Salomon XR Mission Review
Everybody has a different, predetermined idea of what a running shoe should feel like, and from the first time that you slide a pair of Salomon XR Mission running shoes on your feet, you realize what a running shoe should feel like. When I say that the fit is unique, I really do mean it. I have never put a shoe on my foot that felt like this. It is comfortable, but only as a running shoe, not as a street shoe like the majority of running shoes. What I mean by this is that the XR Mission has a very aggressive fit, that is really only going to be comfortable when running, rather than just standing around. When you pull the laces tight, the sides of the shoe grab the sides of your feet tightly, while the forefoot and toe box is very large. The tight midfoot secures your foot in place, while the wide forefoot allows for your foot to expand with each step without rubbing against the sides of the shoe, which could cause discomfort over longer running sessions. The heel also does a great job of securing your foot in place, as it uses a thicker, firmer padding that keeps your locked in place. The Quicklace system is probably one of the most unique elements of this shoe and is exclusive only to Salomon running shoes. It is the very first thing that you notice when you look at a pair of Salomons, and I am happy to say that it really works well. How it works is you pull the laces tight from the Quickfit locking system, and it acts as a pull-tie, allowing you to lace up your shoes very quickly without tying them. The system works well, but I did find that if I wanted the best fit possible, I did have to play around with it a little, so it wasn’t exactly a one pull lace up. That being said, it is not a problem at all, because the system itself works great. You can tie your shoes up faster, and once you get them how you want them, the laces are locked in place, and will stay locked in place until you change it. You never have to worry about your laces coming undone ever again, which is somewhat of a secret paranoia that I have when running, so it was great to not worry about that in the Salomons. The tongue also has a small pouch where you can tuck the excess laces as well as the locking mechanism, so there are no laces flapping around when you run.
The XR Mission weighs in at 10.5oz, which is a little below average weight for a running shoe. If you consider how solid the XR Mission is built and how many extras are on the shoe, I would have expected the shoe to weigh a little more. The XR Mission is certainly not going to weigh you down, but if you are looking for something more on the lightweight side of things, you elsewhere. But if you’re more into a supportive solid feel, the XR Mission is going to be great.
The XR Mission is intended as a trail shoe, but its mildly aggressive tread really allows it to be used on any type of surface that you would like. It is recommended as a short to middle distance runner, which I would agree with, so it may not be the best choice if you’re going to be running very long distances. The sole is on the firmer side and it also has a pretty solid amount of stiffness to it, allowing it to be a good option to be used as a cross trainer if need be. To put it simply, this is a very versatile shoe in that t can handle nearly and of surface and any type of activity that you throw at it. If you are looking for a very solid running shoe that can be used for pretty much anything, the XR Mission is going to get the job done.
Earlier when I said that the fit of the XR Mission is very aggressive, but in a good way, what I meant was that this is a shoe that makes you want to run when they are on your feet. I have never used a running shoe that felt so smooth and so responsive when running. Running felt almost effortless, and everything just works so well together when running. The sole features what Salomon calls an “over-sized tendon”, which is essentially a plastic of some kind that runs through the forefoot of the shoe, providing not only stiffness to the sole, but it also provides solid energy transfer when running. The tight midfoot and wide forefoot make for a very comfortable run, but what really struck me with the XR Mission was how smooth it felt. I felt like I was always running at a constant pace and was never losing momentum. This is seriously one of the best feeling running shoes that I have ever worn, and if you’re serious about running, I would give the XR Mission a really hard look.
I couldn’t have been more impressed with the XR Mission, and it really opened my eyes to what the standard of a high-end running shoe should be. The XR Mission offers a unique fit, an innovative lacing system, and one of the most responsive soles on the market. IF you have never tried a Salomon running shoe and are on the market for something high-end, the XR Mission is a fantastic choice that certainly will not disappoint.
Fit 10 out of 10
Weight 8 out of 10
Function/Versatility 10 out of 10
Running 10 out of 10
Final Score 38 out of 40 or 95%