Shoe Review: Hoka One One Torrent
Hoka One One is always iterating on their lineup, but the Torrent adds something even newer… a performance trail race shoe. The Torrent is one of their lightest trail shoes ever and is designed to be a balance of performance, protection, and cushioning. We set out to see if they truly nailed it and from what we can tell, it’s a really solid platform albeit with a few quirks.
The upper on the Torrent features an engineered mesh which helps with breathability, but it also has a protective overlays that come up from the mid which help with protection and durability. They are designed to be quick drying, but these are not something you are going to be wearing in heavy duty rain because while they dry over time it definitely takes a few. In run, they will still be remarkably wet. The upper material also appears to stain a bit as well so the lighter color options in the lineup may not be your best choice. The upper is comfortable and does allow for some freedom of movement, but the toe-box skews a little more narrow.
The mid on the Hoka Torrent is designed for both responsiveness and protection of the foot. It’s still a Hoka though so expect big oversized EVA, in fact 24mm in the heel, but the Torrent definitely feels faster than other Hoka trail shoes. The midsole makes it feel like a race shoe, it is nimble yet cushioned and gives you a very quick toe off.
The outsole on the Torrent features decently aggressive multi-directional lugs that track incredibly and grip nicely across varied terrains. The high traction rubber is durable and lasts better than other Hoka models from what we can tell, but the real thing here is the handling.
Style & Aesthetics
The Hoka One One Torrent comes in four colors for men and women. As mentioned above, the lighter colors do wear quite a bit and will start to stain, but the overall styling is a nice balance of aggressive and simplistic.
The first big call out on these will definitely their narrow toebox. It isn’t big and wide like the Speedgoats, Cliftons, etc, but that is not what these are designed for, so in with that. They do feel good on the foot, not super cushy but instead nice and stable with a very apparent rocker. They are very light feeling for a trail shoe and their nimbleness is evident very quickly. In most cases, I found myself having to back off them a bit because I wanted to move too quickly, my cadence was too fast. This made for super fun runs over time as I figured out how they fit into my routine. Faster trail days became more exciting than before and I felt myself randomly jumping off things and actually playing a bit more in run.
Now at distance things will shift a little, the responsiveness will wear on your legs, you will want a little more cushion out of the Torrent, and you will be lacking. I realize now that if I want to work these into my lineup they would find a spot in the performance category and I would adjust accordingly. So as long as you have a spot for them in repertoire, then really going to be a solid option.Overall
The Hoka One One Torrent is really their best trail racer for shorter distances. You won’t wear these for an ultra unless you are a professional, but for 30k and lower they will do just fine and for super short quick trail racing they will really deliver. Our only callouts are really the narrowing of the toebox and the slight discoloration you might experience in the upper. Other than that the shoe grips really well, is incredibly responsive, and can really be dialed up for race duty. The Torrent is a fun shoe to say the least, the trails start to feel more like a playground with these.
Technical Stats, Pricing & Availability
- Weight: 9oz (size 9)
- Drop: 5mm heel/toe
- Type: Neutral Trail (Responsive)
- Stack Height: 19/24mm (heel/toe)
- MSRP: $120.00
- Available: Now