Why Are Nike Air Mags Expensive? (3 Reasons Revealed!)

why nike air mags expensive

Nike released a limited version of the Nike Air Mag sneaker, a replica of a shoe from Back to the Future II. If you ask any sneakerhead what the most coveted shoe in the world is, there is a significant chance that they will all respond the same way: The shoe Michael J Fox wore in “Back to the Future Part II. 

Air Mags are expensive because of three main reasons. They featured in Back to the Future Part II, a show that was a hit even before its debut, the technology used to create the shoe, its scarcity (just a few pairs are made), and designer Tinker Hatfield who brought the dream to reality.

To understand why the Nike Air Mags are so expensive, the shoe’s brief history to what it is today, and whether the high price is justified, continue reading this post.

Background On the Nike Air Mag

Back to the Future II was a box office triumph and the first trilogy installment, and Tinker Hatfield, a Nike designer, was tasked with making the shoe.

When the film was released in 1989, the self-knotting shoes were pure fabrication since special effects were utilized in the film’s lacing sequence. Despite the ongoing interest in the shoe in the movie, the designers could not bring the shoe to life since there was no requisite technology at the time.

Fortunately, on October 21, 2015, the same day fictional Marty McFly landed in the Future, Nike released a replica of the sneakers, replete with space-age self-lacing technology.

Nike also launched a limited-edition run of 89 pairs of the famous shoes to commemorate the year that Back to the Future II was released, giving rise to the shoe’s popularity. The sneakers would be raffled off for a $10 entry fee. Because there was no restriction on the number of tickets purchased, people with millions of dollars to spare were significantly more likely to receive a pair.

The proceeds received from the raffle tickets were donated to the Michael J. Fox Foundation, which was used to finance research into Parkinson’s disease cures.

How Much Was the Most Expensive Pair of Nike Air Mag Sold For?

In November 2016, a pair of the Nike Air Mag, which is short for Magnetic Anti Gravity, was sold for a whopping $200,000 in a private sale. 

Nike Air Mag secured a place in the list of the most expensive shoes ever sold worldwide at that price.

What Makes Nike Air Mags Expensive?

How did the Nike Air Mag sneakers become the world’s most sought footwear? At first glance, the answer appears to be self-evident. The shoes are self-lacing, illuminated sneakers. Isn’t that every child’s dream?

There is, however, more to it. Three additional prevalent factors that contributed to the shoe’s unprecedented popularity are:

The Back to the Future films’ Cult-Like Following

As aforementioned, the Nike Air Mag was featured in a film, Back To The Future II, which was already a surefire smash before its release instantly made it a classic. 

The shoe’s technology enticed the huge audience who watched the movie. 

The Ingenuity of Renowned Designer Tinker Hatfield

Tink Hatfield made the Nike Air Mag fashionable as well as functional. He also added the sleek white and gray color scheme with brilliant blue specks, the triangular finger bops, neon lights, and the light-up logo across the top band, all eye-catching elements.

Hatfield is also well known for creating Air Jordans and the Nike Air Trainer, widely considered the world’s first “cross-training” sneaker.

In an interview, Hatfield said that he was motivated to create the original Nike Air Mag by the basketball and running shoes he was developing.

The Scarcity Effect Created by Nike’s ultra-limited Releases

It is a fundamental notion in both psychology and economics that: as the scarcity of an item grows, its value and desire to own it increase accordingly.

Nike has utilized this concept as a global retailer to drive demand for its Nike Air Mag by making limited numbers.

  • 2011

Until 2011, sneakers were essentially a product of the sneaker head’s imagination. They became a reality, though, when 1,510 pairs of the Nike Mag were released on a limited basis that year. On the surface, they still lacked the power lacing.

A promotional film showcasing Marty McFly’s wardrobe, stocked with Nike Air Mags, preceded the film’s premiere. Each pair was then auctioned off for charity purposes, where Nike is said to have raised $5,695,190.53. 

On the secondary market, a pair of 2011 Nike MAGs usually will set you back between US$750 and upwards of $10,000.

  • 2016

Nike released an upgraded version of the iconic “Back to the Future” sneaker in 2016. Each pair features Adaptive Fit technology, more often referred to as “power laces,” which detects the wearer’s movement and automatically adjusts the laces’ tightness or looseness.

Only 89 pairs were made, with Michael J. Fox being the first to receive one for free. The subsequent sale brought in an incredible US$6.75 million.

The shoe’s design incorporated lighted panels and self-tying laces. Additionally, they featured an electroluminescent outsole, advanced materials, and a 3,000-hour rechargeable internal battery.

The Air Mags are Nike’s first rechargeable footwear. Despite the shoe’s absence of power laces, a key component in the film, Nike published a statement claiming that they “took inspiration from the film” when developing it.

  • 2019

Nike presented HyperAdapt 1.0, an unmistakably fantastic collection incorporating Adaptive Fit technology. The line was so well-received that it sparked the development of a successor. The 2019 versions range in price from $300 to $795 thereabout.

Conversely, the “Back to the Future” sneakers are significantly more expensive and one-of-a-kind. These lifelike reproductions have been painstakingly made to appear as if they had just stepped off a film set. 

What Is Nike Air Mag Fitting?

The Nike Air Mags run true to size; however, size down half a size if you prefer a tighter fit. Although it is exclusively available in men’s sizes, ladies can obtain one by scaling down at least 1.5 sizes.

Why Should You Invest in Nike Air Mags?

  • Many people praise the Nike Air Mags aesthetic and style, with many remarking on how great it looks and how true to the film it is.
  • Numerous users have expressed their delight with the shoe’s comfort, claiming you can comfortably wear it for long.
  • Due to the technological components of the sneaker, a few reviewers claim that wearing the Nike Air Mags transports them to the Future or space.
  • According to a few comments, the sneakers are pretty good quality. They do not wear out of the chip.

Wrapping Up

Nike Air Mags is one of the most iconic sneakers in sneaker history, having captivated sneakerheads worldwide. Get a Nike Air Mags if you haven’t already and experience technology on your feet in a way that you have never before. The shoe is beautiful, coupled with high-end technology to give you an unmatched experience.

The Nike Air Mags are worth every coin and the thirty-year waiting period from people who knew of them to when they were launched was worth it.





Sneaker Freaker