When I woke up this morning, I didn't imagine I'd spend part of my day inside a massive shipping container on a parking lot right under the Brooklyn Bridge. But that's exactly what happened earlier today. The occasion? Adidas invited members of the media to an event where it showcased its latest running shoe, the AM4NYC, a New York City-inspired silhouette that was designed using sensor data and feedback from local runners. Not just that, but the sneaker was actually made at the company's robot-staffed Speedfactory in Atlanta, an automated assembly line that combines craftsmanship with speed to create custom footwear.
For the Adidas Made For New York City, the company worked with runners around the Big Apple to figure out what would make the perfect shoe for them. Stability and more reinforcement in the forefoot was a big deal for people running in NYC, Adidas said, so it needed to design a Primeknit upper that was tight enough to make it feel stable. The AM4NYC also has a small torsion bar on the bottom of it that locks the midsole together, which will give runners more control when they turn. Meanwhile, the Boost material (used on Yeezy shoes, as well) offers enough cushion and energy bounce to make your runs as comfortable as possible.
With custom-made models such as the AM4NYC and AM4LDN (London), Adidas says it can produce great results because it tracks runners' data points and body movement to create the ideal shoe based on an individual and their surroundings. During my demo, for instance, I went through a station where I had both of my feet scanned by sensors that could measure my left and right foot's exact length and width. I then had to run on a treadmill for a minute, where my running stance was being monitored by another set of body-measuring sensors. The idea is that, in the future, Adidas could launch these types of experiences at its retail stores and bring customized shoes to the masses.
Until that happens, you can get the AM4NYC on April 26th at Adidas' stores in New York City as well as the company's site for $200. Additionally, the sportswear giant says it will also be selling new versions of its AM4LDN and AM4PAR (Paris) city-inspired sneakers that same day. You'll have to act fast if you want any of them, though, as they're all likely to sell out quickly.