Merrell MQM Flex 2 GTX
The Merrell MQM Flex 2 GTX is a versatile and lightweight hiking shoe suitable for day hikes and trail running.
When it comes to the midsole, the Flex 2.0 is cushioned to absorb shock. In fact, the shoe is crafted with a rock plate between the midsole and outsole to protect feet better. With FLEXconnect technology for enhanced agility and the tried and true Merrell Air Cushion in the heel for proper foot alignment, this midsole is a hiker's dream. Meanwhile, the upper is a waterproof mesh, which means that your foot can breathe without absorbing outside moisture. The shoe's wide tongue supports this design, as it's attached to the sides of the upper for added protection. Finally, the Quantum Grip outsole grips terrain and helps control footing, especially when hiking downhill.
Though users of the Flex 2.0 listed its versatility as a plus, some complained that the shoe was too versatile. Basically, in catering to a range of trail activities, the shoe is not specialized or technical enough. Some users remarked that the Flex 2.0 fell short on longer or more complex hikes, where more rigidity would have been useful. Others noticed that the toe box is very narrow, posing a problem for those with wider feet. However, those who enjoy recreational trail runs and hikes may find that the Flex 2.0 is exactly what they need!
Note that the Flex 2.0 comes with GTX (Gore-Tex) technology, or without. GTX is what makes this model waterproof, which adds a significant price jump to an otherwise standard shoe. Users who tested GTX said it worked well for light rain but would not work in unpredictable weather. Thus, the price may not warrant the "waterproof" delineation.
The MQM Flex 2.0 is available for $110, making it a cost-effective option for short, easy hikes. The GTX version of the 2.0 is priced at $140, which is probably better skipped.
In short, the lightweight and versatile profile of the Merrell MQM Flex 2.0 makes it a good option for trail runners who moonlight as hikers or the other way around.
- Great comfort
- Lightweight shoe
- Effective grip for most conditions
- Good foot protection
- Highly versatile
- Lack of rigidity for long and difficult hikes
- GTX insulation to be improved
- A bit narrow around the forefoot
- The outsole of the Merrell MQM Flex 2 uses Quantum Grip to ensure a good grip on trail terrains. It’s a sturdy rubber built to last on rugged paths.
- The 5 mm lugs increase traction on trail terrains to effortlessly face the most perilous conditions. Those rubber parts are multidirectional with an aggressive design.
- The midsole relies on foam to absorb impacts and support the foot for a comfortable hike.
- Also, FLEXconnect is a technology that consists of dual direction flex grooves to give a more flexible ride. It allows the shoe to better adapt to the movements of the foot.
- There’s also the Air Cushion crash pad under the heel to improve shock absorption upon landing and stabilize the foot for more security, especially downhill.
- The upper of the Merrell MQM Flex 2 features an engineered mesh that comfortably keeps the foot secure inside the shoe while allowing airflow, especially when it’s hot outside.
- The rock shield is found between the midsole and the outsole to protect the foot from sharp debris on trails.
- The TPU toe cap shields the forefoot from potentially harmful shocks on trail terrains.
- Gore-Tex Invisible Fit is an impermeable membrane inside the shoe that keeps your foot dry and fresh while running to be more comfortable.
- Finally, the Bellows Tongue prevents elements from slipping inside the shoe on the trails. Also, the design of the tongue (wide and connected to the vamp on each side) prevents it from slipping to one side to walk worry-free.
Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
Does the Merrell MQM Flex 2 fit true to size?
Yes, this model fits regularly. Indeed, until now, we haven’t seen notes from runners mentioning that it’s big or small. However, some users report that it’s a bit narrow around the forefoot. Therefore, it would be wise to try them on in a shop to make sure you find the best size for your feet.
Is the Merrell MQM Flex 2 waterproof?
This model is available in two versions: regular and Gore-Tex. The regular model is water-repellent and sufficient for light rain and to cross puddles and shallow streams of water. If you need more protection to face heavy rains and keep your feet dry at (almost) all times, then the GTX version may be a better option. Keep in mind that it’s slightly heavier and pricier, though.