As Nike celebrates 30 years of the Air Max 90 throughout 2020 — from recrafting the iconic silhouette to introducing FlyEase into the Air Max 90 family — the Air Max 2090 is the company’s current shoe of the future.

Leveraging the same DNA that made the Air Max 90 so iconic and future-forward 30 years ago, the Air Max 2090 is designed to illustrate what the future holds. 

With the Air Max 2090 launch colorways pulling inspiration from the future of travel, the coloring on the front and the back of the shoe are meant to convey headlights and taillights.

The Air Max 2090 tread design gets an updated pattern for modern performance. To highlight the importance of structure, the most supportive materials are emphasized in black, while the lighter support areas that comprise the Air Max 2090 are opaque. Employing colors typically seen in new electric cars, the Air Max 2090 is a representation of what Nike designers think cars will look like in 2090. 

The Air Max 90’s mudguard, cassette and heel logo design remain untouched in the Air Max 2090 to underscore the three key elements that make the Air Max 90 unique. Other than these design elements, Nike designers were determined to reimagine every other component of the shoe to bring it into the future.

What’s new in the Air Max 2090:

  • Color Blocking: Color blocking was instrumental in the development of the original Air Max 90, with darker colors underscoring the strength in the shoe’s support structure. In that same vein, the 2090 relays this through levels of opacity — the most supportive materials are 100 percent opaque, and the least supportive (and lighter weight) materials are see-through.
  • Air Unit: With the aim of all-day comfort, the Air Max 2090 employs a larger Air unit than its originator, with a 200 percent larger window than traditional side-visibility Air units seen 30 years ago. 
  • Cropped Swoosh: The iconic Nike Swoosh was first cropped below on the Air Max 90, and the Swoosh of Air Max 2090 — though updated — follows the same design ethos. 
  • Flexibility: Echoing the Air Max 90’s waffle outsole, the Air Max 2090 also employs distinct grooves for flexibility and takes original tread lines and updates the pattern for performance in 2020. 

What remains the same:

  • Air Max 90 Mudguard: One of the three key elements voted upon by Air Max 90 wearers, the Air Max 2090 mudguard remains untouched from the original.
  • Air Max 90 Cassette: This design element, which surrounds and highlights the Air unit, is iconically featured in the shoe’s original design and was a must-keep element in the Air Max 2090
  • Air Max 90 Heel Logo: The classic heel logo first employed by the Air Max 90 is reflected in the Air Max 2090 update — look closely and you can see the new “Air” logo.

The Air Max 2090 launch colorways are, in part, inspired by the future of transportation — an ode to the original Air Max 90’s inspiration drawing from Italian sports cars.

The Nike Air Max 2090 releases globally this spring. 

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