Hoka Clifton 8 vs. Hoka Mach 4 (2022)

Hoka Clifton 8 vs. Hoka Mach 4

The Hoka Mach 4 was one of the biggest surprises of 2021, while the Hoka Clifton 8 is the most popular model in the Hoka collection. So let’s which one comes out on top!

Mach 4 has surprised runners so much because it has made an unexpected leap forward in terms of bounce, comfort, and durability compared to the Mach 3.

It’s lighter than the Clifton 8, and the upper offers a more structured foot lockdown. Both shoes have the same stack height in terms of cushioning, but the Mach 4 has firmer cushioning. The bounce is equivalent, with perhaps a slight advantage for the M4.

Overall, the Mach 4 has the edge, and we recommend it if you’re on the fence. However, athletes looking for soft cushioning and a flexible foot lockdown will prefer the Clifton 8.

Side-by-side comparison

Bottom Line
A versatile lightweight running with a soft and comfortable cushioning
Great comfort
Soft, high-stack cushioning, which is responsive enough for daily runs
Bigger upper suitable for runners with wider feet
Breathable (and vegan!) mesh
Lightweight shoe
Lack of stability, according to some testers
The looser fit of the upper can be tricky to adjust for athletes with thin feet
The best in the series so far with a lightweight, soft and lively configuration—ideal for long daily runs
Comfortable and lively cushioning
Lightweight trainer
Great upper fit
Sturdy build
Soft yet stable
Long laces are a bit impractical
Upper is a bit warm
It feels heavier than it is and somewhat awkward at fast speed

Hoka Clifton 8

Hoka Mach 4

Technical Specs

Pronation typeNeutralNeutral
Drop5 mm5 mm
Heel stack height29 mm29 mm
Forefoot stack height24 mm24 mm
Weight (men)250 g/8.8 oz227 g/8 oz
Weight (women)215 g/7.6 oz191 g/6.7 oz
Release year20212021


OutsoleZonal rubber, flex groovesRubberized EVA foam, flex grooves
MidsoleCMEVA, Meta-Rocker Geometry, OrthoLitePROFLY, Early Stage Meta-Rocker, Swallow Tail
Upper100% vegan engineered meshEngineered mesh with heat pressed TPU embroidered yarns, anatomical design for the Achilles, slightly padded gusseted tongue


Softness (1-5)4 – Soft2 – Firm
Bounce (1-5)3 – Moderate3 – Moderate


SpeedModerateSlow, moderate
DistanceMid, long, 10k, half marathon, marathonMid, long, 10k, half marathon, marathon
WorkoutDaily runs, recoveryDaily runs
Kevin Le Gall

Kevin Le Gall

Kevin is the founder and editor of Runner's Lab. He started running in 2015 and completed his first marathon in Rotterdam in 2016. He's also worked for Under Armour from 2016 to 2018 and helped launch their running collection in Europe (in particular the HOVR shoes). In addition, Kevin is a 300-hour certified yoga teacher (Sivananda) and uses this experience to run more mindfully with a focus on well-being over performance.