Verdict from 2 experts and 100+ user reviews

11 reasons to buy

  • The Nike Air Max 2017 solidifies the line’s tradition of mixing performance and lifestyle with its cool, sophisticated looks and solid performance on track.
  • It is extremely comfortable, according to several reviewers.
  • It comes in different color combinations.
  • The shoe has sufficient reflectivity for low-visibility running.
  • A few runners noted that it has better quality than the 2016 edition.
  • The cushioning absorbs shock well, based on the experience of several users.
  • It is great for all day wear, as a running shoe or as a casual footwear.
  • More than a few mentioned that is several times better than the past model.
  • The 2017 version of the Air Max showed little sign of wear after being extensively used on the road, as noticed by a small number of runners.
  • Some avid fans of the series agreed that the quality and construction of the latest version of the Air Max are a notch better than the predecessor.
  • It works well as a gym shoe, according to some reviewers.

6 reasons not to buy

  • The $190 price tag is too tough to swallow.
  • It is a bit smaller than before.
  • It is also slightly narrower than the 2016 version.
  • The new tongue, which is attached, caused a little too much snugness or tightness even if the laces are adjusted, based on the reviews of several runners.
  • A small number of runners found the cushioning too hard.
  • Some very loyal fans of the Air Max felt that the air bag design is long overdue for a change as it could really improve the line’s performance as a running shoe.

Bottom line

Nike is steadfast in its aim of blending performance and lifestyle with every release of the Air Max series. The 2017 Nike Air Max is no different as it thrives on its ability to match superior comfort, adequate arch support, and insane looks. Although the price won’t allow everyone to own a pair, this should be one of those shoes that people will be itching to get their hands on.

Tip: see the best running shoes.

Good to know

  • Nike made several changes in the flagship model of the Air Max series. In the 2017 Nike Air Max, the most visible change is the removal of the Flywire cables. The loop-to-the-laces technology is replaced with a more traditional structure.
  • By removing the Flywire cords, Nike made some changes in the heel and midfoot to provide excellent fit and support. This shoe offers a new molded foam in the said areas. In lieu of the cords, the foam provides adequate hold, support, and a more comfortable feel.
  • Nike sculpted the Cushlon foam in the midsole to provide better flexibility. As the Air Max unit is quite thick, the flexibility of the midsole foam gives it a little more balance and spring.

The outsole of this Nike running shoe is basically that of the earlier version. It uses the plastic-like construction with countless small nubs placed all over the underfoot. The nubs of the Waffle design provide the much-needed traction from an outsole of this type. There are also a couple of flex grooves in the forefoot for flexibility.

The biggest attraction in the midsole and basically the entire shoe is the full-length Air Max cushioning. It is made of Cushlon foam together with Nike’s innovative gas technology for a more bouncy and shock-absorbing combination. On top of the Air Max cushioning is the standard Cushlon foam for more responsiveness and durability.

The new Flymesh upper is needed to provide more structure as the 2017 Nike Air Max does away with the reliable Flywire cables. It is very breathable and has the right combination of flexibility and firmness. Besides the molded foam in the heel and midfoot for a foot-hugging support, there is also a partial inner sleeve that wraps the foot like a glove. Nike uses reflective elements in the upper for low-visibility running.


How Nike Air Max 2017 ranks compared to all other shoes
Bottom 21% road running shoes
All road running shoes
Bottom 22% Nike running shoes
All Nike running shoes
Bottom 22% neutral running shoes
All neutral running shoes


The current trend of Nike Air Max 2017.
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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.