Volkl Skis Review | Epic Skis or Rip Off? [2021] + Guide

About an hour’s drive in the north of Munich, Germany, you will find the Bavarian town of Straubing, home to the world’s leading manufacturer of the finest skis. Volkl is known for its cutting-edge technology, development, and research in the ski industry. They are the leading brand of weekend warriors and world-class athletes for top-tier ski gear.

As the forerunner of the German ski industry, Volkl stated true to its humble beginnings by continuing to design and produce skis at Straubing, Germany, while making a bigger name worldwide. Volkl’s innovations like the M5 Mantra and the RTM 81 skis have continued to push forward on what is possible in ski design. 

In this Volkl skis review, you will find a product review of their bestselling skis, Volkl’s company history, ski buying guide, and a helpful FAQ section for interested buyers of Volkl skis. 

At Volkl, cutting-edge technology meets traditional craftsmanship to produce the highest quality, most precise, and top-tier skis worldwide. Here are some of the top Volkl skis they have released in the previous years.

Top 10 Best Volkl Skis Reviewed

  1. RTM 81 Skis 2019 with Bindings by Volkl – Best Overall
  2. M5 Mantra Skis 2020 by Volkl – Best Value
  3. Kendo Skis 2019 by Volkl – Editor’s Choice
  4. Kanjo 2019 by Volkl
  5. Kenja 88 Women’s Skis 2020 by Volkl
  6. Racetiger SLR 9 MM w/ Race Plate 2018 by Volkl
  7. Deacon 84 Skis w/ Lowride XL Bindings 2020 by Volkl
  8. Revolt 86 2020 by Volkl
  9. 90Eight 2019 by Volkl
  10. Confession Skis 2020 by Volkl

#1. RTM 81 Skis 2019 with Bindings by Volkl – Best Overall

 

RTM 81 Skis with Bindings

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Over recent seasons, the Volkl RTM series have become very famous. This time, Volkl introduces another new model with the RTM 81 2019. This ski carves excellently with impressive control in short turn radius and better edge hold in longer turns. Volkl designed these skis to work well on hardpack by filling you with confidence and adrenaline at every turn.  

The RTM 81’s early rise tip and tail rocker ensure easier turn initiation to make you feel comfortable and confident, even on steeper and trickier terrains. Skiers mostly on the piste will love the RTM 81 with its highly versatile performance by allowing skiers to enjoy the side piste while tackling crud or powder off the edge of the slopes.

With an 81mm waist width, the RTM 81 is one of the most accessible skis in the RTM series with its responsive, forgiving, and easy to handle performance. It is an excellent choice for skiers who want to enhance their skills while venturing off the piste. 

If you want a high-power performance while being kinder and accessible on bank balance, the Volk RTM 81 2019 is an ideal choice

ProsCons
High performing and accessible ski on bank balanceNot versatile enough when heading full off-piste

#2. M5 Mantra Skis 2020 by Volkl – Best Value

M5 Mantra Skis 2020

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The Volkl M5 Mantra skis are one of the ultimate all-mountain skis for men. Whether you’re looking for your favorite old powder stashes in the Rockies, slaying big mountain lines, or railing GS style, this ski will work perfectly for you. Volkl has decided to redesign the M5 for 2020 by increasing the sidecut, slightly reducing the metal, and re-adding a camber underfoot.

Amid all these changes, Volkl retains M5’s pow-slaying abilities, groomer-ripping, and crud-busting techniques from the previous years, while adding more bop and energy. The new M5 Mantra handles various conditions with ease and delivers impressive performance for a wide range of ski abilities.  

Advanced skiers seeking a one-ski quiver don’t need to look further. The Volkl Mantra retained the Titanal frame from last year. For the 2020 model, Mantra retained older models’ performances, but this time with enhanced maneuverability. At 96mm underfoot, the M5 got narrower and more fun. 

ProsCons
Great stability, torsional stiffness, and quicknessIdeal for all-mountain advanced skiers

#3. Kendo Skis 2019 by Volkl – Editor’s Choice

Kendo Skis 2019

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The Kendo from Volkl comes back in 2019 with a longer model, the Kendo 2019, now with enhanced flotation and stability in powder. 

