New Balance Minimus Teaser Photos and Surprises

Exclusive New Balance Minimus shoe photos

OK so it seems like no one really liked my personal rendition of what a New Balance Minimus shoe might look like.  But desperate times called for desperate measures since searching online for any photos yielded nothing tangible. However, it looks like our prayers have been answered. New Balance has sent us some teaser photos of the Minimus…and they look sexy! Looking at the photos also reveals some very surprising info. Read and watch on!

Recap for anyone not familiar with the Minimus Shoe Collection:

  • This is a dedicated barefoot-inspired shoe line that will include 3 different modesl to start: running, trail running, and a wellness model
  • Minimus will launch officially in March of 2011
  • Minimus collection is built on lots of testing and past experience with other minimalist shoes (like MT100/WT100 and the upcoming New Balance 101 shoes)

Close up of a New Balance Minimus shoe view of logoA close up of the back of the upcoming New Balance Minimus shoeNew Balance Minimus uses Vibram for the Outer Sole

Looking at the photos (especially the last photo) reveals some interesting information

  • Looks like it’s using a very breathable mesh-like material (similar to the 100 or 101 line of trail running shoes)
  • Most shocking is the fact that Vibram, who is well known for their Vibram FiveFingers barefoot shoes, is supplying the outer sole for the shoe and their logo is prominently featured on the shoe

It’s interesting how Vibram will be supplying parts of the shoe for the Minimus collection. Vibram, if you didn’t know, well before the popularity of FiveFingers, has been in the business of making high quality rubber outer soles for other shoe makers…a lot of their soles end up making their way into boots. What’s intersting is how the Minimus collection represents competition for FiveFingers, but at the same time a business opportunity.

All along I was thinking how Vibram would need to look out for competition from New Balance, but it seems like it’s not so clear cut anymore…since technically they are partners too. Overall I think it’s a good win/win situation…can’t wait for more details to emerge.

Let us know what you think.  You think they’ll also do a FiveFinger toed version New Balance shoe?

{ 14 comments… add one }

  • ginny July 29, 2010, 3:41 am

    if they are anything close to the nike free’s ill definitely be a fan of them… looking forward to your reviews.. you guys always introduce some good information.. I was able to pick up a pair of the bikilas because of your last newsletter blast before it was sold out again!

    Reply
  • Tracy Thomas July 29, 2010, 5:54 am

    The soles will be nothing like the Nike Free…no thick cushioning here!!!

    Reply
  • Amp July 29, 2010, 8:46 am

    Nice! How much you want to bet that Vibram agreed not to make a zerofinger version of the fivefinger (allowing the NB to do so) as long as NB agreed to use vibram rubber and display the vibram name.

    Reply
  • Ernie July 29, 2010, 2:40 pm

    Interested in seeing how these look and run. Have the KSO’s since February, and was doing fine in them till recently, my pinky toe started getting smashed and the KSO turned my toenail black! Also my bones above the balls of my feet were feeling “sore”, so not sure what was going on there.

    So last week, tried out the Nike Free and bought a pair, and the little extra cushion seems to have lessened the pain in my forefoot. Toes feel fine and feels good overall.

    When March ’11 rolls around, will definitely have to check these NB’s out!

    Reply
  • Timothy July 29, 2010, 6:23 pm

    Where are these shoes made? I run barefoot to avoid shoes made in sweatshops by underpaid overworked slaves. Find me a pair made by North American union workers and maybe we’ll have a sale! Until then, I’ll bear my blisters with pride in honor of those tricked into slavery.

    Reply
  • barefootie July 29, 2010, 8:25 pm

    @Timothy, These shoes (like many New Balance shoes) should all be made in the United States…at least that’s according to Wikipedia…

    “New Balance is notable in that it has continued to maintain a manufacturing presence in the United States as well as in the United Kingdom for the European market—in contrast to its competitors in the same market space, such as Nike and Adidas, who purchase designs from manufacturers in China, Vietnam, and other developing nations. The result of this corporate decision is that the shoes tend to be more expensive than New Balance’s competitors. To offset this pricing discrepancy, New Balance offers technical innovations that the other brands do not, such as a blend of gel inserts, heel counters, and greater selection of sizes, particularly for very narrow and/or very wide widths.”

    So yeah, you won’t need to live with blisters once these shoes launch..,

    Reply
  • claire July 29, 2010, 10:54 pm

    I’ve been running in Fivefinger sprints for a year now, and they’re beginning to wear – the material between the toes is rubbing through. This year I want something too keep my toes warmer in the cold damp English winter, and although these shoes look really interesting and might well turn out to be a “zero-finger” in feel and performance, I don’t think mesh uppers are going to hold out the weather very long.

    Reply
    • barefootie July 30, 2010, 7:38 pm

      @claire, yeah, i think breathability is great depending on the circumstance. If live in warm to hot climates it’s probably a god send…but for someone like yourself who has to deal with running on cold damp days I can imagine breathability is probably the last thing you’re thinking about!

      Reply
  • MONTAGNE RUNNING September 5, 2010, 9:48 am

    Timothy July 29, 2010 at 6:23 pm
    Where are these shoes made? I run barefoot to avoid shoes made in sweatshops by underpaid overworked slaves. Find me a pair made by North American union workers and maybe we’ll have a sale! Until then, I’ll bear my blisters with pride in honor of those tricked into slavery. @Timothy much respect for the above statement!!!

    @barefootie, your right New Balance dedicates a portion of it line to U.S.A manufacturing, however some of their line is also manufactured in China.
    I wrote to NB to inquire of them- were their Minimus line will be manufacture… Have not received a response as of yet.

    Reply
  • Frank September 8, 2010, 8:19 am

    I work at a New Balance store in CT and tried on a prototype of the shoe. Having not worn minimus anything before, it was very different for me, but they are VERY comfortable! The 4mm drop makes it feel like there is nothing there. I tried them on without socks, which was another change for me, but I can’t really say anything bad about them!

    Reply
  • christopher February 21, 2011, 4:27 pm

    i just got a pair. i ran 5 miles on a dirt trail with no socks and no problems. they are very comfortable and fit snugly on your foot. I encourage anyone who warns a minimalist shoe to get these!

    PS i tried vibrams and i hated the individual toe compartments, so i dont have to worry about those.

    Reply
  • PAT February 26, 2011, 4:20 pm

    I got mine Friday. They are awesome.

    Reply
  • Bob March 23, 2011, 6:23 pm

    These shoes are minimal-there is not as much too them. So why do they still
    cost $90 . I have worn New Balance for years, but no more, not unless they bring
    the price of these way down, because I found I can get by with a pair of homemade huaraches, or flat converse sneakers. When I started running in 1978 New Balance
    sold a shoe which was just a sole and a nylon upper, and then over the years they
    starting adding all the garbage, and to think it was unnecessary. Well homey
    don’t play the buying $90 shoes anymore. Barefoot and loving it. Free at last!

    Reply

Leave a Comment