The design of a new adaptive virtual cut-through router for torus networks is presented in this paper. With much lower VLSI costs than adaptive wormhole routers, the adaptive Bubble router is even faster than deterministic wormhole routers based on virtual channels. This has been achieved by combining a low-cost deadlock avoidance mechanism for virtual cut-through networks, called Bubble flow control, with an adequate design of the router’s arbiter. A thorough methodology has been employed to quantify the impact that this router design has at all levels, from its hardware cost to the system performance when running parallel applications. At the VLSI level, our proposal is the adaptive router with the shortest clock cycle and node delay when compared with other state- of-the-art alternatives. This translates into the lowest latency and highest throughput understandardsyntheticloads. Atsystemlevel,thesegainsreducetheexecutiontime of the benchmarks considered. Compared with current adaptive wormhole routers, the execution time is reduced by up to 27%. Furthermore, this is the only router that improves system performance when compared with simpler static designs.