A few weeks ago, adidas announced its collaboration with Universal Pictures for the release of the adidas X 007 collection. The collection features four reimagined adidas Ultraboost sneakers. Each of the sneakers from the pack is themed after something from the latest, No Time to Die film. Featured in the collection is the silhouette based on the classic 007 looks, the Ultraboost 20 X James Bond Black Tuxedo.
With the film being delayed by over 18 months as a result of the pandemic, many tie-in marketing campaigns were delayed as well. The sneaker collaboration was no different. This is also the reason why the Ultraboost 20 was used for three of the pieces, instead of the newer Ultraboost 21.
Be that as it may, Bond is back.
Ultraboost 20 X James Bond Design and Build
At first glance, the sneaker looks like the standard Ultraboost 20. It has also the same Primeknit textile upper surrounded by the cage enclosure. Additionally, it includes the 3D Heel Frame and the well-known Boost midsole.
However, upon closer inspection, you’ll start to pick up all the design elements, which reflect a scene from the film. The design of the sneaker is based on James Bond’s famous black tuxedo. Added to this, however, is an action scene from No Time to Die, which is set in Cuba.
The first of the notable graphic inclusions from the film is the classic gun barrel element. This is featured on the tongue. Next is the 007 logo on the heel. This graphic has been embossed in black, right below the collar. Then, there are the lace tips in a copper colour, which also features the 007 text.
Tying the sneakers to the Cuba scene is the insole. These feature the Cuban background in the form of a painting. The painting is influenced by the sunset, palm trees, birds, drinks and music from the island. The painting is in contrast to the rest of the sneaker, featured in an all-over black upper and midsole, with the insole featuring a pop of colour.
In addition to the sneakers, the box itself is designed with the film in mind. Again, it features the famous gun barrel, which is cut out on the cover, with the “No Time to Die” text showcased in the middle of it. It’s also not a standard box, as it slides out instead of the conventional lid opening.
Overall, the design of the Ultraboost 20 X James Bond Black Tuxedo is very minimalistic. The tie-in elements are featured in the detailing. This is reflective of the character’s look, elegant yet simple.
The sneakers feature all the comforts of the original. This includes the sockfit approach from the Primeknit textile upper, which hugs the foot. It moves as you move, making it easy to change direction and take you through your stride.
As with the original, most of the comfort is derived from the Boost midsole. It is responsive, thanks to its bouncy nature, absorbing impact while also releasing energy with each step.
The Continental rubber outsole grips the surface, so no matter the terrain, you’re left with a secure feeling underfoot.
Overall, it is adaptive, cushioned and comfortable. You can keep wearing it for hours without feeling too much pressure around your foot while offering enough return in each stride.
Ultraboost 20 X James Bond Performance and Quality
The Ultraboost 20 X James Bond Black Tuxedo sneaker is a freshly-designed version of the original. This means that it offers all the performance and quality you’d expect.
I’ll admit, I didn’t hit the streets for my conventional run with these beauties. Instead, I’d wear one of these with one of the originals to test whether there was any notable difference between the two. I also took it for a fast walk on the treadmill, but nothing more. I would prefer to keep these sneakers as the collectables they are.
If you are buying these to hit the streets or the treadmill for a run, you can read the review of the Ultraboost 20 here. You’ll find all the details you need to make your decision.
The only difference in build quality would be the additional branding items from the adidas X 007 collection. This includes the gun barrel on the tongue, the embossed text on the heel and the lace tips. They feel fairly solid in place, with no hints of peeling, even after a few wears. Each of these elements feels as if they’re for part of the build and not an afterthought. This is great.
Final Thoughts on the Ultraboost 20 X James Bond Black Tuxedo
The adidas Ultraboost 20 X James Bond Black Tuxedo is a great-looking sneaker. It already was with its base design. The tie-in marketing components for the No Time to Die film elevate this to the next level. I like that the adidas design team has not gone overboard with the collaboration, adding the additional elements in the smaller details. The touch of flair on the insole really makes it stand out, in contrast to the all-over black colourway on the outer elements. The rest of the adidas X 007 sneakers are equally great in the collaboration.
The sneakers cost the same as the originals, at R3,499, which is also a great bonus for anyone looking to get their hands on a pair. It’s available exclusively online at adidas.co.za.
Ultraboost 20 X James Bond Black Tuxedo
- Tie-In James Bond design
- No over-the-top elements
- Still as comfortable as the original
- Previous-generation Ultraboost