The Kendo 2019 does a great job on the groomers. It will impress you not only for its quality and performance but also with its stability and grip. With its two reinforced Titanal plates, the Kendo delivers more stiffness on the terrain.

Despite its 22m radius, the Kendo 2019 is remarkably versatile and very well-balanced. It prefers long turns at high speed, but it can rapidly change its radius, despite its size. It smoothly alternates between skid and instinctive carve turns. Its excellent stability and consistent behavior make Kendo 2019 a great ski for intermediate skiers who want to ride with confidence while having few technical skills.

In off-piste, skiers find Kendo 2019 with great potential. It’s exceptionally good in powder as it glides very well, and its stiffness allows to cut through the crud with ease. Overall, the Volkl Kendo is a very good trail ski with impressive off-trail potential. 

ProsCons
Remarkable versatile, and well-balancedNot ideal for lighter weight and non aggressive skiers

#4. Kanjo 2019 by Volkl

Kanjo 2019

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 The Volkl Kanjo 2019 is a very lively ski with loads of pop, allowing transitions across terrains super easy and smooth. Skiers don’t have to worry about where they are going, as Kanjo 2019 will make you feel confident as it supports you in various terrains, no matter the condition.

Volkl included a Titanal band on the ski’s center, giving it a large amount of stability and torsional stiffness that you will appreciate on off-piste and more tricky terrains. With its tip and tail rockers and all-mountain profile, powders days become more fun. What’s more, Kanjo 2019 does not compromise on-piste performance. It holds an edge very nicely on groomed runs and provides a lively yet smooth ride.

Volkl describes the Kanjo 2019 as a perfect ski for off-piste riders who want to try on-piste skiing. Overall, the Volkl Kanjo 2019 is an excellent choice for intermediate skiers who want to develop their skills in various terrains and conditions.  

ProsCons
Perfect for intermediate skiers who want to enhance skillsNot ideal for expert skiers

#5. Kenja 88 Women’s Skis 2020 by Volkl

Kenja 88 Women’s Skis 2020

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The Kenja 88 is one of Volk’s top selling women’s ski that excels in different resort conditions. Kenja 88 underwent a full redesign for winter 2019 and 2020 by losing a few millimeters of width for added versatility, precision, stability, and smoothness. 

Kenja 88 is perfect for intermediate to advanced female skiers who fancy a good time on the powder without compromising their piste performance. It ensures ease of use but may take aggressive skiing on its stride.

With its versatile 88mm waist width and a minimum rocker in its tip and tail, the Kenja 88 leaves you well-equipped on all conditions, especially in knee-deep powder. Whether you’re going off-piste for a quick bumps run or trying out some fresh snow off the sides, the Kenja 88 guarantees you’re in safe hands. 

ProsCons
A lively ski that handles turns very wellSlightly fatiguing to ski

#6. Racetiger SLR 9 MM w/ Race Plate 2018 by Volkl

Racetiger SLR 9 MM w/ Race Plate

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Volkl is known for producing performance-oriented skis and the Racetiger SLR is not an exception. True to its name, testers describe it as “a beast,” “aggressive,” and a “weapon.” Its performance goes at a maximum level as a recreational slalom skis. It is full of energy, powerful, precise, and snappy.  

Many skiers got impressed by its edge grip, high speed, stability, and efficient rebound at the end of a turn. As a slalom ski, Racetiger SL is very convenient in larger radius turns. It also has a natural tendency to dig into the snow, giving it an impressive edge grip and ability to hold a line when making turns.

On the other hand, Racetiger SL is not ideal for everyone. It is unforgiving and requires focus. It works best among advanced skiers who are aggressive, well-centered, in good physical condition, and willing to go at higher speeds.

Overall, the Racetiger SL is a high-performance ski suitable for advanced to expert skiers who want an all-performance ski. 

ProsCons
Excellent edge grip Poor in making skidded turns

#7. Deacon 84 Skis w/ Lowride XL Bindings 2020 by Volkl

Deacon 84 Skis w/ Lowride XL Bindings 2020 by Volkl

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Like all Volkl high-performance skis, Deacon 84 Lowride has a classy and smooth feel with a perfect blend of subtlety and power. While it can go anywhere on the mountains comfortably, its major strength is on-piste performance. 

