In what appears to be an exclusive release, the Speed LR — an all leather update to the FiveFingers Trek LS — has just hit the shelves of REI. Don't take my word for it, check out the Speed LR's product listing page at REI.com (and note I just ordered size 43s!).
The Speed LR is only available in an almost entirely black leather upper (with subtle grey accents and Vibram logo'ing). It's selling for $130. More information and photos after the jump!
The official description of the Speed LR we got back from the Spring preview went like this:
The Speed LR is a more rugged version of the original Speed. Built on the Trek outsole, the 4mm TC-1 Dura cleated rubber outsole delivers traction on various terrain while the EVA midsole provides exceptional plating protection. The kangaroo leather upper and sock liner are soft against the foot, yet strong and tear resistant with outstanding breathability. Designed for the casual wearer, the Speed LR will accommodate a wide range of foot widths and instep heights, thanks to the traditional lacing system. Machine Washable. Air Dry.
And below are the high-res stock photos of the FiveFingers Speed LR.
You'll recall the LR was a possible Fall 2012 FiveFingers release for men only (though with orange accents). Later, I heard rumblings that it wasn't even going to make it to production, after all. That news, in conjunction with the discontinuation of the KSO Trek, Trek LS, and Bormio, would mean that leather Vibram FiveFingers in the U.S. would be no more.
Thank the toe gods for REI.
Seems that someone at everyone's favorite outdoor retailer decided that they had to have the Speed LR, made the call, and voila, they're here. Mind, short of some surprise news (and this release was a surprise already), what I've heard indicates that only REI will be carrying the Speed LRs, that they're a limited run here in the U.S., and well, this is it.
What's the difference between the Speed LR and the Trek LS? It looks like Vibram made a few subtle design changes. Lace eyelets are fabric on the LRs and face in compared to rivets on the Trek LS and a round lace replaces the flat lace of the Trek LS. Also, it looks like they got rid of the two outermost leather seams on the big and little toes, lending the LRs a slightly more refined look. Where the tongue ends has also been refined in the LR design and the LR has a flat black sole instead of the camouflaged black/grey sole of the Trek LS. More on the differences can be seen in the forums here. Initial indications by a couple lucky folks who have picked them up are that they are a little more comfortable than the Trek LS.
The $130 pricepoint on these puppies is about where the original Trek LS was when it released a year ago (it was $140 so ten bucks more — still available here, incidentally). Note that the Speed LRs aren't water-resistant like other offerings coming out this Fall (The non-leather Speed XC, for example).
If you're angling for some all-leather FiveFingers, you know what to do.
What about the rest of the Fall 2012 FiveFingers? Where are they?
A number of us expected to see all the water-resistant FiveFingers coming this Fall to hit in August. So where are they?
Good questions — and no solid answers, actually. Suffice to say they'll be here soon (weeks if not days) and just as soon as they hit you can expect news about it here as well as first looks and reviews as soon as possible. So subscribe by email if you haven't already and I'll be sure to announce any releases as they happen!