First Impressions

Several years ago, Nike ceased to be a go-to brand for athletic footwear for us. The brand felt like it had lost its way, having strayed from its roots as a running-focused company to one more obsessed with fashion than function. Recently we decided to give some of their new products a try. And our first experiences with the Nike Zoom Elite+ lead me to believe the company is once again making top-of-the-line running gear.


Nike’s chosen design gives the Zoom Elite+ a very unique look. On our shoe, the multi-layer upper combines a near transparent mesh panel over a neon yellow reinforcing layer, which in turn covers a more traditional woven nylon panel. To accommodate the paneled construction, Nike moved the reflective swoosh logo toward the heel. It looks fast and felt comfortable. Breath-ability and cooling were good in our tests.

Because the Zoom Elite+ is designed as a neutral shoe, the typical inserts at the arch of stability shoes were missing. For those with high arches, this design is perfect. And as a runner transitioning to a forefoot strike, I also didn’t miss the added stability features too much. However, I did ultimately add a Superfoot insole to the Zoom Elite+ for just a touch of additional stability.

Weight: 24.25 oz per pair (Mens size 11)
Forefoot height: 18mm
Heel height: 27mm

The Zoom Elite+ doesn’t look like it hits the minimal target of 9mm drop from heel to toe. But it does with a 27mm heel cushion and 18mm forefoot. Nike uses what it refers to as a Zoom Unit — an air filled insert – in the forefoot to enable the lower profile without sacrificing cushioning. It did a fine job absorbing road impact. Overall, the Zoom Elite+ felt the plushest of the three shoes in this test.


No complaints here. The toe box provides plenty of room while the narrow heel cup did a good job of holding my foot in place. Order your regular size.

Final Verdict

My first experience with a Nike running shoe in years was a very good one. The Zoom Elite+ is well designed, reliable and very comfortable. Nike, it’s glad to have you back.

First Impressions:
[Rating:4/5] Features:
[Rating:4/5] Fit:
[Rating:4/5] Final Verdict:

Thanks for reading another outdoor gear review from GearGuide. Written by Matt K.