Volkl and Marker bindings worked together to develop an integrated binding that provides more contact between the skis and bindings while allowing its mounting points closer to the edge. It makes wider skis easier to control and more agile because its small edging movements immediately transfers to the skis.

Deacon 84’s sidecut allows the skier to do short and long turns easily at a range of speeds. Plus, its tip and tail rocker make turn initiation a breeze. This way, the Deacon washes off speed during tight situations like cat-tracks or trees. Its material construction is made of 3D senor wood core wrapped in a Titanal frame, giving the ski its liveliness and power.

ProsCons
Remarkable on-piste performanceMay not be the sharpest coat on an icy piste

#8. Revolt 86 2020 by Volkl

Revolt 86 2020

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Whether you enjoy hitting the streets at night or making hot laps at the park, the Volkl Revolt 86 is a perfect choice. For this model, Volkl designed the Revolt 86 to perform like a workhorse: durable, stuff, and poppy.

The Revolt 86 is Volkl’s newest entry for all-mountain twin tips. It boasts of its new directional shape of 120-86-110 and a tip and tail rocker. With its bomber tough box construction and Multi-Layer Wood core, the Revolt 86 delivers great mountain versatility for solid riders who want to try ski park runs.

The Revolt 86 has an impressive torsional rigidity without additional weight, thanks to its full camber profile with carbon stringers that run on its entire length and a dense ash wood underfoot. It also has poplar in the entire core that boosts the ski’s bop and energy. Overall, the Revolt 86’s tail dimensions and symmetrical tip works best for skiers who enjoy landings and switch takeoffs.

ProsCons
Performs with all-mountain versatilityNot ideal for high-speed giant slalom turns on hard pack

#9. 90Eight 2019 by Volkl

90Eight 2019

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The Volkl 90Eight boasts of its excellent turn versatility as an all-mountain ski, with the ability to carve short slalom trenches on hard pack and make powerful, long arcs. It is an impressive all-mountain ski, but lighter. 

The 90Eight 2019 works best when you leave the pistes. It has a considerable waist width and well-distributed flex work. With this, the 90Eight proves to be accessible on all terrains and conditions. It floats in powder, switches to choppy snow, and pivots well.

When on-piste, the 90Eight makes a great performance. It is also versatile that is capable on all terrains with a preference for off-piste. The 90Eight works well for skilled riders who want a ski that is always at ease when going off-piste but can do freeride touring as well. 

ProsCons
Great on-piste performanceMore of a hard snow ski
Great turn versatilityNot much float

#10. Confession Skis 2020 by Volkl

Confession Skis 2020 by Volkl

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The Volkl Confession Skis 2020 takes the top spot as one of Volk’s biggest mountain skis. With its profile, shape, and construction, Volkl created a smart, tough, and floaty set of burly skis that can satisfy the demands of freeride skiers.

With an 11m underfoot, the Confession skis are significantly wide that stays on top at various depths. They can plow right through chunder and crud and blast through chop and corn with no issues. The skis also have a relatively long turn radius, so you can let things loose when the terrain opens up. 

The Confession skis have a multi-layer wood core that provides strength and stiffness to achieve optimum speed on any terrain. It also has a Titanal band at the ski’s central spine that makes the ski responsive and playful despite being burly.  

Expert and advanced level skiers will love the Confession ski’s rocker profile as it bites into steeper and challenging terrains. 

ProsCons
Ideal for steeper terrainsNot good on groomers

Buyer’s Guide: What to Know When Buying Volkl Skis

Volkl’s range of ski models differs in dimensions, designs, shape, ability level, and terrain type. Before you plan on buying Volkl skis, you need to explore the different categories of their ski product line. Their ski models are based on five different types: Race, All Mountain, Freeride, Freestyle, and Touring. Read on to find out how each ski category differs in performance.

Racing

All Volkl Racetiger models are more aggressive and narrower than other Volkl skis. Ski racers will benefit from Volk’s generations of continuous ski development by providing more edge grip and greater speed. Volkl racing skis include Racetiger GS Pro and Racetiger GS. 

