2024 Volkl Kendo 88

Ski Stats

Sidecut 129/88/113
Radius 29m/16m/25m @ 177cm
Lengths 163,170,177,184
Weight 1898g @ 177cm
MSRP $699.99
Power Score: 9.32

Finesse Score: 9.11

As predicted in this space two years ago, last year Völkl has applied the same two transformative technologies to the 2023 Kendo 88 that it had debuted in the M6 Mantra the prior year. Bear in mind that the 2022 Kendo 88 was already the highest rated Power ski in the ski world’s most competitive genre, yet the 2023 version raised the bar still higher for both its Power and, most notably, Finesse scores. No pretender has emerged in 2024 to challenge its ownership of the top Power score. How do its lofty test scores translate to the ski experience? Here’s how veteran ski tester and renowned boot expert Jim Schaffner summed up his experience on the Kendo 88: “This ski has an amazing range of performance. Today the snow was a combination of old, compacted snow, new wind-blown snow, and solid ice where the fresh snow was blown off. The Kendo did it all with ease. Very good grip on the hard stuff, with a silky feel on the duff.” Dallas Goldsmith of Goldsmith’s Ski & Board - in several ways Schaffner’s physiological antipode - also attested to the latest version’s new-and-improved status: “This ski has always been great, but this year’s upgrades are noticeable. The 88 category has many great skis and this is in the top three for sure.” Mark Rafferty from Peter Glenn confirmed that, “The 2023 Kendo is noticeably better [than the prior version]. The 3D radius deal is real. The Kendo 88 makes fast GS turns as happily as it rips short-radius trenches. A joy to ski the entire mountain.” The Kendo 88’s built-in ability to instantly adapt to its master’s commands is a marvel. All you need to switch from a long-radius cruiser to a snappy-quick cobra is a change in edge angle and a dollop of pressure. You don’t even have to rock forward to generate a short-radius turn; you can operate all the controls from a centered stance. The skier doesn’t have to do anything special other than stay in balance, for the Kendo 88’s energy output can shift gears on the fly. If you want to make short turns, go get ‘em, they’re there for the asking. Otherwise, put it in cruise and I’ll see you at the lift.
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