New Balance created the Made 990 in 1982, a style the brand is touting as the first athletic sneaker to break the $100 barrier. And to celebrate the heritage model, it’s releasing 1,500 pairs of a “1982” Made 990v4 colorway only at pop-up locations around the world.
When it was first released, it was a technical running sneaker sold in a nondescript shade of gray with an upper made of pigskin and mesh. According to New Balance, the Made 990 recorded 10 times its projected sales within the first six months. In the next 36 years, New Balance produced millions of pairs from its U.S. manufacturing facilities, pushing the sneaker well beyond its originally intended use and into the lifestyle environment.
The 990 enjoyed updates in 1998, 2012 and 2016, the latest silhouette, which included a modernized aesthetic and technical improvements as the 990v4.
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New Balance will celebrate that history on April 14 by combining two of the shoe’s classic colorways — gray and navy — in one exclusive “1982” look. The upper is crafted in the traditional gray pig suede and mesh, and features navy accents on the tongue logo, behind the N branding on the upper, heel accents and outsole. It also boasts embroidered “EST. 1982” in navy on the foxing.
New Balance will release the 990v4 “1982” for the original $100 retail price at pop-up locations worldwide, including seven locations in the U.S. (New Balance New York City, Foot Locker in Atlanta, Shoe Palace in Palo Alto, Calif., Kicks USA in Philadelphia, New Balance San Francisco, YCMC in Washington, D.C., and YCMC in Windsor Mill, Md.).
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