It’s official: The future is now—and it comes in the form of New Balance’s new Zante Generate, the very first 3D-printed running sneaker.
On Friday, April 15, at 9 a.m. on the dot (seriously, get your mouse ready), the Boston-based activewear brand will release 44 pairs of the Zante Generate, which features a midsole created by using a DuraForm TPU Elastomer—AKA a super fancy laser printer.
This cutting-edge launch is part of a collaboration between New Balance and 3D Systems, an innovative South Carolina-based company that focuses on all things 3D (from printers to surgical devices). The 3D printing comes into play in the midsole; it’s what makes the cool, intricate honeycomb pattern (which provides serious flex and durability to the shoe) possible.
“Our unique position as both a manufacturer and retailer allows us to bring the world’s first 3D-printed running midsole to market,” says New Balance president and CEO Robert DeMartini. “The Zante Generate demonstrates the strength of New Balance design and innovation and will allow consumers to own a piece of running technology history.”
The 44 pairs will be available both online and at the New Balance Experience Store on Boylston Street in Boston, and go for $400 each (nope, not a typo—but each pair does come with a personalized note from the brand). That specific number is a nod to New Balance owner and chairman, Jim Davis, who purchased the company 44 years ago on Patriots’ Day—a holiday commemorating the anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord that’s celebrated in Massachusetts on the same day as the Boston Marathon.
The city is hosting its 120th marathon this Monday, April 18, so expect to be in some tight competition with global pavement-pounding superstars if you’re vying for a pair. And no word yet on how the 44 high-tech sneaks will be divided up between the store and website, but luckily the brand has confirmed that Zante Generate will roll out at various locations later this year.
In other words, no need to fear a Puma x Rihanna Creeper-waitlist situation—phew.
New Balance, 583 Boylston St., Boston, MA 02116, 617-266-1583, newbalance.com
3D sneakers aren’t the only innovative technique on the market these days: This brand has a pair of leggings made from coffee!