Verdict from 4 experts and +100 user reviews

6 reasons to buy

  • The New Balance 870 v4 is lighter than any of its past iterations.
  • Most of the runners agree that it is more flexible compared to past editions.
  • Reviews coming from mild overpronators show that they were pleasantly surprised by the sufficient stability and support.
  • A touch of flexibility in a very stable ride is given huge thumbs up from many runners.
  • The stability is reliable without being intrusive, according to several slight overpronators.
  • The 870 v4 is a versatile shoe that has been proven by many to do very well in different distances and in various speeds.

2 reasons not to buy

  • There are many moderate overpronators who would have wanted more arch support coming from the 870 v4.
  • A few runners with wide feet found the shoe as too narrow for comfort.

Bottom line

The New Balance 870 v4 is a shoe that looks and performs way better than its price tag. It firmly finds a place in the lightweight trainer category that is suited best for distances ranging from 10Ks to marathons. Neutrals and slight overpronators will find the arch support perfect in reining in the slight inward rolling of the foot.

Tip: see the best running shoes.

Good to know

  • New Balance offers a newly-designed and more flexible upper in the 870 v4. More than the enhanced aesthetic value, the upper adapts to the foot better that those with slightly wider or narrower feet can comfortably fit in this shoe.
  • Upper flexibility comes in the form of a seamless construction and the use of only one overlay in the heel. The removal of some of the overlays means more mesh, which also enhances the breathability and adaptability of the shoe.
  • The moderate stability of the shoe improves, through a different set of stability features. Instead of a TPU insert, it now uses a high-density foam in the medial side that extends from the midfoot to the heel. New Balance also made the platform slightly wider to provide a tad more stability when running. Coupled with the full-contact outsole, the new platform gives runners a more confident run.

The fit is average all throughout just as it was in the prior model. Runners with medium foot will likely find the standard heel and forefoot real estate with a lockdown feel in the midfoot quite comfortable. Available width is medium or D and B while sizes are from 6 to 15 for the men’s and 5 to 12 for the women’s.

Blown rubber covers most of the outsole of the 4th release of the 870 for adequate traction and a little cushioning. This outsole material is also used in other New Balance road running shoes like the NB 860 v9.

Blanketing the heel and the lateral part going to the midfoot is the highly-durable N-durance rubber. New Balance places this tough rubber in high-impact areas to limit wear and tear.

Two of the best midsole technologies are found in the 870 v4. Delivering lightweight and responsive cushioning is the innovative REVlite midsole foam. Forming a partnership with this foam is the ABZORB crash pad which is made of sturdy rubber and proprietary foam from New Balance for exceptional shock-absorbing features. Providing a little bit of stability is the new high-density foam just below the arch. As with most firm medial posts, it strengthens the arch to curb overpronation.

A synthetic mesh and synthetic overlays are the most visible features of the upper. They respectively offer excellent breathability and sufficient support and structure. New Balance uses its famed FantomFit technology or the thin wires running from the sole to the upper. It provides a very nice hold and support for runners. An asymmetrical heel counter personalizes fit and helps with the overpronation measures. The interior comfort comes with a healthy dose of anti-microbial properties through the Ortholite sockliner.


How New Balance 870 v4 ranks compared to all other shoes
Bottom 29% road running shoes
All road running shoes
Bottom 33% New Balance running shoes
All New Balance running shoes
Bottom 17% stability running shoes
All stability running shoes


The current trend of New Balance 870 v4.
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Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen

Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.