The Saucony Kinvara 14 has been MASSIVELY UPDATED. If we are being honest, it needed it. Before the carbon plate boom, the Kinvara was one of the most popular marathon racing shoes just a few years ago. Since plates have become a thing, the Kinvara has fallen back. I’ve wondered each year: is this the last year of the Kinvara? But the Saucony Kinvara 14 proves it’s not. At least, I hope not!
Saucony Kinvara 14 Quick Facts:
Weight: 6.2 oz
Heel to Toe Drop: 4 mm
Saucony Kinvara 14 Intro:
As mentioned, the Saucony Kinvara 14 has been given a big update. It’s lighter but with more cushion. The new upper provides a different fit, but it still fits well. The new 31 mm/37 mm and PWRRUN+ insole make the Kinvara 14 flexible and light. For fans of the Kinvara, the shoe will feel different. Not in a bad way; it’s just different.
Saucony Kinvara 14 Fit:
The Kinvara 14 upper is more snug than usual and wraps around the foot. The upper is comprised of two layers of mesh which actually keep the gusseted tongue down too. It’s weird, it almost feels like too much material, but the Kinvara breathes well. It’s already getting hot in the Mojave Desert, so I am glad to have breathable shoes.
The heel counter is unique because it only partially comes up on the heel. There is plenty of padding, and I haven’t had any issues with rubbing. There are a few overlays that come over the ball of the foot. They haven’t caused any issues but provide some structure to the shoe.
Saucony is a brand in which most models fit slightly differently, and the same shoes might fit differently depending on the year. This year, the Saucony Kinvara 14 fits somewhat narrow. It’s not narrow enough to say go bigger but it will hug your foot more than previous versions. Usually, I wear between size 10-11 wide in running shoes, and I’ve found size 11 to fit the best.
Saucony Kinvara 14 Ride:
The update to the Saucony Kinvara’s ride is where the shoe shines. It’s become a light but high-stack height trainer with no carbon plate (although I’ve heard rumors there is a carbon-plated version coming). The additional stack height makes a noticeable difference with more cushion under your foot. The old Kinvara used to be a racing shoe; you didn’t want to run too many training runs in it because there wasn’t much to it.
These days, the Saucony Kinvara 14 can handle training or racing, and it’s a great option if you’re looking for a racer without a carbon plate. Even with the increase in the cushion, the Kinvara is still very flexible. It’s not as flexible as previous versions, but it’s much more so than expected.
Durability and Traction: The outsole of the Saucony Kinvara 14 is exposed midsole. I know why brands do it (to save weight), but it’s still frustrating because it means it’s not as durable. It’s not a shoe you want to take in inclement weather because you’ll be sliding around. I anticipate the Saucony Kinvara 14 will probably last about 200 miles. Hopefully Saucony adds more rubber to the next versions of the Kinvara.
I wasn’t sure where to add this section, but the shoe is drastically different. I almost wish Saucony had given this shoe a different name because if you liked previous versions of the Kinvara this version might feel weird or different. Talking to others, I’ve heard a lot of mixed reviews. I like the shoe but it’s a night-and-day change from the last few versions.
I wasn’t sure where the Saucony Kinvara 14 would fit into my rotation. Workout shoe? Easy run shoe? Daily trainer? I’ve taken it through several types of workouts and runs, including easy runs, longer runs, faster intervals, and I’ve found it best fits in as an uptempo or long run shoe. I like how lightweight it is and that it provides plenty of flexibility. For easy runs, I prefer something with more cushion (like the Saucony Triumph 20).
Saucony Kinvara 14 Conclusion:
The Saucony Kinvara 14 is a significant update, and it’s brought the Kinvara into the modern running world. Hopefully, they can do some tweaks to get a lighter and more minimal upper.
Who should buy the Saucony Kinvara 14? If you are looking for a faster shoe that is lightweight and doesn’t have a carbon plate. If you are someone who misses the simplicity of running shoes, this is a model that continues to stay true to its roots.
Who should not buy the Saucony Kinvara 14? If you are looking for a durable daily trainer, this likely isn’t the shoe for you. You’ll probably get about 200 miles out of it, but it won’t last as a more substantial shoe would.
My Current Shoe Rotation:
Long Runs: ASICS Superblast
You Can See All Current Shoe Reviews Here.
Looking to learn more about running shoes? In my ebook, I talk about why you need a good running shoe, a shoe’s anatomy, neutral vs. stable, and even myths of running shoes.
Questions for you:
What was your first running shoe?
Have you tried the Saucony Kinvara 14?