Our verdict

The iconic Salomon Speedcross 4 is tough with aggressive tooth-like treads that helped me tackle rocky trails and muddy terrain. Due to their extraordinary traction, these durable shoes are a mainstay for trail running and remain a favourite amongst obstacle course racers worldwide. The Salomon Speedcross 4 certainly had my back.

Pros

  • Phenomenal traction
  • Durable
  • Protective upper
  • Great for rugged terrain
  • Snug fit
  • Nice aesthetics

Cons

  • Long break-in period
  • Poor ventilation
  • Heavy

Audience verdict

89
Great!

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First impressions of the Salomon Speedcross 4

Right out of the box, I loved the aesthetics of the Speedcross 4 as I was elated to find that the shoes came in neutral blue hues, especially for those who prefer low-key colour schemes. Furthermore, Salomon offers a variety of colours to choose from to suit your personal style preferences.

Outfitted with a water-resistant textile and anti-debris mesh, this shoe is built robustly to resist rain and debris from hindering your running endeavours.

For the rugged terrain

The outsole is my favourite feature of these shoes as they are stacked with 6mm aggressive arrow-shaped lugs made of Contragrip rubber to help you tackle any rugged terrain.

I’ve ran in these shoes on trails, tight switchbacks, in the mud, in the snow, in the rain, and all over the place in these kicks and not once did I ever feel myself slipping or sliding, thanks to the exceptional traction.

I mainly used these shoes for both trail running and obstacle course racing (OCR) which means lots and lots of muddy terrain.

Moreover, I love the arrow design because they didn’t allow copious amounts of mud to cake on the bottom of the shoes, essentially allowing me to continue to grind without sacrificing grip.

After about 120 miles in these shoes, the treads were showing some wear, but still, continue to perform great and have life in them.

Protective midsole of the Speedcross 4

Sitting on a 10mm drop, the Speedcross 4 encompass a moulded EVA foam cushioning protecting your precious feet from rocky, rough trail surfaces. Without sacrificing comfort, these shoes are still quite responsive while practising your mountain goat-like trail running skills.

Sizing & comfort

I’d love to say that these shoes are comfortable right out of the box, but they required quite a lengthy break-in period for me. The shoes run true to size, but I had to put in about 30-50 miles in these shoes before I felt like they began to become somewhat comfortable.

I have neither wide, nor narrow feet, yet I developed hot spots and blisters on my toes. Sadly, it still happens from time to time depending on how long I’m running in these shoes. With that being said, I’d rate the toe box of these shoes to be more on the narrow side.

On the plus side, if you like a snug fit, the Sensifit design of the shoe hugs your foot, so you never have to worry about your foot sliding around when your running on the side of a mountain. It’s all about preference here on what you desire in a trail running shoe.

After the “break-in period” the cushioning on these shoes are great for long distances.

Special features of the Speedcross 4

The traction certainly did not disappoint as I’ve used these for both trail running and OCR and I was incredibly impressed!

No matter if I was running uphill in the mud or bombing down a slippery downhill, I didn’t have to worry if I was going to slip because of these killer treads. As mentioned previously, the ingenious design of the arrow-shaped lugs makes the Salomon Speedcross 4 a force to be reckoned with.

Equipped with a quicklace pocket, Salomon is notorious for their no-tie lacing system which is a great feature knowing that you’ll never have to worry about an untied shoe during any of your running excursions.

Improvements of the Speedcross 4

Biomechanically, these shoes are ideal for the classic heel striker. Being a midfoot striker, I did notice during long runs I had a tendency to heel strike in these shoes which I wasn’t too happy about. I was accommodating the shoe more than it was accommodating me.

In addition, perhaps if the shoe had an option for those with wider feet, it would be desirable for a larger variety of runners as the shoes err of the narrow side.

For obstacle course racing, in particular, you can always expect wet and muddy conditions. The water-resistant textile of the Salomon Speedcross 4 hinders the water shedding capability that is desirable for those looking to race OCR in these shoes.

Also, at 260g these shoes are relatively heavy, particularly for racing. Otherwise, the heavier weight could be beneficial if used as a training shoe. Futuristically, Salomon should create a race model of the Speedcross shoes that are lighter in weight and have greater ventilation and water-shedding abilities.