Nike Invincible 3 Review

Time to stock up on the Invincible 2

Nike Invincible 3
(Image: © Nick Harris-Fry / Future)

Our Verdict

The changes Nike has made to the Invincible 3 make sense on paper but in practice the ride of the shoe has become less enjoyable – without making it as stable as we’d like. The Invincible 3 is a reliable shoe, it’s just that the Invincible 2 remains better.


  • Bouncy ZoomX midsole
  • More stable than Invincible 2


  • Heavier than Invincible 2
  • Still not stable

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The Nike Invincible 2 is one of my favourite cushioned shoes and one of the best running shoes available, with its ZoomX midsole that delivers a bouncy and fun ride for easy and long runs.

The Invincible was a wobbly shoe, though, and Nike has taken steps to increase the stability of the Invincible 3 by design changes to the heel clip and by increasing the width of the shoe. Overall, these changes don’t improve the shoe, which remains unstable and is now heavier than the Invincible 2. There is also a looser fit around the heel.

Nike Invincible 3 Review: Price And Availability

The Nike Invincible 3 launched in February 2033 and costs $180 in the US and £169.95 in the UK. In the US the price is the same as for the Invincible 2, while the Invincible 3 is £5 more expensive than its predecessor in the UK on RRP.

Design And Fit

Nike Invincible 3 in blue

(Image credit: Nick Harris-Fry / Future)

The core features of the Nike Invincible 3 are the same as on past versions of the shoe. The midsole is made from Nike’s bouncy PEBA-based ZoomX foam, with a Flyknit upper and rubber outsole with a waffle tread. However, changes have been made to the shoe, generally with the aim of making the Invincible 3 more stable.

That starts with changes to the Flyknit upper to create a more secure fit around the midfoot, although, unexpectedly, I found that the heel is now looser on the Invincible 3. I didn’t have any problems with heel rub, but it is a complaint raised by others who have used the shoe, whereas no such issue seems to have existed with the Invincible 2. The Invincible 3 was still true to size though.

The plastic heel clip at the back has been redesigned to sink into the midsole of the shoe and cradle the foot more securely. The midsole is higher by 1mm, with a 40mm stack at the heel and 31mm at the forefoot for a 9mm drop. 

Nike has widened the shoe to make it more stable, but increasing the height and width has resulted in weight gain. The Invincible 3 weighs 11.1oz/316g in my UK size 9, compared with 10.7oz/303g for the Invincible 2 in the same size.

The outsole provides solid rubber coverage with a waffle pattern that has provided reliable grip during my testing. It is thicker than the outsole on the Invincible 2, which should increase durability.

Nike Invincible 3

(Image credit: Nick Harris-Fry / Future)

How I Tested This Shoe

I have run five times in the Invincible 3 but none was longer than 10km, because I have found it a little unstable during a period when I am recovering from a knee injury. I have also tested the Invincible 1 and Invincible 2 extensively.

Running Performance

I’m a fan of the Nike Invincible 2, but it’s a shoe I enjoy only at certain points during my training. When my legs are fresher – near the start of a marathon training plan – it is a delight to use for easy and long runs, being bouncier and more enjoyable than any other cushioned shoe.

However, deep into marathon training, when my legs are tired or at points when I have a small injury niggle, I tend to avoid the Invincible because it is a little wobbly, and firmer, more stable cushioned shoes offer more support.

I hoped the added stability on the Invincible 3 would maintain the fun while adding support, but that’s not been the case during my testing. It is still a fun and bouncy shoe, but a little heavier and less joyously springy than the Invincible 2, and it is still not stable.

Over the past few weeks I have been carrying an impact injury in my knee and I found that using the Invincible 3 seemed to annoy it more than other shoes, to the point where on one run I turned back quickly to change into the Hoka Clifton 9 as a more stable option.

I don’t trust the Invincible 3 as an easy option when I’m feeling a bit niggly or tired, in the same way as I’d avoid the Invincible 2 at those points – so the updated stability features haven’t done the trick for me.

Nike Invincible 3

Nike Invincible 3, left, and Nike Invincible 2 (Image credit: Nick Harris-Fry / Future)

When feeling fine and using the Invincible 3, it is one of the best cushioned shoes, but I prefer the Invincible 2 as a lighter option. Neither version of the shoe is versatile, but you can pick up the pace since the ZoomX foam is so bouncy; it’s just less directed than in Nike’s carbon racers that combine the foam with a plate.

Is The Nike Invincible 3 Worth It?

I can see what Nike was trying to do with the Invincible 3, but the changes have not improved the shoe. While the Invincible 2 remains available, that’s what I’d opt for if you’re looking to try the line, especially since the older shoe is regularly in sales.

The Invincible 3 is more bouncy than the best cushioned shoes from other brands, but the trade-off remains a lack of stability, and I found there were times when I didn’t feel comfortable using it because of the wobble.

Two max-cushioned shoes that I’ve found more supportive are the Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 and New Balance Fresh Foam X More v4. The More v4 has a firmer, duller ride than the Invincible 3, but its rockered design is more stable, while the Gel-Nimbus 25 is soft and bouncy but still more stable than the Nike – and it will suit more runners for easy and long runs.

Nick Harris-Fry
Senior writer

Nick Harris-Fry is a journalist who has been covering health and fitness since 2015. Nick is an avid runner, covering 70-110km a week, which gives him ample opportunity to test a wide range of running shoes and running gear. He is also the chief tester for fitness trackers and running watches, treadmills and exercise bikes, and workout headphones.