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We test the limits of the Navigator 80 from Nordica, a piste-biased, recreational all-mountain ski with skin clips, sounds a little too good to be true...
Level
Recreational
Terrain
All Mountain
Best for
Piste skiers
Price
£430
Season
2018/19
lengths
158, 165, 172, 179
Bindings?
No
Float
6
Playfulness
7
Value
7
Edge hold
9
Stability
8
Turn initiation
9
Overall Score
7
+
Great on-piste performance
Poor everywhere else, and kind of cynical in design

First of all the Navigator range from Nordica looks nice. Artistic mountain-inspired graphics suggest a freeride bent, whereas the shape suggests a penchant for long turns on hardpack and the very modest 80mm width says 'don't take me off-piste' while the skin clip on the tail says, well, what exactly??

The Navigator 80 sends mixed messages, which is not uncommon for an all mountain ski. If we put the looks aside, this is a piste oriented recreational ski. It's smooth and responsive with great edge hold even on icy pistes, and it also performs in bumps. Despite appearing built for long carving turns, the Navigator 80 is very nimble edge to edge.

Where it doesn't excel is off-piste. The Navigator 80 is very powerful up front, and in fact too stiff for any chopped up and cruddy side-country resulting in deflections all over the place and eventually being dumped in the snow.

Neither should anyone consider mounting touring bindings on this ski. It's far too heavy to be a piste-ascending fitness tool, and couldn't handle the downhill of off-piste touring. The addition of ski clips appears to be designed to improve the ski's 'all mountain' credentials, and as such ends up being a highly irritating marketing ploy.

This is a very piste-focussed 'all mountain' ski, and shouldn't be judged on it's looks.

All our reviews are independent and unbiased. We may earn a commission when you buy from links to Amazon and other affiliates on this page.