.

Based on our smoke test results, it is also a breathable shoe. On a 1-5 scale where 5 is the most breathable, we rated it as 4.

Puma Deviate Nitro 2 (left): as you can see, the smoke comes out easily from the shoe; Adidas Runfalcon (right): the smoke coming out is not much and only from the tongue area.

We also checked how transparent the upper material is. As you can see, it is extremely well-perforated with plenty of light shining through the fabric.

Meanwhile, the shoe's upper also sees plenty of padding, especially around the heel collar, which appears to be both more comfortable and more durable than the original. Blisters are not familiar with this shoe!

We also found that the heel counter is not stiff at all. It scored 2 out of 5, where 1 is the most flexible.

Ride is great in the PUMA Deviate Nitro 2

We found that the shoe's carbon plate feels less aggressive compared to other plated running shoes. The latter can be on the one hand more exciting, but on the other hand, they are not as comfortable as this shoe is.

But that doesn't minimise the fact that the Deviate Nitro 2 is still very responsive and provides a nice spring-off. Overall, the shoe provides a smooth and buttery ride.

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Disclaimer: We take an average of 4 measurements and exclude any outliers. This image shows just one of our measurements.

We used a durometer to test the midsole at the heel and found out that it is 50% softer than the average. Even after 20 minutes in the freezer (to simulate cold weather conditions) the foam remained 15.6% softer than most running shoes.

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According to our test, the Nitro 2 is 19% softer than the previous version, confirming what runners said.

Traction is just amazing

One of the best parts of this PUMA running shoe is the outsole, which is excellent in any condition, even on some easy trails. The PUMAGRIP has once again stood up to its reputation.

The shoe uses PUMAGRIP ATR for the outsole meaning that this rubber can handle multiple types of terrain. We found this to be true be it on wet roads, fallen leaves, and light trails.

What's more, we found it to be a very well-crafted and durable outsole.

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Measured with a calliper, the outsole turned out to be 3.7 mm, just slightly thicker than the average (3.5 mm). 

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Cushioned, but not too tall

The Deviate Nitro 2 has a forefoot stack height of 26.1 mm, and a heel stack height of 31.7 mm. The average stack has been increasing in recent years and sits now around 33.5 mm, with many shoes going as high as 40 mm and even more than that.

That way, the Deviate Nitro 2 has an average amount of cushioning for a road running shoe. 

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Disclaimer: Our stack measurements are always taken with the insole included.

Looking at the difference in stack heights, we have a drop of 5.6 mm, just a bit lower than the 6 mm officially stated by the brand. Drops from 5 to 8 mm can be considered mid-range. 

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When we measured the insole, the calliper reported a figure of 4.4. mm, same as the average.

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One shoe for every day out 

The Deviate Nitro 2 must be one of the most versatile running shoes we've tested this year (2022)! It’s amazing on easy days, uptempo work, and long runs too. It's a well-rounded workhorse!

Deviate Nitro 2 hugs the foot perfectly

The shoe offers an excellent spot-on fit and we experienced no issues in this department.

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In its widest part, we measured the toebox at 96.3 mm which is considered medium width. At the big toe (see photo below), we also found that the Deviate Nitro 2 falls into the average width at 75 mm.

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Look elsewhere if you need a flexible shoe

Because of the carbon plate, it is quite expected that this PUMA shoe would be on the stiffer end of shoes. Measuring its resistance with a force gauge, it took 50% more force than average to bend the shoe to a 90-degree angle.

But compared to other plated road shoes, the Deviate Nitro 2 turns out to be 7% more flexible. 

In the test you can see below, we subjectively measured longitudinal and torsional flexibility. The first scored 4 (very rigid), while the latter scored 3 (moderately stiff).

Weight: not there yet

With a weight of 9.1 oz (257g), this shoe is not as light as other competitors in the same category (average weight: 8 oz/227g). We could definitely feel the extra ounce when picking up the pace or when attempting a longer run.

PUMA Deviate Nitro 2 is stable

For a shoe of its kind, wobbliness is rather common. But we experienced no problems in this department! During our tests, the Deviate Nitro 2 remained stable at both fast and slow paces.

The width of the sole can affect stability. In this case, the shoe has a width of 92.3 mm at the heel, which is wider than the average by 2 mm. This might have contributed to the overall stable feel.

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Not afraid of the dark

The Deviate Nitro 2 sports two different reflective elements: one at the forefoot and another one, very large, positioned at the heel. This makes the shoe visible at night.

Does not cost you a fortune

Plated running shoes are usually very expensive, but it’s not the case with the Deviate Nitro 2, which is sold at a reasonable £170. Considering what it offers, that’s a great price point.

The average price of shoes in this category is £220.

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