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The Ultimate Review of the New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080 v13

New Balance continue to push the boundaries with running shoe technologies, we take a deep-dive into the all new New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080 v13.

Typically deemed unlucky for most, Friday 13th October had been circled in the Up & Running UK calendar for many months following New Balance’s announcement of the highly anticipated Fresh Foam X 1080 v13.

The new and improved Fresh Foam X brings a whole new experience to daily running with supreme soft cushioning, elevated comfort and an improved fit for all runners. Marketed by New Balance themselves as the “world’s best running shoe for everyone”, we’ve put the reimagined version of the ever-popular 1080 range through its paces to tell you everything there is to know about New Balance’s latest weapon in their growing arsenal. 

Key technology:

Fresh Foam X: A brand new foam compound paired with an increased midsole stack provides new levels of comfort for all distances. The foam’s bio-based content is made from renewable resources to help reduce New Balance’s carbon footprint - both ethical and comfortable.

Outsole design: Years of testing in the New Balance Sports Research Lab culminated in a design which increases forefoot stiffness while enhancing the ‘rocker’ shape to improve transitions between strides. A durable rubber outsole finishes the 1080 v13 supplying a multi-dimensional traction between strides which aims to decrease slippage and ultimately, injury.

New Balance Fresh Foam 1080 v13

Key stats:

Weight: M 216g / W 206g Stack height: 38/32mm Drop: 6mm

Despite no outlandish changes to its widely-loved predecessors [1080 v12, v11, v10], New Balance have honed in on fewer, more important updates to ensure the 1080 range continues to outlive its competitors’. And now on its 13th iteration, the 1080 v13 demonstrates New Balance’s devotion to comfort, stability and durability.

Out of the box:

Straight out of the box these trainers are extremely comfortable - you can instantly feel the sponge-like foam that engulfs the entirety of your sole. Also noticeable is the apparent lack of ‘bulkiness’; this isn’t a shoe that feels heavy, or particularly big on-foot, in fact, its streamlined design makes it one of the more low-profile ultra-comfortable shoes on the market. The fit is fairly true-to-size, perhaps slightly on the tighter side but we expect that to be the additional foam and stack-height making the toe-box narrower.

The soft, breathable upper instantly screams high-quality, with New Balance clearly making the effort to emphasise the all-new elasticated laces, tongue and heel counter. For those clocking the big weeks, these features are preferable in a high-mileage machine to secure the foot down and avoid any blisters.

The obvious home for the 1080 v13’s would be the road, yet testing this shoe on the grass and trails did not declare any reason why the shoe could not handle some light off-road work too (weather dependent, of course). This statement is further supported by the durable rubber outsole which can withstand some of the wear and tear uneven surfaces throw at it.

A slight issue did arise when attempting a few ‘strides’ in the shoe - while certainly not marketed for speed-purposes, anything faster than 6:30/mi in these and I began to feel unstable. I’d put that down to the brand-new Fresh Foam X being created with absorption in mind; the shoe offers virtually no return at faster paces meaning this one is ideal for those low and slow miles where recovery is paramount.

In addition, the shoe has been designed with total neutrality in-mind - if you’re a runner who prefers a stability shoe, or something that offers support for pronation, then perhaps looking at the Fresh Foam X 860 or Vongo V6 in the NB range would be a better option. 

New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080 v13

Final thoughts

In summary, the meticulous approach to comfort from New Balance allows these shoes to be ready-to-wear from the minute they arrive. A few ‘up and down’ years for the 1080 range has led to some speculation about the future of the shoe, but the 1080 v13’s have certainly secured the legacy of New Balance’s max-cushioned milage monster for many years to come…  Gone are the days of ‘breaking in’ new trainers and the 1080 v13’s are certainly asking you to consider them for any easy jogs around the park to long runs on the road.

Unlike the Fresh Foam X, the New Balance FuelCell SuperComp Elite v3 is designed to give you a competitive edge on race-day with a full-length carbon fibre plate and ultra-lightweight knitted upper.

The expertly designed FuelCell midsole aims to offer maximum propulsion through the forefoot whilst utilising the force of each step to drive you forward into the next. With only one thing in mind during design - speed - the NB FC SC Elite v13 is the ultimate contrast to the Fresh Foam X in all departments. 

Delivering over 39% more rebound than previous iterations [Revlite], the FC line is snappy, bouncy and ultra-lightweight - perfect for racing, parkruns and faster training sessions. When combined with the cushioned notes of the 1080 line - ideal for recovery, long-runs and everyday usage - you immediately begin to construct a pretty strong shoe rotation which is fully-equipped to smash your PB’s in no time. 

Gone slightly under the radar this month, though, is the drop of the striking New Balance’s FuelCell SC Elite v3A model which is sure to catch the eye of everyone at any startline, a shoe with an undeniable 'fast' look which we're certain will leaving you running faster, for longer.

Both shoes are now available at Up & Running online and the Fresh Foam X 1080 v13 in stores across the country where you can come in and check them out for yourself. Likewise, why not browse the entire New Balance range on



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