We spent 7.5 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what runners think:

5 reasons to buy

  • The New Balance Fresh Foam Cruz Protect Pack was lauded for being true to size.
  • The water-resistant construction of the upper unit received praise for being efficient.
  • A runner observed that the material on the upper maintained a warm environment during the rainy season.
  • Some consumers welcomed the subdued and near-monochromatic color schemes.
  • The midsole felt suitably comfortable, according to several reviewers.

2 reasons not to buy

  • A purchaser complained that the New Balance Fresh Foam Cruz Protect Pack had a tight fit and that sizing up didn’t remedy the problem.
  • A tester felt that the underfoot cushioning system felt stiff and looked cheap, likening the foam unit to Styrofoam.

Bottom line

The New Balance Fresh Foam Cruz Protect Pack received mostly positive reviews from those who have tried it. They liked this road shoe’s muted colorways, the standard sizing scheme, the water-resistant upper and the apparently comfortable midsole. But some neutral runners were taken aback by an inconsistency in width and cushioning capability.


Base model: New Balance Fresh Foam Cruz
Terrain: Road
Arch support: Neutral
Weight: Men: 8.8oz | Women: 7.6oz
Heel to toe drop: Men: 8mm | Women: 8mm
Pronation: Neutral Pronation
Arch type: High arch
Use: Jogging
Material: Vegan
Strike Pattern: Midfoot strike
Distance: Daily running | Marathon
Brand: New Balance
Type: Low drop
Width: Men: Normal | Women: Normal
Price: $100
Special editions: 5 special editions
Small True to size Large
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Expert Reviews

Experts are runners, who post reviews at youtube, directly at RunRepeat or at their own websites. Each expert is categorized from level 1 to level 5 based on expertise. See stats on expert reviews and how we calculate scores here.

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88 / 100 based on 1 expert reviews

  • 88 / 100 | The Straits Times | | Level 3 expert

    The New Balance Foam Cruz Protect Pack is a great pair of running shoes and trendy sneakers rolled into one, especially so when you are visiting countries in winter.

  • First look | chuhaha

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  • The New Balance Fresh Foam Cruz Protect Pack is designed for those who have neutral pronation. It has a contemporary outline that caters to casual shoe enthusiasts and fashion-forward consumers. Like the original Fresh Foam Cruz, this one features a synthetic saddle that stitched onto the sides, but unlike the base model, the material of the sidewalls is also placed in the forefoot as a protective rand.
  • Fresh Foam is a single-piece foam that runs the entire length of this running shoe. It aims to carry the foot and provide a responsive ride. Blown rubber covers the midsole and protects it from wear and tear.

The Protect Pack of the New Balance Fresh Foam Cruz was designed to be true to size. It adheres to the preferences of consumers regarding length. The available width for the women’s version is B – Medium. The men’s iteration has the D – Medium width profile. The semi-curved shape of this running shoe mimics the natural curvature of the human foot.

The outsole unit of the New Balance Fresh Foam Cruz Protect Pack utilizes blown rubber. This material was designed to be sturdy and traction-ready. Its job is to protect the rest of the sole unit from abrasion and wear. It also has a soft and flexible nature, so it can potentially add more bounce to each step.

Hexagonal patterns pockmark the external part of the platform. These outlines encourage flexibility and natural movement.

Fresh Foam is a full-length cushioning unit that’s devised by New Balance for many of its shoes. It’s a one-piece foam that aims to give a smooth and well-supported ride.

The upper unit of the New Balance Fresh Foam Cruz Protect Pack features a water-resistant mesh. Its purpose is to keep the foot dry, especially in wet conditions.

A cleatie construction allows the wearer to feel a second-skin-like fit that’s stretchy and conformable. A tongue unit is still present, but it’s stitched directly to the collar to maintain a single-piece composition.

A synthetic saddle is stitched onto the medial and lateral sides. It bolsters the structure of the façade and helps in keeping the foot in place.

The same material used for the midfoot saddle is sewn on the forefoot section. It acts as a shield against surfaces or any elements that may try and cause discomfort to the toes.

At the back of the collar is a pull tab that helps the runner in wearing and removing the shoe.