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Road Running Shoes • August 14, 2019

New Balance 870v5 Performance Review

What You Need To Know

  • Returns after a multi-year hiatus
  • No-nonsense, straightforward ride
  • Moderately light at 9.4 oz. for a 10.5M
  • The Undertaker is not dead (or is he?), beware of chokeslams

Just like the Undertaker rising from the grave, the New Balance 870v5 is back. Except it’s not going to chokeslam you into a casket…

With a multi-year hiatus from a shoe, one may expect a comeback with all the latest and greatest features. Well, one may be wrong. New Balance decided to take a safer route, sticking with a REVlite midsole and pretty standard upper. It actually turned out to be a great decision.

Just like The Undertaker’s signature black eyeliner, the 870v5 retains its own identity as a lightly cushioned stability shoe. This version features a 6 mm drop and the regular width comes in at an admirable 9.4 oz. for a size 10.5.


The Good

I stole these shoes from Thomas because I was so curious about them. Surprisingly, I was able to fit my wide feet into the 10.5 regular width. It was a little cramped, like fitting three people in the back of a car, but not awful and unbearable. Unless it’s the back of a Honda hatchback. That’s not OK.

The upper is your standard engineered knit. It’s got some structure and breathes well. The attached tongue is lightly padded and the heel collar has a bit of padding too.

All of these standard upper features work together to give the foot a stable and comfortable fit.

The majority of the 870v5’s midsole is made up of the ground contact REVlite, a firmer-type foam that’s been around the block in the midsole hussie world. If you’ve run in New Balance in the past few years, you have probably experienced REVlite.

I found it to be slightly cushioned, but still a pretty firm ride. If you’re looking for a more cushioned stability shoe, you’re going to want to go with the more sturdy and heavier 860v9.

My runs ranged from short easy distance up to 10 milers. All of them were pleasant. Even though the shoe felt firm at times, its responsiveness allowed me to seamlessly keep my paces and enjoy each run.

For additional stability, the midsole includes a medial post to keep the foot from overpronating.

The outsole is made up of ground contact EVA with rubber pods. New Balance was able to cut some weight by having the strategically placed rubber in higher contact areas. I’ve had zero slips running and the outsole has minimal wear showing after 50 miles.

I also think the 870v5 is a pretty good-looking shoe. The few areas of bright yellow thrown into my version give it a good pop of color.

Shop New Balance 870v5


new balance 870v5 side1

The Bad

The regular width fits me without crushing my wide feet. That’s not a bad thing for me, but it makes me wonder how the fit would be for someone with a narrow foot. Don’t panic though, it’s not Altra foot-shape wide.

Some people might complain that the REVlite midsole is old news, especially with all the FuelCell hype. Well, you can’t always get what you want (Unless you’re me. I always get what I want!). The v6 may contain something new, but in the meantime REVlite gets the job done.

Shop New Balance 870v5


new balance 870v5 outsole1

New Balance 870v5 Conclusion

As I’ve said, all of the components are pretty standard. When combined, it makes a damn solid shoe. Think of a Toyota Camry. Nothing about it makes you go “WOW!” It doesn’t drive itself. It’s not German. The engine isn’t in the back. But it’s a car that drives great, is comfortable, and doesn’t cost an arm and a leg.

In a world that’s fast becoming $180+ shoes. The 870v5 are $110. Oh yeah, and two words: there’s even a freaking pull tab!

I’ve gotten 50+ miles in the 870v5 as of me writing this review. That’s crazy. There have been shoes where I have literally begged Robbe to let me write the review before reaching 20 miles because of how much I disliked them. 50 miles pre-review is like the ultimate compliment.

You can pick up the New Balance 870v5 for $109.95 at Running Warehouse by using the shop link below.

Shop New Balance 870v5



Have something to say? Leave a Comment

  1. C Comber says:

    I have looked to purchase a pair of these shoes rated as wide fit 2E.
    Are these the shoes you tested or was yours a standard fit?

    1. Robbe Reddinger says:

      Jarrett tested the regular fit, but you should go with the 2E.

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