Why…Why do I always get the press releases on automotive shoes? It never fails! First it was, of all things, the Nike meant to look like a DeLorean, complete with the taillight-colored sole. Then it was the Ferrari shoe, with the same red and yellow trim that practically every Ferrari since the Testarossa was required to be painted. Now, Porsche Design has a new running shoe called the Bounce S4. To Porsche Design’s credit, at least they make their own shoes, instead of farming it out like the other two did, but even reading the marketing blurbs make me feel slightly ill. “This running shoe blends luxury with ultra-lightweight performance. Exclusive BOUNCE™ technology, featuring a carbon baseplate, provides serious cushioning, with a smooth flexing suspension system that transfers vertical impact into forward propulsion. An engineered, futuristic upper with allover seamless construction delivers even flex and a glove-like fit.” After fitting my frame inside a Boxter, “a glove-like fit” must be referencing the latex gloves a proctologist uses.
On the plus side for a running shoe, Porsche’s experience with air cooling should pay off in spades, by keeping your feet nice and cool in most climates. What isn’t mentioned is that if your gait is anything less than spot-on-perfect that you’ll end up losing traction and ending up in the grass for no apparent reason. And in reality, the Bounce S4 is like a more common New Balance that is not only significantly cheaper (maybe $100 for the NB’s while the Porsches cost $550 and are limited to 1000 pairs worldwide), but do just about the same thing. Sounds kind of like the VW Beetle.