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New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 review

8 expert score
0 user's score
As editorial policy, we do not accept free samples. We purchased this pair at Running Warehouse with our own money.
Review written on 20th January by Denny Krahe Running Coach and Podcast Host.
16 other reviews

New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 Verdict

The New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 is a shoe that can do pretty much anything on the roads. Short and fast? Check. Long and easy? Yep. Daily trainer? Absolutely. One pair of shoes that can do everything is definitely my kind of shoe!

The pros

  • Light Weight
  • Comfortable Upper
  • Smooth Ride
  • Low Drop

The cons

  • Narrow Forefoot


Rating breakdown

Comfort
9.0
Build quality
9.0
Upper
9.0
Sole unit
9.0
Landing
9.0
Transition
9.0
Toe-off
9.0
Traction
9.0
Durability
9.0
Value / Price
9.0

Facts / Specs

Model
Fresh Foam X Tempo v2
Previous model
Weight
9.1 oz (258 g)
MSRP
$120.00

Heel
mm.
Toe
mm.
Heel drop
6 mm.
Carbon plate
No plate

Size/Fit

Sizing
True to size
Heel fit
Normal
Midfoot fit
Normal
Toebox fit
Tight

Cushioning & ride

Type of cushioning
Balanced
Amount of cushioning
Medium cushioning
Stability
Not particularly stable
Flexibility
Medium

Usage

Racing  
Speedwork  
Daily training  
Long distance racing  
Ultra distance racing

Who should buy the New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 ?

The New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 is a great shoe for just about any road runner. Specifically, the runners that will love this shoe are those looking for a light weight shoe with a little bit of cushion, but not an excessive amount, between their feet and the road.

Who should not buy the New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 ?

The New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 is not a good option for runners with a wide foot, as this shoe is definitely a bit tight in the toe box (more on that shortly). It’s also a poor choice for runners that prefer a lot of cushioning in their road shoes.

New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 Introduction

Picture of New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2

The New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 is a good option for runners that like a simple shoe. No fancy carbon plates or other bells and whistles. It’s a great middle-of-the-road option on just about every front: cushion, heel drop, and price point.

New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 First Impressions

Picture of New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2

My first impression of the New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 was mostly positive. I am the kind of runner that prefers the least amount of shoe possible, and this shoe didn’t scare me due to massive amounts of cushioning or upper construction. It has more cushion than a lot of minimal shoes, but that’s ok with me.

The New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 is a light shoe, and that was noticeable both in hand and the first time I put the shoe on my foot.

My only concern out of the box was that these shoes felt pretty narrow to me. Now, to be fair, I’m more of a foot-shaped forefoot kind of guy. I’m glad I got a wide of these NBs, but even with the wides a little more space in the forefoot/toe box would have been appreciated.

New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 Upper

Picture of New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2

The New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 features a knit upper that really is quite comfortable. The upper fits snuggly around the foot, but is thin and flexes quite well so that it isn’t restrictive or uncomfortable.

The upper is seamless, which is great for minimizing hot spots or rubbing. The tongue of the shoe is attached to the sole with some elastic on each side of the tongue. Those two seams are the only areas where I could imagine any issues with friction, but I’ve not experienced any issues myself. In my experience, the upper of the shoe ticks pretty much every box.

Picture of New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2

The heel cup of the New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 is slightly reinforced, just enough to maintain its integrity and keep the heel secure while running.

Honestly, there isn’t much to complain about with the upper of the New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2. It’s light. It breathes well. It’s comfortable.

Works for me.

New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 Sole Unit

Picture of New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2

I was quite pleased with the sole unit of the New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2.

The bulk of the sole unit is composed of New Balance’s Fresh Foam X midsole technology, which doesn’t seem to be markedly different than the fancy foam technology that just about every shoe seems to claim is unique.

It’s soft but still provides enough support to the foot.

There is enough cushioning for the wearer to feel protected from various debris on the ground, but not so much that all ground feel is lost. And the Fresh Foam X bounces back relatively quickly, as I’ve noticed no issues with foam compression after wearing these shoes for my runs on several consecutive days.

Picture of New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2

The outer sole definitely does its job well. The rubber outsole is definitely durable, showing virtually no sign of wear after more than 200 miles of road running. And I’ve had zero issues with traction while wearing this shoe, save for a couple of instances of iced-over sidewalks. Outside of a couple of icy days, the New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 has been great for running up and down hills, even in wet conditions.

Overall, the upper and the midsole work quite well together. The ride of the New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 is as smooth as I’ve had in a pair of shoes in a while, to the point where I don’t think about these shoes at all while I’m wearing them.

And for me, that’s about as much as I could ask of a pair of running shoes.

New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 Conclusions

Picture of New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2

On the whole, the New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 is a really good shoe. If I’m honest, I probably liked this shoe more than I expected I would.

My only issue with the New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 is that it’s a narrower shoe than I’m used to. I haven’t had any issues with the shoe or my feet due to the narrower toe box/snugger feel, so I’m not even sure I really have an issue. This shoe has worked well for me, and it will continue to be my daily trainer for at least another few hundred miles.

Comfortable. Durable. No slipping, even on wet hills.

For a simple shoe that won’t break the bank, I’m not sure you could do much better than the New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2!

How does the Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 compare?

Nike Winflo 9
New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2
Saucony Axon 2
Expert score
8
8
10
User score
Retail price
US$99.95
US$119.95
US$100
Weight
10 oz
9.1 oz
9.6 oz
Heel Drop
10 mm
6 mm
4 mm
Recommended for
Daily training
Racing, speedwork, daily training, long distance racing
Daily training
Cushioning type
balanced/plush
balanced
responsive/balanced
Cushioning amount
Highly cushioned
Medium cushioning
Highly cushioned
Flexibility
flexible
medium
rigid
Stability
some stability
not particularly stable
not particularly stable
Sizing
true to size
true to size
true to size

Why you can trust us

As editorial policy, we do not accept free samples from companies.
We purchased this pair of New Balance at Running Warehouse  with our own money.

This page contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. Read more about our policy.
Lowest price:

$49

New Balance Fresh Foam X Tempo v2 price comparison

Reviewed by Denny

This review was written by Denny Krahe on 20th January.
Denny Krahe is a running coach and a podcast host living in Central Florida. He is working on running a marathon in every state in the US; 5 down, 45 to go!

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Lowest price:
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