'Super solid, seriously supportive boot from the outdoor footwear hot-house of northern Italy with top-notch components and impressive build quality'
Outdoors Magic: Solid, supportive and beautifully made, pulley-type lace hooks, all leather uppers, Vibram sole, deceptively comfortable.
Outdoors Tragic: Slightly heavy, stiffness won't suit all.
Outdoors Grabbit? The Power Matic 200 GV is a beautifully made, stiff-soled, high mountain backpacking boot. The solid construction is reflected in the slightly weighty feel, but the boot manages to be deceptively comfortable with a medium volume fit. Small touches like the easy-running pulley-type lace hooks really do make a difference, artful ankle cuff design improves comfort and mobility and there's good grip from the Vibram outsole. Not everyone wants stiff soled boots, but if you want a lot of support and these fit, they work very well indeed on mountain terrain. OTT for lower paths though.
Full keather hill and mountain walking boot / 2.8mm full-grain leather uppers / rubber toe-bumper / Asolo Vibram triple-density PU sole construction / Micro Pulley lacing system / Gore-Tex waterproof lining
Full Review Below
Asolo Power Matic 200 GV Boot | Performance
Asolo makes plenty of lighter, more flexible boots - check out the Falcon GV or the classic, no-nonsense Fugitive GTX if you want something less stiff - but the stomping Power Matic 200 GV is all about combining bomb-proof build with plenty of underfoot stiffness combined with all-day comfort and cushion for mountain walking and backpacking.
The all-leather uppers with cunningly engineered ankle-cuff shout 'serious', but the amount of development that's gone into the sole unit is less visually apparently. That specially-developed Asolo/Vibram sole unit mixes three different densities of PU cushioning injected and molded together.
The idea is that a high-density front section gives stability, a medium density cushioned heel offers comfort, but without squidge, while four distinctive light-hued pillars add extra strategic comfort - they're the light grey dots in the sole unit above.
Other refinements include the neat Micro Pulley lace-hooks. They might sound gimmicky, but they mean the laces flow easily through the lace-hooks making it easy to precisely control lace tension for comfort. If you've ever battled with snaggy lace-hooks, you'll know that's a huge boon.
Fit is medium volume, but there's also a wide fit option if you need it. Once on and snugged up, there's no avoiding the solid underfoot feel, but there's also decent shock-absorption on hard surfaces and, most importantly, the uppers feel immediately comfortable in a way that's not always the case with more traditional mountain boots.
They wouldn't be our first choice for a moorland saunter or lowland footpath wander, but if you're toting big loads on rough mountain paths, the support from the sole combined with easy ankle flex and mobility makes them reassuring and, arguably, less tiring over the course of a long day.
The pay-off is that they are heavier than we'd like, but northern Italian artisan build standards - they're made in Asolo's Romanian factory however - suggest they should last well. There's no rubber rand however, just a toe-cap.
Asolo Power Matic 200 GV Boot | Verdict
Solid and supportive underfoot, but deceptively comfortable up top straight out of the box, the Power Matic 200 GV is a great option for those who like plenty of sole stiffness, but don't want their ankles splinted into position.
The super technical sole unit seems to work too, lots of grip and decent cushioning make stomping across mountain terrain all-day comfortable and the PU will outlast lightweight EVA cushioning. Thumbs up also to the Micro Pulley lace-hooks. They do a great job of helping you get lace tension just right from the off.
They're not light and they're not super cheap and they do feel a little clumpy, but solid build quality and durability are the other side of that coin and we'd expect these to last most walkers a good while.