Ecco recently provided an update to a number of their existing shoe models for the 2023 season, and among them was the BIOM H4 hybrid shoe, which is said to now be "sleekier, sportier and more youthful."
I reviewed the first iteration of the BIOM H4 back in 2021 and thought that the contemporary design was a big step up for Ecco, whilst also being impressed with the comfort and stability that they provided.
Could Ecco find room for improvement this year?
The BIOM H4 has been partially redesigned this year with a reworked upper, most notably around the toe of the shoe, for a sleeker look.
A new tongue design is said to be a more ergonomic shape which helps the shoe to fit more comfortably to the foot.
The shoe features the same BIOM 2.0 last, along with the Natural Motion technology to keep the foot moving naturally close to the ground, like a second skin around the foot.
On the sole of the shoe, the MTN grip is split into three distinct sections to provide a blend of traction, stability and rotational support, and the Fluidform Direct Comfort Technology is designed to give extra cushioning for more comfort.
There is also Gore-Tex technology which helps to keep the feet dry and comfortable in wet conditions, as well as X-Tensa technology which connects the TPU element on the side of the shoe with the lacing system, to enhance stability.
Ecco BIOM H4 2023 Golf Shoe Review
Ecco shoes have traditionally had the reputation as being more suited to the older golfer, but over the last few years the brand have done a good job of modernising their designs to try and widen the appeal and the BIOM H4 continues this theme.
I received the shoes in the Grey colourway which is pretty smart and versatile, and the blue TPU elements on the sole are a nice feature to add a bit of interest. I prefer the all-blue to the blue and red TPU elements of the previous BIOM H4, whilst the all-white sole does look smart too.
More colour options in the standard laced model would be nice rather than just the grey or white - an all-black or black with grey would look really smart in this model.
You do get a couple of other options if you pick the BOA version, but of course not everyone will fancy that lacing system, plus it will cost you an extra £40.
The new design definitely provided a smaller profile as I have found Ecco shoes to be a little large and rounded at the front in the past. The H4 looks a little sleeker and as a result I think it makes it a bit lighter too.
The shoes provide out of the box comfort, and the sock liner adds to the ease of sliding your foot in and out while also keeping your foot comfortable and securely in place.
The new tongue design is an improvement, as it sits lower on the foot, making it less intrusive and providing more comfortable walking and swinging, particularly on slopes where the tongue may dig in.
As previously mentioned the shoe feels slightly more lightweight than the previous model and this adds to the comfort levels too, as it offered more mobility and it felt as if there was a bit more breathability too.
The shoes come with great quality laces that sit flat, feel sturdy, and are easy to tie evenly. This is only a small feature can make a big difference in terms of comfort levels, providing extra security while walking and swinging.
Despite not being a traditional spiked shoe, the traction of the BIOM H4 was outstanding, providing all of the grip and stability that a spiked shoe would offer, but with the added bonus that you'd be able to wear them to the driving range or even in spike bar following your round.
I did find that the design of the lugs on the outsole meant that the shoe seemed to pick up quite a lot more debris than usual, so make sure you clean them off properly before venturing indoors or you won't be friends with the bar staff at your golf club!
There was a bit of moisture around when I tested these shoes but they certainly passed the waterproof test as my feet remained perfectly dry throughout, although I would take care with the textured upper around the top of the shoe which could be hard clean if it was to get dirty.
These shoes were released within Ecco's spring/summer shoe range and they probably would be better suited to the warmer and drier months, but they're not completely trainer-like and I do think they are versatile enough to use all-year round, particularly in the grey colourway.
Ecco BIOM H4 2023 Golf Shoe Verdict
The new model had all the same comfort and stability as the previous Biom H4 but with a slightly smaller shape which I think helped to make it feel a bit more lightweight and therefore seemed easier to move and swing in.
At an RRP of £190 Ecco have put the price up by £20 compared to the previous BIOM H4 which I already felt were expensive for what is essentially a spikeless shoe. This puts them right at the top end of the market and will undoubtedly price some golfers out instantly.
But you get a fantastic quality shoe which is likely to last you for a good few seasons, and the performance is pretty much as good as a spiked model anyway which does improve the value a bit.
I really enjoyed testing these shoes and I came away feeling pretty much the same as I always do when it comes to Ecco - if you're after comfort and stability, then they're very hard to beat.
Would I Use Them?
Definitely, they give you everything you could want from a modern hybrid golf shoe.
Who Are They Aimed At?
Anyone who has used and enjoyed Ecco shoes before will get the same benefits that they'd expect from this shoe. If you're happy to pay a little extra money for great quality, plenty of comfort and lots of stability then these must be worth considering.
Anyone who is an avid golfer should also consider them, as their durability means you're much more likely to get your money's worth.
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