All-Mountain

All-mountain conditions can be quite different in terms of snow quality and terrain. There are times when the snow becomes cruel and icy, grippy and steep, groomed and soft, or anything in between. That is why Volkl provides a range of all-mountain skis that caters to a skier’s preferences, ability, and riding styles. Some examples of the latest all-mountain skis under Volkl include Deacon 76 and Deacon 76 Pro.

Freeride

Volkl very well knows the exact formula to satisfy every freeride skier: ultimate control, optimized flotation, versatility in any terrain, and playful dynamics. Volkl’s latest freeride skis are Blaze 106 W in teal and Blaze 106 in yellow.

Freestyle

Volkl’s freestyle skis resulted from the harmonious teamwork among Volk’s renowned artists, skilled engineers, talented athletes, and product management team. As a result, they created premium freestyle skis like Revolt 104 and Revolt 121.

Touring

Volkl knows what every touring skier is looking for: getting a well-deserved workout, experiencing nature, exploring the alpines, or chasing untracked powder. Along with many reasons, Volkl released specialized touring skis like BMT 90 and BMT 109. 


Volkl Skis: Company & History

For almost 100 years, Volkl remained consistent for their passion for skiing and producing high-performance skis. Based in Germany, Volkl is one of the largest ski manufacturers worldwide. 

Their long history began with its founder, Georg Volkl, a master cart maker who builds horse-drawn wagons. His son Franz diversified the family business by producing sleds, boats, and skis.

By the 1970s, Volkl ventured into international alpine racing. Their high-performing skis helped renowned ski racers like Hanni Wenzel, Hilde Gerg, and Maria Walliser bag countless worldwide victories and Olympic medals. In the 90s, Volkl became the first producer of carving skis, with its first model Snow Ranger.

By 2007, Volkl introduced cutting-edge technologies on their ski product, including the Power Switch Technology. This mechanism helps skiers to adjust their skis according to their fitness level and snow conditions.

In the succeeding years, Volkl received several accolades for their ski models in SKI Magazine and Freeskier Magazine. These include popular ski models, such as Attiva Kiku, Tigershark, and Bridge. 

At Volkl, high-tech innovation meets traditional artistry to create outstanding and high-quality skis worldwide. They focus on enhancing its ski production and creating the perfect ski setup to revolutionize the ski industry.


Conclusion

Located in Straubing, Germany, Volkl has become the torchbearer of German-made ski products since 1923. They have been pushing their limits in creating cutting-edge technologies in the ski industry. 

For almost 100 years, they continue to impress international skiers with their technologically advanced skis through their skilled engineers, athletes, testers, designers, and artisans. It is no doubt that Volkl has become one of the biggest snow sports brands worldwide.

May this Volkl skis review helped you find the best Volkl skis that fit your preference, ability level, and style. The Volkl ski collection is wide-ranging, with models for racing, freeskiing, all-mountain, touring, etc. They have hundreds of ski selections on their website formed by their hundred years of ski manufacturing expertise.


FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

How will I know which ski length works for me?

When buying skis, it would be best to ask Volkl’s local dealer. They will advise you on finding the ideal ski length by discussing this in detail with you. Finding the right ski dimensions can be difficult since it depends on your ability level. Skilled skiers usually prefer longer skis than beginner and intermediate level skiers. Plus, ski length also depends on your preferred model. For example, freeride skis should be longer than on-piste slalom skis. 

Which binding fits my ski?

For Volkl’s ski models such as Code, Racetiger, RTM, and Flair, they use specialized bindings specifically constructed for each ski. Volkl’s flat surface skis (FIS-racing, Freestyle, Freeride, and Touring), they recommend to check out Marker’s website. They are an exclusive provider of ski bindings. You can find various bindings fit for Volkl’s ski range. You can also turn to Volkl’s local dealer by checking the store locator on their website.  

How do I get a Volkl sponsorship?

The initial step towards getting a sponsorship is to discuss it with a sales rep or a nearby local dealer. You can discuss the opportunity of getting sponsored by Volkl in your area. Interested skiers who won several achievements in various ski competitions or have a collection of video material may get in touch with Volkl’s national sales department. 

On the other hand, if you want to be a part of Volkl’s test team, you can send them an email through their website.  

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