Nike's auto-lacing sneakers from 'Back to the Future' coming in 2015?

Credit: Nike

Tying shoelaces is for suckers. At least, that's what Back to the Future II taught us. In the movie, Marty McFly travels into the year 2015 and wears what is arguably one of the most lusted-after sneakers in the history of footwear: the Nike Air Mags. They were awesome for one reason: they laced themselves up with the press of a button. If one high-level Nike designer is to be believed, the futuristic sneakers are coming next year.

Back to the Future II was released in 1989. Some 25 years later and we're still making "bunny ear" loops to tie our shoes together. It stinks. The closest thing to the Air Mags was the 2011 release of the Nike MAGs, a replica of the movie's sneakers, complete with a rechargeable LED lighting system. But those didn't have any auto-lacing system. They were also extremely limited in production (only 1,500 pairs ever made) and auctioned at crazy prices, with all proceeds going to the Michael J. Fox Foundation to fund Parkinson's research.

A new report from Sole Collector claims Nike is reportedly on track to deliver sneakers with the "power laces" next year.

When asked about power laces, Nike designer Tinker Hatfield, who was visiting a Jordan Brands flight Lab space in New Orleans, said, "Are we gonna see power laces in 2015? To that, I say YES!" (For those who don't know, Hatfield was one the designers behind the original movie sneaker. He's now Nike's Vice President for Design and Special projects. Emphasis on the "special part.")

While it's unclear how serious Hatfield's comment was, there might be an inkling of truth behind it all. Back in 2010, Nike filed papers to patent a shoe with an auto-lacing system. And guess who was one of the guys who filed it? Would you look at that, it was Tinker Hatfield himself.

And if that's not enough that Hatfield is at least semi-serious about power laces, recall this video from 2011 explaining how the the non-lacing Nike MAGs were designed. In it, Hatfield says it's not impossible to believe that sneakers with power laces will be real by 2015.

Are we finally getting power laces or is Hatfield just teasing us to death? As is the case with all fictional Back to the Future products becoming a reality, we'll believe it when we see them in real life. We're still recovering from Mattel's disappointing non-hovering hoverboard release from two years ago.

Via Sole Collector

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