Flexibility of Saucony Kinvara 12 will wow you

The Kinvara is highly flexible under foot as well, measuring at just 18.3n on the force gauge to flex this shoe completely, compared to the average of 24.5n, which’s about 25% more flexible.

Tongue is fantastic and stays put

Take note, all other running brands. 

It’s somewhat thin at just 5.5mm, breathable, and although it's minimal it has a small strip of padding down the center, offering just enough to keep the laces from digging into the top of your foot. 


It’s also fully gusseted with a sheer, slightly flexible mesh that keeps the tongue in place, makes it easy to slide your foot in and out, and provides excellent lockdown. It seems simple at first glance, but it’s really just well designed. 

Lacks a proper outsole, especially the durable one

The lack of proper rubber makes this shoe a little slipper in my experience. The snow is melting here in Colorado and I found myself wishing for more outsole than the slivers of rubber Saucony gave us with this shoe. 


The Kinvara has always had a lot of exposed EVA on its underside, it keeps weight down. To me, it’s a downside though. 


Also, I only put in about 22 miles on this shoe and there’s already enough wear to concern me.  I don’t think this is a 500-mile shoe, the lack of outsole takes away from its longevity.

Keeps you close to the ground

In a day and age where midsoles have gotten taller and taller, I am glad the Kinvara 12 keeps my feet close to the ground.

At just 26mm this shoe is one of the lower stack shoes we’ve tested and it made me forget why we needed 40mm stack heights at all. 


The Kinvara is designed as a midfoot and forefoot striking shoe with a low 4mm drop, and it’s not the same responsiveness you get out of higher-end midsoles like on the Endorphin Speed.  

Where it shines is: it is simple and it works without the unnecessary weight other shoes in this price range usually carry. 

Lightweight level: You’ll forget you’re wearing Saucony Kinvara 12

I really enjoyed running in these, mainly because of how light they are. 


At 7.6 ounces, they are a joy to have on your feet, and without really trying, they actually carried me to my fastest 5-mile effort in a while. 


Overall, it’s a Kinvara. It’s simple, it’s light, it will pack well for travel, it can do long runs, fast runs, slow runs, and everything in between. It’s minimal in nature but not lacking too much. 

Sure it’s not high tech like the Endorphin line, and it’s not the rockstar it was 10 years ago, but it’s a solid performer, at a great price point ($110), that’s comfortable, consistent, and one shoe that can check a lot of boxes. 

If you need a shoe that’s light and isn’t trying too hard to be something it’s not, the Kinvara 12 fits the bill!  

Complete lab-specs overview 

Saucony Kinvara 12
Weight - Left 218g
Weight - Right 215g
Weight - Insole 20g
Weight - Lace 4.1g
Length - Overall 291mm
Length - Insole 273mm
Width Midsole - Forefoot  112.5mm
Width Midsole - Heel 88.3mm
Width Midsole - Middle  70.3mm
Width Upper - Forefoot 98.5mm
Width Upper - Heel 73.6mm
Width Upper - Middle 71.6mm
Stack - Forefoot with insole 21.5mm
Stack - Heel with insole 36.1mm
Stack - Forefoot without insole 17.4mm
Stack - Heel without insole 21.2mm
Drop 4.6mm
Outsole thickness (Forefoot) 1.5mm
Outsole thickness (Heel) 1.5mm
Lugs Depth NA
Insole Thickness 3.8mm
Laces (without stretch) 49inches
Laces (with stretch) 60inches
Lace Stretch  22.45%
Laces - Thickness (Height) 1.2mm
Laces - Width 5.99mm
Durometer Outsole Forefoot (Room Temp) 82.7HC
Durometer Outsole Heel (Room Temp) 82.3HC
Durometer Midsole Forefoot (Room Temp) 30.7HA
Durometer Midsole Forefoot 2nd layer (Room Temp) N/A
Durometer Midsole Heel (Room Temp) 31.2HA
Durometer Insole (Room Temp) 40.7HA
Flexibility of the shoe (Room Temp 18.3N
Durometer Outsole Forefoot (Freezer 1 hour) 85HC
Durometer Outsole Heel (Freezer 1 hour) 84.8HC
Durometer Midsole Forefoot (Freezer 1 hour) 36HA
Durometer Midsole Forefoot 2nd layer (Freezer 1 hour) N/A
Durometer Midsole Heel (Freezer 1 hour) 36.2HA
Durometer Insole (Freezer 1 hour) 40.7HA
Flexibility of the shoe (Freezer 1 hour) 42N
Durometer Outsole Forefoot (% change with temperature) 2.82
Durometer Outsole Heel (% change with temperature) 3.04
Durometer Midsole Forefoot (% change with temperature) 17.39
Durometer Midsole Heel (% change with temperature) 16.04
Durometer Insole (% change with temperature) 0
Flexibility of the shoe (% change with temperature) 129.98
Thickness - Heel Counter/Insert 1.5mm
Thickness - Ankle Collar (Front) 6mm
Thickness - Ankle Collar (Middle) 9.3mm
Thickness - Ankle Collar (Back) 11.1mm
Heel counter material fiber board
Thickness - Tongue 5.5mm
Flexibility of the heel counter  64.2N
Light test (transparence) 98.3LUX
Lace slip test with the knot 19.9N
Longitudinal flexibility (0-5) 2
Torsional flexibility (0-5) 2
Tongue: gusset type Gusseted (both sides)
Laces: profile  Flat
Laces: extra hole  yes
Laces: are they long enough to use the extra hole  no
Heel tab type Pool tab
Insole: removable yes
Control devices:
Multi-density midsole
Rigid heel counter
Elevated medial insole under arch
Supportive tensioned medial upper
Medial flare
Thermoplastic medial post

How minimalist the shoe is in % 36

Note: all the tests were done on a men's shoe US size 9.

CREDITs : https://runrepeat.com/saucony-kinvara-12 by RUN Repeat