New Balance's XC-72 is all Revved Up for 2021's Best Sneaker List

New Balance runners have always had a timeless appeal to them and lately, they have been releasing future great classics. It seems new sneakers with a retro style have an appeal with sneakers like the 327and 57/40 blazing the way. Also, New Balance seems to have a knack for picking the right partner for the right collaboration. Now it looks like they are poised to make waves again with the coming of the XC-72 with Casablanca calling dibs on its initial debut.

When the 327 was launched last year, it went on to became a hit and ended up in the Top 10 lists of many sneakerheads. Just like the 327, the XC-72 was born from the minds of designer Charlotte Lee and Casablanca’s creative director Charaf Tajer. It’s hard not to make a comparison between the XC-72 and its predecessor since both were inspired by retro running shoes with extreme shapes that gives off a modern, futuristic vibe to them.

But the XC-72 is a whole new sneaker by itself. Just check out the outsole. A combination of 3 different, distinct New Balance models (XC15, 375 and 620) make up the outsole of the XC-72. The distinctive split sole unit features a stripe in the middle, another side of the outsole features a rugged texture resembling race tyres and on the opposite side it has circular nubs that are similar to the 327. The aggressive thread patterns extend up to the toe and gives you a feeling this sneaker might just tear up some roads!

The outsole of New Balance XC-72- CROSSOVER

Upon closer inspection, the race car vibes that oozes off the XC-72 is undeniable. The sharp, aggressive shape gives off a retro-futuristic look that harkens back to the days of wedge sport cars of the late 1970s. The boxy cut of the toe box and the design of the heel stabilizer are clear indicators.

In fact, part of XC-72’s design inspiration comes from international auto racing events such as Formula One and Grand Prix. Look at the colorway of their shoe and you will be instantly reminded of a Ferrari.

Casablanca x New Balance XC-72 Collaboration - CROSSOVER

But Casablanca aren’t the only ones with the hot colorways. The inline colorways of New Balance’s new silhouette are exciting and fresh as well. Here’s a preview of some of the releases in the next few months that are bound to be a future classic hit and possibly one of the best sneakers to release this year:

New Balance XC72BB2 - CROSSOVER


Set to be released soon, this is a multi-colored approach with hues of pastel yellow, pink, brown, green, blue and different shades of grey and black on its numerous suede panels. Drawing inspiration from retrofuturism art from the 70s, this colorway is definitely a stand out.

New Balance XC72AA1 - CROSSOVER


Many have claimed that New Balance makes the best grey shoes and this pair is no exception. Coming in shades of grey, black and some hints of silver, these combination of colors make up a new icon in New Balance’s rich history of heritage greys.

New Balance XC72BC3 - CROSSOVER


Remember that these shoes were inspired by the XC15, 375 and 620 so it comes as no surprise that the colors on this pair would comprise the iconic colorways of the respective models. The result is a colorway that pays homage to the past while paving the way for a modern, vibrant one.

So these are the just some of the initial colorways that would be releasing soon. With the 70s making a comeback, the XC-72 is an amazing blend of retro and modern tooling. The funky colorblocking and aggressive aesthetic are perfect for those who want to express themselves and stand out. We will be the first to say it, retro-futurism is here to stay so don’t be left behind, the race’s just getting started.

Author: Aaron Lee