Great color choices, unusual looks, and a design deviation from the norm. Is the Fresh Foam Hierro v5 from New Balance the one you should choose? Let’s look at what makes this shoe what it is.
Size and weight
Normally I wear a US 11, and this shoe runs pretty true to size. The overall show is fairly wide, with the toe box being generously sized. I weighed these at about 13.4 oz per shoe, for my size.
I personally like the way it looks, especially in the “Black with Moonbeam” color scheme. There are actually four colors available: Black with Moonbeam, Lead with Tidepool, Varsity Gold with Neo Classic Blue & Phantom, and Light Aluminium with Blue Ashes & Chromatic Yellow. Try remembering all of those colors! They have fancy names, but they all look really good.
The thing that I like about the Black with Moonbeam color scheme is that it does not look dirty. I’ve taken these on long dusty runs, then sprayed them off with the garden hose, and worn them casually the next day (more about that later). The transition between the upper and midsole looks very cool how the colors “splatter” and transitions between the two.
There is an odd tail on the outsole of the shoe, which makes it look about a size larger than the shoe actually is (more on this later, too). The outsole has a couple of smartly placed forward arrows on the bottom of it. While these are not seen when running, they are a neat visual detail that adds to the overall design of this shoe. I also like how the lace colors match the color scheme of the shoe. When you look at this shoe, you get the feeling that the overall visual design got a lot of attention.
Stack and drop
The New Balance Fresh Foam Hierro v5 has an advertised 8mm drop. The stack is 34mm at the heel and 26mm at the toe.
The main part of the upper is constructed with a two-layer system. The portion underneath of this is a breathable woven nylon material. The top portion of this material is a durable, perforated, TPU-coated synthetic material with a “random repeating” pattern in it. TPU stands for thermoplastic polyurethane, which has elasticity and resists oils, water, and abrasion.
The perforations allow for decent ventilation, while still providing overall design aesthetics. The toe cap is integrated with the same synthetic material as the main portion of the upper.
There are some nice design details here, with the words “Toe Protect” placed over where your middle toes sit. Additionally, the texture of the transition between the Toe Protect mimics the “splash” on the upper and midsole. The New Balance “N” is big on the side of the show, and transitions all the way under the laces.
The heel cup portion is a contrasting color and is a rigid material. The heel pull loop is big but doesn’t get in the way while running. It also has the New Balance “N” and the word “Trail” on it; another nice design detail. The collar is a cushioned soft synthetic material, which transitions to the inner shoe liner.
The midsole is an injected Ethylene-Vinyle Acetate (EVA) using New Balance’s proprietary Fresh Foam technology. This midsole compound is durable and reasonably long-lasting. Fresh Foam is used across a range of New Balance shoes and delivers good rebound and minimal degradation over time. The exposed portion of the Fresh Foam EVA midsole has an abrasion-resistant texture which has held up well. The color scheme on the midsole follows the rest of the shoe well.