New Balance 1500 v5 Intro
New Balance brings the heat with the newest edition of the 1500. The upper was overhauled with a sharp look inspired by their line of track spikes. Besides a different tread pattern, the sole is pretty much the same from last year.
The type of shoe is rare; in that it is a racing shoe with support features. It’s pretty obvious companies do not invest much into this type of shoe because there are so little of them.
Similar types include the Saucony Fastwitch and Brooks Asteria (though this was released in 2016 and has not been updated).
I was a huge fan of the 1500 v4 and I was antsy to try these out.
New Balance 1500 v5 First Impressions
The first thing I noticed unboxing these was the upper. The design really popped and looked as fast as it is crisp. I liked the asymmetrical placement of the logo and the use of the color scheme.
The outsole stood out to me as well; lots of grip!
First time putting these on and running in them they gave a snug fit and fast, firm ride.
New Balance 1500 v5 Sole Unit
The mid sole utilizes REVlite foam. It’s incredibly firm to the touch – both in my hands and on my feet. New Balance’s claim to fame is that this is light weight, but is just as durable as a heavy duty trainer.
As this is a support shoe, the medial side has denser foam in the medial side There is also a TPU shank in the mid-foot called the “T beam”. These support attributes aren’t overbearing. They gave a Goldilocks “just right” feel.
The outsole has an aggressive pattern of lugs with the most grip in a road running shoe I’ve seen. I liked the placement of the lugs with separation down the middle and different patterns.
The ride was VERY firm. The 6mm drop allowed me to hit the pavement on my forefoot and lift off on the balls of my feet.
I landed very close to the ground, but this is where the REVlite shined; absorbing shock exceptionally well and moving fast.
New Balance 1500 v5 Upper Unit
The upper has a sleek design but is it functional? For the most part, yes.
The material is a paper thin synthetic mesh called FantomFit. It wrapped to my foot like a glove. It feels much softer in this version than the V4. The semi attached paper thin tongue gives that bootie construction that I love ever so much.
The tongue extends higher and rests further up my ankle with this edition. It eliminated any worry I might have with the laces cutting into my feet.
There is minimal but adequate reinforcement in the heel. It grasped the rear nicely and caused no slippage.
The toe box is much snugger with this version. Too little wiggle room! My toes blistered thanks to this.
I had to keep in mind that this IS a racing shoe so it will certainly be snugger than a daily trainer. Even putting this into consideration, It had too little wiggle room and had me feeling let down in this area.
Go half a size up if you can.
New Balance 1500 v5 Conclusion
Once again, New Balance claims this shoe can go up to a marathon. I would not go past a half marathon in these. They have ample support, but I could feel my body break down in my longer double digit runs.
I tested these while building my mileage back up after my spring racing season. I liked the firm ride, but my body was spent from an aggressive training. It was hard to enjoy them at first.
Toward the end of testing, my body returned to normal and the shoes shined. Track workouts felt great and tempo runs with my running club were effortless.
Track night in the heat is always a gamble for me, but they helped me go fast and not feel completely winded.
I loved the grip of the outsole both on the road and on the track. The 6mm drop allowed me to attack hills without killing my calves in the process. The subtle support combated against my over pronating perfectly.
I was a little disappointed with the blisters I got from the snugger fit of the toe box and it’s what stopped me from giving this shoe a perfect rating.
Is it a game changer? No, but you really need to either go half a size up or take advantage of New Balance’s attention to the wide footed runner.
Overall, it was still a blast to run in and I look forward to these being the fast shoe in my lineup.
We purchased a pair of New Balance 1500 v5 from runningwarehouse using our own money. This did not influence the outcome of this review, written after running more than 50 miles in them.