The 1080v2 is the latest premium shoe from New Balance in the neutral category. Designed to provides a smooth, cushioned, lightweight ride the New Balance 1080V introduces a whole host of new features including a redesigned T-Beam, TPU shank that offers the neutral runner the midfoot stability they crave.
The shoe also has a new, low profile heel-toe drop that promises to offer the natural foot strike of a minimalist shoe with the comfort of a traditional running shoe.
As a fan of New Ballance shoes I was pretty excited when my review pair were delivered especially as I love the tennis ball yellow and white design.
Let’s lace up and head out.
As is common with most modern running shoes, New Balance have opted for a no seam upper which not only lightens the shoe but also means that the 1080v don’t rub as much as previous models.
The synthetic top mesh provides a breathable feel that allows for good overall airflow and ventilation. The toe box offers that goldilocks fit that we look for in a shoe, not too wide and not too tight – just right.
I also like how the dual-density heel collar uses both a softer density foam against the foot for cushioning, and a firmer density foam for support. When laced up, I was extremely pleased with the feel of the shoe and when running didn’t experience any hot spots, pressure points or heel slippage.
New Balance have invested some solid research and development time into the 1080V2. For example, they have completely reinvented the heel, introducing their N2 technology into the heel cushioning. New Balance N2 is foam cushioning that has been injected with nitrogen which has the benefit of providing excellent cushioning with less material needed.
The ride is quite low with an 8mm heel-toe drop (20mm in the heel and 12mm in the forefoot) but thanks to an engineered central lightweight T-beam the shoe deliver optimum torsional stability and arch support. The result is a more natural foot strike.
What I didn’t initially like was the firmness of the sole. When I first headed out to put them through their paces the sole felt extremely stiff however on subsequent runs they softened significantly to the point that I almost forgot I was wearing them.
After an initial concern that the New Balance 1080V2 were going to be far too firm for my liking I was relieved to find that actually they provided an extremely comfortable ride that offered 8mm heel-toe drop (which is fast becoming my favourite ratio for everything up to 8 mile runs).
The 1080V2 gripped extremely well across a number of different surfaced and best of all they felt extremely secure without being too tight or pinching. While the weight of 297 grams / 10.48 ounces doesn’t make them a lightweight running shoe by any means; the comfort and grip will make them ideal for training runs.
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