Air Max 97

Another legendary silhouette in the Nike Air Max line, the Nike Air Max 97. The silhouette, which first hit stores in the fall of 1997 was designed by Christian Tresser and stood out for two things in particular.


First was its atypical look. Supposedly, the sneakers were inspired by Japanese bullet trains (for example, the Nike Air Max 97 Silver Bullet), but the truth is somewhere else. One of designer Tresser's favorite activities was mountain biking. He drew inspiration from the bike's design that was usually done in silver or titanium, which is why he used the not-so-typical color on the original metallic silver upper. And as mountain bikes are, of course, ridden outdoors, he added a few key elements to the Nike Air Max 97 as well. The upper, oddly divided into different layers, is meant to symbolize ripples in a puddle after a raindrop hits it.

The second, very important thing then, was the breakthrough in the use of the "Air Unit". The bubble was now not just under the heel (or heel and toe as in the Air Max 95 or 96), but it was on the entire length of the sole. This was very successful and we can still see the use of this feature on many of Nike's models today. 

This sneaker was a bit unlucky, as it was on the market for an uncharacteristically short period of time. The spring of 1998 meant not only warming up after winter, but also the arrival of the new Nike Air Max 98 silhouette, so the Air Max 97 was on shelves for less than a year.

However, it literally made history in some places around the world. Italy is a prime example. In the land of fashion, the Nike Air Max 97 was an absolute essential and an irreplaceable sneaker. And Nike payed attention releasing several Italy-exclusive models (Nike Air Max 97 Lux/Made in Italy). 

The short period before the Nike Air Max 97's departure didn't prevent the creation of a staggering number of colorways. For example, the classic Nike Air Max 97 White or the Nike Air Max 97 Black. Do you already know which Air Max 97 you're getting?





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