Wow! Pearl Izumi has definitely made a debut with their E:Motion line of shoes. They have three trail shoe versions – N1, N2, and M2. The N1 debuted last year with Tim Olsen’s Western States win (not sure what happened since North Face is his sponsor now). The N2 is slightly more cushioned than the N1 and still a neutral shoe. Those looking for more stability will want to try the M2. Let’s take a look at the N2 Trail Shoe.
Pearl Izumi N2 fit true to size. This is significant to note since their Peak II had a narrower toe box, and you needed to size up either a half a size or full size. The N2 comes in around 10 oz. PI states a “dynamic” offset from 4 mm at initial contact to 7.5 mm at mid-stance. I’ve also looked at other websites to try to find the “static” offset – heel (27mm) and midfoot (17mm) at 10mm offset.
PI moved back the toe spring to give the E:motion line a smoother transition/ride. It is a similar rocking-type technology in the Hoka’s.
PI kept the upper “seamless”. Well, virtually seamless. It feels really nice on the feet. They have a non-gusseted tongue – not sure why PI would not gusset the tongue of a trail shoe.
You will notice the “sausage-link” type lacing. This will keep the laces from loosening all at one time. The gaps interlock with each other providing a longer tie-down.
Out of the box 20 miler, it performed very nicely. The N2 are very comfortable at all distances. I had no issues with blisters or any discomfort. There is plenty of protection underneath and great traction on the ups and downs. They performed well in wet conditions and are very well ventilated. The N2’s are a great everyday trainer and for any distances.
- Weight – 10.25 oz (291 g)
- Dynamic Offset: 4mm to 7.5 mm (more like 6mm)
- Non-gusseted tongue
- Neutral Shoe
- Rock Plate
- Midsole – EVA
- Upper – Synthetic
- Made In – China
- Women’ Version
The Pearl Izumi N2 is a great cushioned neutral shoe with a dynamic offset in a package around 10 oz. The N2 is a great addition to the E:Motion line. However, I would add a gusseted tongue in the next version.
One constructive feedback to PI would be to have better information regarding their E:Motion line on their website, that is, a better comparison of the differences between the three models and the actual “static” offset.