Expert Review: 2023 Faction Mana 2 Skis [with Video]
Ski Experts Brandon Westburg and Hayden Wright tested the 2023 Faction Mana 2 skis on carving, freestyle, and freeride at Powder Mountain in Utah.
Curated Ski Experts Brandon Westburg and Hayden Wright tested the 2023 Faction Mana 2 skis at Powder Mountain this past spring. See what they thought of the ski in the carving, freestyle, and freeride categories, and then be sure to chat with a Curated Ski Expert with any questions you have and to get free, personalized recommendations on the best skis for your needs.
Before we get started, it's worth noting that Curated Experts are not sponsored by any brands. All of these reviews are completely unbiased.
What does Faction claim about this ski? [Brandon] Faction claims that the Mana 2 is an all-mountain freestyle twin tip that does fantastic in anything from powder to park. Just so you know, we're not sponsored by any of these ski brands or paid as well. So all of these reviews are honest opinions from all of our Curated Experts.
[Hayden] Factions claims that the Faction Mana, 2 is your all-mountain, one ski can do everything from the park to the powder, as an all-mountain groomer. It's a high-performance ski with a popular core. Also, has carbon rubber dampers underfoot making this thing super stable coming down from jumps. For being mainly wood-core ski here, I did not notice. For being a mainly wood-core ski, I did not notice much chatter with these at speeds. 102 millimeters underfoot, definitely hold edge. Awesome going down the hill.
What is your overall impression of the ski? [Brandon] We had a few inches of snow on the ground here at Powder Mountain in Utah to play around with this well, so that made it extra fun to test this ski. I got a great feel of every capability of this ski from powder to park. My first impression of the Faction Mana 2 is a really fun ski with a lot of pop. Knowing that this ski replaces the Candide line that Faction was priorly producing for many years past, I only expected great things. So we got to ride it in a variety of conditions today. Caught a significant amount of air, got to butter, and play around as the ski is intended to be skied. The Faction Mana 2 was really fun on the groomers. It's 102 underfoot, so it's that perfect waist width for a park in an all-mountain ski that has plenty of capabilities all around the resort.
What is the profile of the ski? [Hayden] The Mana 2, it's a full rocker camber rocker, natural twin tip ski, super easy going forward and switch. Holds an edge, has a great switch, because we do have that early rise in both the tip and the tail. This ski is made to be road forward and backward.
What is the flex of the ski? [Brandon] Faction states that it has an eight out of 10 flex rating, so that gave me plenty of confidence that I could drive the ski hard and have great edge hold no matter the snow conditions. We had about two or three inches of snow on top of some pretty firm groomers and I held an edge quite well at most all speeds.
What is the edge hold like? [Brandon] Looking at the pattern of the ski, we have a rocker, camber rocker, so that more enough should give you enough edge grip and plenty of flotation when the fresh stuff does fall.
How is its stability? [Brandon] It’s stable, semi damp, but still keeping it playful and fun. Great ski for the park and, really, anywhere around the mountain. I didn't have any sort of sketchy landings, and if I did, or if you are skiing this and getting a little questionable and sketchy, expect this to have your back. There's plenty of great stability when landing, when skiing switch, really like the mountain is your playground on this ski.
How is its control at speed and its energy of acceleration? [Brandon] I thought the Faction Mana 2 was easy to control at speed, and also was fairly easy to move from a lower speed to a higher speed quickly. Also, the reverse toning it down from moving fast to slow with ease. Threw on the brakes a few times, and didn't experience any chatter. Acceleration was just as awesome as the prior Candide series. Expect if not more from this new Mono series with Faction.
Any playfulness in the ski? [Brandon] They did a great job of the construction and building of this ski to create a fun, playful ski that has a ton of pop as well. Did some slower turns, and smeared them around.
Did some fun butters as well. Also got to crank it up to full speed and ski this ski fast. Didn't experience any chatter. Again, mostly because of that eight out of 10 flex rating, you should be feeling confident skiing the ski full speed, shibbing around, buttering it, having fun, and skiing this ski how it's intended to be skied with no chatter or any worries that your edge won't hold or provide great grip for you on groomers or any variable snowpack as well.
What is the float like with the ski? [Brandon] East coast, this is almost the perfect ski for you, having enough edge hold underfoot for those firmer days but still being able to float in the powder and catch some air in the park as well.
What type of terrain can the ski take? [Brandon] On this firmer terrain today, it was really fun to pop around, and overall, is a fantastic blend between stiffness and playful and fun.
[Hayden] We were able to get it into some variable terrain, some uneven landing. We were able to get it into some variable terrain, even when landing in uneven areas or whatever. You're going to feel that carbon rubber core, they call it a stomp pad underneath your boot.
Who would you recommend this ski to? [Brandon] If you're a beginner just looking to get into all-mountain skiing, this wouldn't be a bad choice for you as it's not the stiffest of flexes and it remains somewhat playful in nature as well.
Who would you not recommend this ski to? [Brandon] If you're looking for your very first pair of all-mountain skis, I would not recommend the Faction Mana 2. There are some other options out there that are going to be easier to turn or maybe are not 102 underfoot, but that might be a little much for those beginner skiers looking to get into all mountain and powder skiing.
[Hayden] I would not recommend this ski to beginners only because it's a hundred, and 200 feet. If you're still learning how to ski, it might be a little bit too much ski for you.
Skis work differently for different types of skiers. If you'd like help finding the right pair of skis for you, reach out to Brandon, Hayden, or another Ski Expert here on Curated for free, personalized recommendations.