HOKA Solimar vS Clifton 8: What Should I Buy?

Looking for a lightweight, responsive running shoe that can handle both short and long distances? The HOKA Solimar and Hoka Clifton 8 are two popular neutral shoes to consider. But with similar features, how do you choose between them?

This in-depth comparison reviews the key specs, materials, performance, and ideal uses of each model. Read on to determine if the Solimar or Clifton 8 is the better match for your running needs.

Similarities And Differences Between Hoka Solimar and Clifton 8:

SpecsHOKA SolimarHoka Clifton 8
Launch Date20222021
Weight8.6 oz (M), 7.2 oz (W)8.8 oz (M), 7.4 oz (W)
Drop5mm5mm
CushioningModerateHigh
StabilityNeutralNeutral
UpperEngineered meshEngineered mesh
MidsoleCMEVA foamCMEVA foam
OutsoleRubberRubber
Price$125$180

Features Comparison: HOKA Solimar vs Clifton 8

Now we will see how the features of both shoes differ when we compare them head to head.

Materials

The Solimar uses a breathable engineered mesh upper with durable printed overlays for structure and support. The midsole is made from compression-molded CMEVA foam, providing responsive cushioning that isn’t overly plush. The high-abrasion rubber outsole enhances durability.

Hoka Solimar
SOLIMAR

Hoka Clifton 8
CLIFTON 8

The Clifton 8 also utilizes an engineered mesh upper for breathability, with printed overlays for a secure fit. Its midsole is composed of softer CMEVA foam for extra cushioning and shock absorption. The rubber outsole is the same as the Solimar.

Durability

Testers found both the Solimar and Clifton 8 to be durable for high-mileage training. The rubber outsoles show minimal wear over time, and the supportive uppers maintain their structure well. The Clifton 8’s softer foam may compress slightly more over long distances.

Fit

The SOLIMAR fits true to size for most runners, with a comfortable roomy toe box and secure midfoot lockdown. The upper offers a bit more structure than the Clifton 8.

Hoka Solimar Top view
SOLIMAR TOP VIEW

Hoka Clifton 8 Top view
CLIFTON 8 TOP VIEW

The Clifton 8 runs slightly longer with a more relaxed fit throughout. The engineered mesh upper adapts well to different foot shapes. Some may need to size down half a size for the best fit.

Stability

As neutral shoes, the Solimar and Clifton 8 cater to runners with high arches and neutral pronation. Both offer just enough midsole height to provide a stable platform without extra medial support. The SOLIMAR’s upper includes more rigid printed overlays for added midfoot security.

Cushioning

The SOLIMAR offers a firm yet responsive ride. The compressed CMEVA foam provides moderate cushioning that is forgiving without feeling mushy or unstable. The rockered geometry encourages an efficient toe-off.

The Clifton 8 has an exceptionally soft, pillowy ride. The high-volume CMEVA midsole absorbs impact while still feeling bouncy. The plush cushioning provides all-day comfort at slower paces but can feel a bit unsteady at faster speeds.

Value

At $125, the SOLIMAR costs $55 less than the Clifton 8 while still providing a durable engineered mesh upper and responsive compressed foam cushioning system. For runners looking for an affordable lightweight trainer from HOKA, the SOLIMAR is a great value option.

The Clifton 8 retails for $180, which is moderate pricing for a high-mileage daily trainer. Runners appreciate the extremely soft cushioning and smooth rockered sole, making the price tag worthwhile for high-volume training.

Performance Comparison:

By now we have given you a detailed analysis of the features offered by both models. In this section, we will compare the performance of both shoes to help you make an informed decision.

Walking

The SOLIMAR provides a good amount of cushioning for walking without feeling overly soft or unstable. The firm foam and rockered shape make walking feel smooth and natural.

The Clifton 8 excels at walking due to its ultra-plush cushioning. The soft midsole absorbs shock while the curved shape keeps each step feeling fluid. The relaxed upper accommodates swelling feet.

Running

Built for speed, the SOLIMAR offers an energetic, responsive ride at faster paces. The moderate cushioning provides a good ground feel without harshness. Quick turnover feels effortless.

The Clifton 8 shines for easy mileage but can feel a bit ponderous when running fast. The pillowy midsole cushions every stride but compresses significantly on sharp cuts and turns.

Plantar Fasciitis

The SOLIMAR’s firm yet forgiving foam midsole helps reduce stress on the plantar fascia while providing support. The roomy toe box gives toes space to splay and relax.

The Clifton 8 excels for plantar fasciitis due to its ultra-soft, shock-absorbing cushioning. The flexibility allows natural foot movement to ease fascia tension. The curved shape encourages a smooth heel-to-toe transition.

Standing All Day

The SOLIMAR offers adequate cushioning and support for extended standing or walking. Though not as soft as the Clifton 8, the responsive midsole still helps reduce fatigue for long hours on your feet.

With its plush cushioning, the Clifton 8 is exceptional for standing all day. Testers experienced significantly less foot soreness and pain wearing these shoes for extended periods of time.

Final Verdict:

The HOKA SOLIMAR is the better choice if you want a lightweight, firm trainer for faster paces and moderate distances. The blend of support and responsiveness makes it a versatile shoe for neutral runners.


The Hoka Clifton 8 stands out for high-mileage training, recovery runs, and walking due to its ultra-soft midsole. If you desire maximum cushioning above all else, the Clifton 8 delivers plush comfort mile after mile.

Both are high-quality neutral trainers, but the SOLIMAR provides a more responsive and stable ride while the Clifton 8 prioritizes pillowy-soft cushioning.

Consider your running needs and style to decide which model matches your preferences. With their breathable uppers, durable rubber outsoles, and rockered soles, you can’t go wrong with either of these HOKA shoes.

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