Air Max 90 vs Air Max 90 LTR [Find Out The Key Differences]

Written By Mahia

As a runner, I have worn several pairs of Nike Air Max 90s throughout the years. When the Air Max 90 LTR hit the market, I couldn’t spot any visible difference between them.


But after wearing both versions extensively for the past few months, I realized they have some significant differences.

However, if you are torn between the classic and LTR Air Max 90s, keep reading!

In this write-up, I’ll point out the key differences between the Classic and Leather Air Max 90s to ease your decision.

What is The Difference Between Air Max 90 and Air Max 90 LTR?

The classic and LTR Air Max 90 sneakers are pretty much identical in their overall design and look. However, the prime difference between them is in their material. Whereas classic Air Max 90s are made of mesh and rubber material, the LTR ones come with an entire leather upper.

Apart from their difference in construction, both shoes have other comparable features as well.

Difference between the OG and LTR Air Max 90 at a glance-

FeaturesAir Max 90Air Max 90 LTR
Material Mesh, suede, and synthetic materialPremium leather
Breathability Extremely breathableNot so breathable
DurabilityHighly durableQuick creasing of the leather
Style and color optionsOffers 52 styles with lots of color optionsOffers only 9 style options
Comfort Very comfortableLess comfortable
Cost Comparatively affordableMore expensive

So, let’s find out how Air Max 90 and Air Max 90 LTR Differ in their features:

1. History and Purpose

The Air Max 90 was first introduced in 1990 as a running shoe. Designed by Tinker Hatfield, the Air Max 90 quickly gained popularity for its bold colorways, unique paneling, and revolutionary visible air cushioning in the heel.


Meanwhile, the Air Max 90 LTR, which stands for leather, is a variation of the original Air Max 90 that features a leather upper instead of the traditional mesh and suede materials.

The Air Max 90 was originally designed as a performance running shoe. However, it has transitioned into a casual shoe over the years due to its classic design and comfort.

On the other hand, the Air Max 90 LTR was introduced as a lifestyle shoe from the start, targeting those who appreciate a more premium and upscale look in their everyday footwear.

2. Material

Whether it’s Air Max 1 or Air Max 90, Nike is known for using high-quality materials in its AM models.

That being said earlier, the main difference between the Air Max 90 and LTR Air Max 90 is their material.

While the Air Max 90 features a combination of mesh, suede, and synthetic materials, the Air Max 90 LTR boasts a full-grain leather upper that exudes a premium and sophisticated look.

3. Level of Comfort

Undoubtedly, the Air Max 90 and Air Max 90 LTR boast exceptional comfort. Whether you wear them for running or casual walking, their Air cushioning in the heel will provide maximum shock absorption and cushioning with each step.


However, from my experience, I would say the classic Air Max 90s are comfier than the leather ones. Because of its mesh upper, the classic AM 90 is extremely breathable and lightweight.

Also, the flexible rubber sole quickly adapts to your feet and allows your feet to bend effortlessly.

Conversely, the LTR AM 90 shoes are not as breathable as the classic ones, as their uppers are completely leather. And in my experience, I would feel sweat on my feet after wearing them for a while.

Although not noticeable, the shoes are a bit heavier than the classic Max 90s.

4. Size and Fit

When it comes to sizing, both original and leather Air Max 90 shoes fit the same, which is true to size. But if you have wide feet like me, you can get half-size bigger ones for a better fit.

However, you may already know the classic Air Max 90s doesn’t need any extra break-in period. They will fit comfortably right out of the box.

But when worn for the first time, the Air Max 90 ltr felt a bit stiffer on my feet. And I had to wear them around for a week to break into them properly.

5. Durability

When it comes to how durable the shoes are, I would say the Air Max 90 OG lasts longer than the leather version.

Even so, Air Max ltr is pretty much sustainable with the premium leather they come with, and they are very easy to clean.

However, the leather creases out very quickly if you wear them continuously. And after months of wear, the rubber outsole may perform efficiently, but you won’t find the creased leather wearable at all.

Conversely, you can run and bend your feet in the classic AM 90s without being concerned about creasing your shoes.

6. Style Options

The OG Air Max 90 offers more style options than the leather version. You can find as many as 54 styles of this model with a wide range of colors for men, women, and kids of all ages.


Plus, these colorways of the classic AM 90s are readily available on Nike’s official website as well as in retail shops and online platforms.

But the ltr version offers only 9 different styles with limited color options. And they are not as available as the classic ones, even on their official website.

7. Price

Well, it’s well-known that Nike Air Max shoes are so expensive due to their high brand value and advanced cushioning.

However, when compared, the AM 90 LTR tends to be slightly more expensive than the original Air Max 90. And the overall price range for the leather AM 90 is $60 to $140.

This is due to the premium leather material used in the upper of the Air Max 90 LTR, which adds to its overall cost.

Meanwhile, the original AM 90s are a little cheaper, with a price range of $30 to $160.

As the classic model offers a wide range of colorways, you may find many affordable options within your budget. But this isn’t always possible with the limited offerings of the LTR shoe line.

Overall, both classic and ltr Air Max 90 shoes have distinctive features of their own. However, to find the best one for you, I’ll now share with you the positive and negative sides of both shoes.

Pros and Cons of Air Max 90 LTR and Air Max 90

Apart from the incredible features, both the original and leather version of Air Max 90s have their fair share of drawbacks as well.

So, let’s find out the pros and cons of these two Nike beasts:

Classic Air Max 90

  • »Suitable for both running and casual wear.
  • »More durable.
  • »Breathable and lightweight material.
  • »Offers more affordable options.
  • »Wide range of styles and colors.
  • »Readily available.
  • »Older model and design.

Air Max 90 LTR

  • »Classy and stylish design.
  • »Versatile.
  • »Suitable for daily wear.
  • »Comfortable.
  • »Not good for running.
  • »Quick creasing of the leather upper.
  • »Limited styles and colorways.

Which One is Better Between Air Max 90 and Air Max 90 LTR?

Personally, I like the classic AM 90 more, as you can use this versatile pair both for running and casual outings. And the mesh upper and air cushioning will fit you comfortably while giving you a classy and retro look.

However, if you prefer casual sneakers with a more refined look, you can choose the leather version of this model. You can pair these shoes with any outfit, from jeans to formal dresses.

As quick creasing of the leather is an issue with this pair, you can still buy ltr Air Max 90 for occasional use.

Bottom Line

While both classic and leather Air Max 90 shoes are wardrobe staples, hopefully, this article will help you find the better one. Also, you can now make an informed decision with all the detailed info I’ve provided here.

So, without hesitating any longer, grab your favorite Air Max 90.

Also, if you need to know more about this topic, let me know in the comment.

About The Author
Since childhood, Mahia is a shoe freak. And this is what lead her to do more research and gather knowledge about shoes.Mahia has always wanted to share her skill and knowledge about footwear with a mass audience, which ended her up in this amazing workplace.When Mahia is not writing, you can almost always find her in the kitchen experimenting with different recipes to upgrade her catering menu.

Leave a Comment