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56 skis tested by professionals

Ski Review 2018



Click on the name of a model to view a full review

Völk Kendo [click]
Type of ski : All Mountain 70/30
Best performance!Best performance!
The Kendo from Völkl is a benchmark in this segment, always getting high scores from the PROSKILAB reviewers and loved by the ski community. On piste, it’s a high-strung and stiff tool with exceptional qualities for a ski in this category. The Kendo loves speed and is happy in dynamic turns, on hard pack and steep slopes. Good grip, turn precision, stability and rebound... the cocktail is always just as astonishing. However, we also noted that the ski needs additional effort to bend in short turns. Off-piste, it will go everywhere and is especially happy in choppy snow where its stiffness lets it cut through wads of snow without deforming. The Kendo is an athletic ski and pretty demanding, so we recommend it for very good to expert, medium to heavy build riders, who can engage with it physically. Lighter, less technical or athletic riders would probably do better choosing the Stormrider 88, the Experience 88HD or the Pinnacle 85.

Liked: Performance High-strung character Loves speed Cuts through crud All terrain qualities ...

Disliked: A stiff ski that requires engagement, ill-adapted to lighter riders...

Völk RTM 76 [click]
Type of ski : Men's recreational groomers

Like the Speedzone 7, Völkl's RTM 76 is very accessible when it comes to mastering skid turns and will help riders advance to more technical turns. The ski is accessible from the middle of ESF class 2, in other words, once riders have mastered parallel turns. It’s slightly less accessible than the Dynastar because the tail hampers behaviour to some extent in back-leaning positions. Skiers who are well centred don’t need to worry. The ski will help riders make technical progress remarkably well. It's happy to step up the pace, with very good grip and great stability. Riders can make easy progress to carving/slicing clean arcs with little physical effort. The RTM 76 is an excellent tool for riders who've mastered parallel turns and want to move on to the next level.

Liked: Generally accessible Easy turn initiation and rotation Skid turns Good performance and carving qualities Good grip ...

Disliked: Slightly grippy and lethargic tail may hamper riders in a back-leaning position...

Völk 90Eight [click]
Type of ski :
Testers' ChoiceRecommended by our reviewers!
Since the brand’s Kendo, Mantra and Cochise regularly score high in the PROSKILAB reviews, we were curious to see how Völkl’s 90Eight (for "98") behaves in this category where we’re also looking for lightness. It was no surprise that the 90Eight is a bit heavier and stiffer than its playmates, with more emphasis on performance. It behaves well and is efficient both on and off piste. Its stability is remarkable for a ski in this category. Once on the white stuff, it will take you anywhere with incredible ease. Its stiffness makes its performance impressive on crud or hard pack. It’s an easy-to-handle ski, reassuring and incredibly docile off-piste, so it's accessible to intermediary riders. But it can also take you far performance-wise, and requires a certain degree of engagement and technical skill to manage correctly. The 90Eight is a true, light "all mountain" ski, perfectly versatile and happy on all terrains, including the groomed runs. With 1790 grams (ski only) under each foot, it won’t be the first one up, but offers incredible enjoyment going down! We recommend this model for intermediate to expert riders who’re looking for a lighter ski but don't want to sacrifice performance.

Liked: Overall performance Strong character Consistent flex distribution Reassuring behaviour Overall stability On-piste/off-piste versatility Tran...

Disliked: Lacks incisiveness Technically and physically demanding when pushed to its limits Physically demanding ...

Völk Mantra [click]
Type of ski : All Mountain 50/50

Generally getting high praise from the reviewers and taking home a "Best ski" award last year, this year the Mantra lost a few places, probably because of the softer snow conditions and the arrival of new high-flying contenders like the Stormrider 95. The ski is still an excellent model and a market benchmark, but the reviewers found it more demanding than in previous years. The Mantra is still a stiff ski, grippy, high-strung, and very efficient on hard pack, happy sweeping through big turns at top speed. On the other hand, it's less happy than its rivals at slower speeds, in short turns and on softer snow. It’s the ideal ski for riders who love to engage, slicing big loops at full throttle on the groomed trails and charging through snowy fields of powder off the beaten track.

Liked: Carving long turns on the piste Well-balanced ski Very strong character Excellent grip Stability Speed ...

Disliked: A stiff ski Inertia and heaviness Physically demanding ...

Völk RTM 81 [click]
Type of ski : Men's high-end

Völkl‘s RTM 81 puts the focus squarely on performance, especially high speed and long turns where it excels. It’s an energetic, even aggressive ski, which requires engagement and a forward position to be handled correctly. It’s slightly less happy in short turns where the rider has to show some stamina, not helped by a rather flexible tail, and rebound that lacks energy. The RTM 81 is great for good to very good sporty riders who love long turns and riding fast without necessarily wanting to invest in a ski that’s too demanding or technical.

Liked: Versatile All mountain Great stability Energetic Responsive ski tip for incisive turn initiation Good behaviour at high speed Smooth long tur...

Disliked: A big radius ski, far more demanding in short turns Needs to be well positioned (forward) Requires physical engagement ...

Völk RaceTiger RC [click]
Type of ski : On-piste cruisers

Don’t forget that ProSkiLab reviews a selection of the best skis on the market. This means that excellent skis can sometimes finish last. That's what happened to the Racetiger RC from Völkl, that has great qualities but was somewhat too "underpowered" to do well in this category. Despite its consistent and reassuring behaviour, the ski is flexible and lacks responsiveness and bite. It’s still an excellent ski that would probably have done better in the "Top-of-the-Range" category. It’s a good choice for average to good riders looking for a ski that performs well, is consistent, easy and enjoyable to ride.

Liked: User-friendly Consistent Good compromise between comfort/accessible/versatility Smooth in soft snow Skid and slide turns ...

Disliked: Performance falls a bit short Lacks character and energy for this category ...

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