Adidas sure knows how to excite discriminating sneakerheads with its basketball shoes that combine the latest in innovation, technology and style. In 2015, it released the Adidas Futurecraft 3D shoe – as the name suggests, it was the company’s first shoe printed in 3D. Needless to say, these shoes received a lot of hype when they were first unveiled to the public. Despite being a limited-edition selection with a high price tag to match, the Adidas Futurecraft 3D shoes flew off the shelves – quite fast.
The astounding success of the Futurecraft 3D has kept shoe pundits and fans guessing on what Adidas would come up with next. And it didn’t take too long for the German shoe company to launch what they had been experimenting for long together with Carbon, a tech company based from Silicon Valley.
And just recently, Adidas finally bore the fruits of their labor with the second release of the Adidas Futurecraft 4D silhouette, which could be well tagged as the future of performance sneakers. Yes, second release, if you do not know it yet – the first Adidas Futurecraft 4D was launched back in April 2017, also in limited numbers.
Adidas Futurecraft 4D is in fact one of the most highly anticipated sneakers of 2018, thus far. And the anticipation was further compounded by strong hints of legal issues that could stall its scheduled launch on January 18, 2018 at first exclusively at selected retailers in New York City – Kith, Packer and Sneakersnstuff. There were speculations that Under Armour, which rolled off 3D-printed sneakers back in 2017 which closely resembled the Futurecraft 4D, was planning to file a lawsuit against Adidas over the design. The digital re-release of these shoes took place on February 5 to 7 (via the Adidas app), while the re-release of the shoe at Adidas’ NYC flagship stores went live on February 10.
Carbon, Adidas’ partner in creating the Futurecraft 4D, employed a process called Digital Light Synthesis (DLS) to create the shoe’s unique lattice design on the midsole, where in ultraviolet light was used to shape a programmable liquid polymer resin, then it was set under heat to strengthen it.
With its unique design, material and construction, the midsole can provide different degrees of cushioning and stability which rely only on a single element.
Adidas itself revealed that it was “officially departing from 3D printing” now that it had found a new method of production, the DLS that is, which the company believed was faster, was more efficient, would provide improved surface quality and allow for a wider range of color options. Who would have thought that making shoes using light was improbable?
Novel and radical things aside, the upper of the Adidas Futurecraft 4D is made from the more familiar PrimeKnit material which consists of perforations that allow your feet to feel cool, well-ventilated and dry. The outsole is made from Continental rubber which you may have also seen on the previous Adidas sneakers.
The latticed midsole gives your gait a springy feeling, and after it’s been squeezed down it shifts back into normal shape. The springy feeling of the shoes translates to better energy returns to your feet, just like in the case Adidas UltraBoost shoes.
Have you purchased these out-of-this-world shoes yet? If you have, do you think that the Adidas Futruecraft 4D is really the future for basketball sneakers? Please post your thoughts on the comments section below.
Adidas Futurecraft 4D “Ash Green”
Release date: January 18, 2018 (New York City)
Color: Ash Green