New Balance's new carbon fiber sneaker is instantly one of the best-looking runners

The Fuel Cell RC Elite gets a v2 update.

New Balance Fuel Cell RC Elite v2

Last year, New Balance got into the long-distance, high-performance running game with the introduction of its FuelCell RC Elite. Ready to compete with the likes of Nike’s Next% series and Adidas’ Adizero Adios Pro, the sneaker boasts a full-length carbon fiber plate along with the brand’s super lightweight FuelCell RC cushioning.

New Balance is now giving the sneaker an update with the introduction of the Fuel Cell RC Elite v2, and it’s immediately become one of the best-looking running shoes around. The sequel sneaker opts for a simpler construction that allows the winged New Balance logo, which emphasizes its speed, to stand front and center. Gone are the heel stripes and triangle-adorned outsole from the sneaker’s successor, which in hindsight were superfluous details.

The Fuel Cell RC Elite v2 doesn’t just get an aesthetic upgrade through paring down, though. The amount of Fuel Cell cushioning in the midsole has increased, while the full-length carbon fiber plate has been given new angling to help bolster your stride further.

New Balance
New Balance
New Balance

The specs — The new Fuel Cell RC Elite v2 weighs just 7.7 ounces, a figure reached in part by cutting out part of the sole to reveal the carbon fiber plate. From heel to toe, the sole features 8mm of drop — a reduction of 2mm from its predecessor.

Reviewers have touted the upgraded sneaker for its bouncier feeling due to the increase in cushioning and for the tangible sense of propulsion generated by the carbon fiber plate. The upper’s medial side has also been 3D-printed in order to create a more secure fit over long distances.

Out now — New Balance’s Fuel Cell RC Elite v2 is out now for $225, although many sizes have already sold out. Sellouts also tend to be the case for Nike and Adidas’ top-of-the-line running kicks, but if you’re patient you should eventually be able to land a pair in your size.