Nike disrupt the market with the drop of the long-awaited Mercurial Air Zoom Ultra SE. The limited edition boot was originally announced in February 2020 as a concept boot during Nike’s Innovation Summit in New York City, but now it's here, and just 1,000 pairs will drop on March 21.

When the concept was first revealed at that Innovation Summit two years ago, you'd be forgiven to think you might've seen it on pitch by now, but Nike have been fine-tuning it ready for a landmark year of football. Oh, and you'll have to wait a bit longer to see how they fully incorporate the tech into their football boots, as the Mercurial Air Zoom Ultra SE is a special edition drop with its key purpose to tease what Nike have to come.

Designed completely around the full length Zoom strobel unit, the Mercurial Air Zoom Ultra SE continues to push the boundaries of the game while listening to the voice of Nike athletes. With a goal of creating a one-of-a-kind boot, the Nike team experimented with a few of the best footwear innovations across the company and put them into this design.

Taking innovation from the basketball court, the Mercurial Air Zoom Ultra SE was built around a full-length articulated Zoom airbag that provides a unique underfoot sensation and enhanced energy return. Nike designers aimed to have the Zoom airbag be the focal point of the boot and to achieve this they created a light and airy translucent upper combined with Flywire to properly lockdown the midfoot for a secure fit. The Zoom airbag is also visible and even exposed and touchable in one spot on the underside of the boot.


Some key details are reeled off below:

- The 4.5mm full-length articulated Zoom airbag is the same air bag as the KD 12, providing the athlete enhanced energy return and designed to help maximize responsiveness on the pitch.

- Based on athlete insights, designers shifted their focus from providing cushioning in the heel of the boot to increasing. responsiveness in the forefoot, which is what this Nike Zoom airbag provides for those fast and reactive footballers.

- Players who wear the Mercurial constantly take off from their forefoot at full speed and the full length Zoom airbag allows for a snappy, propulsive energy return.

- Transitioning the plate directly to the internal boot chassis resulting in the elimination of an extra layer of material leaves only the sockliner between the foot and the Zoom airbag for a springy and responsive experience.

- Objective was to bring Zoom Strobel to life in a playable manner.

- Light and snappy Synergia Plate with cavity to create a 1:1 lock with the Zoom unit.

- The plate is 40% lighter than the carbon fiber plate it replaces, yet it is stronger and more responsive.

Upper and Flywire

- A re-engineered upper makes the boot more comfortable with a lightweight and breathable design.

- Transparent mesh with zonal embroidery which helps secure the footballers foot in the boot.

- Perforations and cutouts on the lining provide support where it’s needed most.

- Flywire provides mid-foot lockdown for a more secure fit.


Key differences between February 2020 Concept Book and the Mercurial Air Zoom Ultra SE 

- Along with rigorous testing and listening to the voice of Nike athletes, the Swoosh improved the comfort with the introduction of a lofted transparent mesh that’s been zonally engineered for proper lockdown of the foot while being both lightweight and breathable.

- A new mesh upper has a strong focus on a secure lockdown of the foot. It includes perforated lining and cutouts to only provide support where it’s needed. Embroidery across the mesh and Flywire through the midfoot also provide lightweight lockdown.


Pick up the Nike Mercurial Air Zoom Ultra SE football boots at on March 21 at 8am.