Hoka Clifton 9 VS Mach 6: What Should I Buy?

Running shoes are more than just footwear – they’re the foundation for your fitness journey. Among the sea of options, Hoka OneOne’s Clifton 9 and Mach 6 stand out as exceptional contenders. The Clifton 9 promises plush cushioning for everyday comfort, while the Mach 6 delivers a lightweight, responsive ride for speed sessions.

In this comprehensive comparison, we’ll explore the unique strengths of each model, helping you choose the perfect companion for your specific needs, whether you’re a casual walker or a dedicated runner seeking peak performance.

Similarities And Differences Between Hoka Clifton 9 And Mach 6:

FeatureClifton 9Mach 6
Launched In20222024
StabilityInherently stable geometrySymmetrical bed of cushion
Weight8.70 oz8.20 oz
CushionDesigned for protective cushioningLow-profile cushion bed
OutsoleDurabrasion rubberStrategic rubber coverage
MidsoleCompression molded EVA foamSuper critical foam
UpperBreathable engineered knitCreel jacquard upper
Retail Price$145$140

Features Comparison:

Material: Outsole, Insole, Upper

The Clifton 9 showcases a meticulously crafted upper composed of a breathable engineered knit, ensuring superior ventilation and foot-hugging comfort. Its durabrasion rubber outsole is designed to withstand the rigors of everyday use, promising extended longevity.

The compression-molded EVA foam midsole delivers lightweight cushioning, while the sockliner top cloth is crafted from 100% recycled polyester, reflecting Hoka OneOne’s commitment to sustainability.

Clifton 9
CLIFTON 9

MACH 6
MACH 6

On the other hand, the Mach 6 boasts a creel jacquard upper engineered with zonal breathability, allowing your feet to stay cool and dry during intense workouts.

The strategic rubber outsole coverage prioritizes durability without compromising weight, providing a perfect balance. Beneath, the super critical foam midsole offers a responsive and resilient underfoot feel, propelling you forward with every stride.

Durability:

When it comes to durability, both the Clifton 9 and the Mach 6 excel in their own unique ways. The Clifton 9’s durabrasion rubber outsole is designed to withstand the rigors of everyday use, ensuring longevity and reliable traction. Additionally, the compression-molded EVA foam midsole is engineered to maintain its cushioning properties over extended periods of wear.

The Mach 6, on the other hand, incorporates strategic rubber outsole coverage in high-wear areas, maximizing durability without adding unnecessary weight. The supercritical foam midsole is not only lightweight but also resilient, maintaining its responsive nature even after extensive use.

Fit:

Achieving the perfect fit is paramount for both comfort and performance. The Clifton 9 excels in this department with its breathable engineered knit upper that hugs the foot snugly, providing a secure and customized fit. The gusseted tongue further enhances overall comfort by preventing unwanted tongue migration.

Clifton 9 Top View
CLIFTON 9 TOP VIEW

MACH 6 TOP VIEW
MACH 6 TOP VIEW

Similarly, the Mach 6 prioritizes a locked-in fit through its creel jacquard upper and dual internal gusset. The streamlined collar foam package minimizes bulk, ensuring a sleek and comfortable wrap around the ankle.

Stability:

Stability is a crucial factor, especially for runners prone to overpronation or supination. The Clifton 9 addresses this concern with its inherently stable geometry, providing a symmetrical bed of cushion without the need for additional prescriptive technologies. This design philosophy allows for natural foot motion while offering the desired support.

The Mach 6 follows a similar approach, featuring a symmetrical bed of cushion that aims to provide the support you need without unnecessary interventions. This minimalistic design promotes a natural stride and reduces the risk of discomfort or injury.

Cushioning:

Cushioning plays a pivotal role in both comfort and impact absorption. The Clifton 9 is designed to provide protective cushioning while maintaining a responsive toe-off, ensuring a smooth transition from heel-strike to toe-off. This balance makes it suitable for everyday runs as well as casual walks.

In contrast, the Mach 6 features a low-profile cushion bed that keeps your foot closer to the ground. The firmer midsole material is engineered to provide an efficient push-off, catering to those who prefer a more responsive and connected feel during their runs.

Value for Money:

When it comes to value for money, both the Clifton 9 and the Mach 6 present compelling propositions. The Clifton 9, with its retail price of $145, offers a well-rounded package of comfort, cushioning, and durability, making it an excellent investment for those seeking a reliable everyday trainer.

On the other hand, the Mach 6, priced at $140, delivers a lightweight and responsive ride, coupled with strategic durability features. Its focus on speed and performance makes it an attractive option for runners seeking a versatile and efficient shoe for training and racing.

Performance Comparision:

For Walking:

Both the Clifton 9 and the Mach 6 are well-equipped to handle the demands of casual walking. The Clifton 9’s generous cushioning and inherently stable geometry provide a comfortable and supportive experience, making it an ideal choice for those who spend extended periods on their feet.

The Mach 6, while designed with a performance-oriented approach, still delivers a responsive and cushioned ride for walking. Its low-profile cushion bed and strategic rubber coverage ensure a smooth and stable gait, making it a viable option for those seeking a versatile shoe for daily activities.

For Running:

When it comes to running, the Clifton 9 and the Mach 6 cater to different preferences and running styles. The Clifton 9, with its protective cushioning and early-stage Meta-Rocker technology, excels at providing a smooth and comfortable ride for everyday training runs and longer distances.

In contrast, the Mach 6 is tailored for speed and responsiveness. Its super-critical foam midsole and strategic rubber outsole coverage are designed to deliver an energetic and efficient push-off, making it an excellent choice for faster-paced workouts, intervals, and races.

For Plantar Fasciitis:

Individuals dealing with plantar fasciitis require shoes that offer ample cushioning and support to alleviate the strain on the foot’s fascia. In this regard, the Clifton 9 emerges as the more suitable option due to its generous cushioning and inherently stable geometry. The compression-molded EVA foam midsole provides shock absorption and distributes impact forces evenly, reducing the stress on the plantar fascia.

While the Mach 6 offers a responsive and lightweight ride, its firmer midsole and low-profile cushion bed may not provide the necessary cushioning and support for those suffering from plantar fasciitis.

For Standing All Day:

When it comes to standing for extended periods, the Clifton 9 stands out as the preferred choice. Its plush cushioning and inherently stable geometry work in tandem to provide superior comfort and support, alleviating the strain on your feet and legs throughout the day.

The Mach 6, while an excellent option for running and performance-oriented activities, may not offer the same level of cushioning and support required for prolonged standing. Its firmer midsole and low-profile cushion bed are geared more towards responsiveness and energy return, which may not be the ideal configuration for standing all day.

Final Verdict:

If plush cushioning and unwavering comfort are your top priorities, the Clifton 9 emerges as the clear frontrunner. Its generous cushioning, inherent stability, and smooth transitions make it an excellent choice for everyday wear, whether you’re pounding the pavement or simply on your feet all day.


On the other hand, the Mach 6 caters to the needs of performance-driven runners seeking a lightweight and responsive ride. Its energetic midsole and strategic rubber coverage deliver an efficient push-off, making it the ideal companion for faster-paced workouts, intervals, and races.

Ultimately, both shoes exemplify Hoka OneOne’s commitment to crafting high-quality footwear that meets the diverse demands of athletes and casual wearers alike, ensuring you can confidently embark on your next adventure.

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