Stöckli never seems satisfied with perfection. No one was complaining that the 2018 Laser AX was unstable or insufficiently smooth or lacking in contact at the top of the turn, but Stöckli found ways to improve the 2019 Laser AX in all areas. The keystone move is a slight widening of the tip and tail called Full Edge Contact that engages the ski the instant it’s tipped. FEC works in concert with tip and tail rocker zones to reduce rocker and increase edge contact whenever the tip is pressured, a feature Stöckli calls Adaptive Contact Length. Another auto-correcting technology is Turtle Shell, S-shaped splits in the top and bottom Titanal sheets that tighten when tensioned by shock and flexion. At slow speeds that don’t induce the same level of vibration, the Turtle Shell Titanal sheets relax so the ski is easier to flex and control. You can’t fool the Stöckli Laser AX; it knows how you ski. Other new features include a new Light Core made from balsa for lighter weight and faster reflexes and a Turtle Grip textured topskin that’s more durable. The combined effect of all these new elements is to expand the Laser AX’s reach. Turtle Shell modulates the ski’s response to speed and pressure, so intermediates can command it in confidence. The extra shape and earlier contact of ACL (maybe on acronym too far?) creates crazy-good turn initiation for a rockered tip. “A forgiving Carver which can rip or relax,” is one tester’s succinct portrait of its on-hill versatility. Another submits a more granular report: “A sweet ride. You can make small turns, long turns, high speed and slow. A young ripper to a seasoned veteran can ski this ski. Not overly edgy. Smooth as silk. Women can ski this ski. Low intermediates and up can use the ski.” That doesn’t leave many skiers for whom the Laser AX is not designed. That may sound like hyperbole, but all it will take is one run on the 2019 Laser AX to convince you that it’s not.
Full Review with test scores available on members’ site.