Cole Haan ZeroGrand Shoe Release
It’s finally here. Another Cole Haan – Nike inspired mashup, also known as the Cole Haan ZeroGrand. No more of the Nike LunarGrand soles that initially inspired the first hybrid mixup of dress shoes and sneakers. Instead this next go around is about utilizing the Nike Free sole. What’s the difference? Quite a bit actually.
One interesting notion that I still find intriguing is that Nike and Cole Haan are still collaborating, even after Nike sold off the Cole Haan business unit to Apax Partners in 2012 for $570 million. Though Nike mentioned there would be a transition period, its continued to drag on into a second year and perhaps longer it seems now that the newly designed ZeroGrand’s are out. I forsee many collaborations continuing to be produced into the future.
So what’s so special about the new ZeroGrand? Well its the lightest shoe Cole Haan has ever produced coming out at a featherweight of 290 grams. Definitely no comparison on the weight scale when brought up with other dress shoes its supposed to compete with. Built on construction platform known as the Grand. OS, Cole Haan aimed at a few features with the new line. This being greater flexibility throughout, more cushion support (EVA technology kicking in), and overall lightness as mentioned above. The Nike Free sole will definitely make an impact within those features with the increased flexibility in the sole, obvious from the new advertised photos released by Cole Haan.
“The outstanding thing about ZeroGrand is the fact that it is highly engineered, yet beautifully designed and crafted,” David Maddocks, Chief Marketing Officer of Cole Haan, said. “We compromised nothing. It’s stealth. It’s sleek. It’s the perfect complement to a modern, slim-cut suit—in a way that says, I mean business, but not business as usual.”
I would have to agree with Mr. Maddocks that it is definitely a beautifully designed shoe and very modern. These shoes of course are supposed to be a walking statement in trying to be comfortably dressy. Older generations and most businessmen will probably not find this shoe very professional, but as Cole Haan mentions in their target marketing this shoe is aimed at the modern, young guy. A very distinct group who will hopefully pick up on the line. Styles and trends have changed dramatically these days, and I would say in the direction of being comfort-based for shoes. The Cole Haan ZeroGrand shoes are definitely worth a look, and comfort will definitely be noticed, but would they de something you would wear with your suit to work? For me, and I will say I consider myself a with the modern stereotypical group, probably not often if I were to own a pair to begin with. However, a going-out and perhaps business casual work atmosphere? Strong possibility. But at that price tag of $248-$278? I’ll have a few other shoes in mind before I think about the ZeroGrand. What do you say?
The slick new shoes will come in two versions. One lineup is the Oxford No-Stitch which will encompass a Polyurethane and polyester rip-stock upper material combination. The Oxford No-Stitch also gulfs up most of the color combinations as well combo-ing it up in Black, Army Green, Blazer Blue, and Flint Gray.
ZeroGrand Oxford No-Stitch
ZeroGrand Wing Oxford
Similar in appearance and style except with a leather suede upper, these are probably considered the dressier of the two. The more expensive of the two doesn’t quite get the color palette of options, but still keeps it classy with Ironstone and Black Suede.