Executive Summary:
Excellent fit but cushioning feels like Curry 2 or CFD2 not the CFD1. Traction is excellent on clean floors but needs more wiping than the previous Clutchfit Drives on dusty floors. 

Last year’s Clutchfit Drive 2 was a solid performer but barely had any Clutchfit material. The Clutchfit Drive 3 returns to its Clutchfit Drive roots with a full upper makeover and supposedly Micro G. 
Pros: clean floor traction, familiar cushioning, excellent fit, containment 

Cons: traction on dusty floors needs wiping, rides higher and firmer than CFD1. how about some cushioning differentiation? Not the most stable shoe relative to others

Sizing:
regular and narrow footers go true to size, wide footers can go up half a size if needed although I didn’t

Best for: guards

Buying advice: wait for serious discounts, these aren’t going anywhere or buy the CFD 1 at discount shops or eBay. 

Weight

Pretty much every shoe this year is about 16 oz 

Traction


If you didn’t like the traction on the CFD 1 or 2 you won’t like these either. Fantastic on clean floor but on dusty floors you’ll have to wipe fairly often. Rubber is the middle is softer/stickier and the grooves  in the middle are tightly spaced in the forefoot. The outer grooves save the traction when they get dusty so you’re not slipping and sliding too much but be prepared to wipe. I think changing the compound is a good concept but model the similarly spaced like the Crazylight Boost 2016. 


I had to wipe more often than I did with the CFD 1 which I feel is my lower limit for traction performance so these didn’t make the cut for me. 

Cushioning

According to UA literature, the CFD3 features Charged in the heel and a full length layer of Micro G…if you say so UA? 

The CFD 1 has been in my top 5 rotation since it came out and the CFD 3 does not feel anything like the original in terms of cushioning. I felt like I was playing in my Curry 2/2.5 (which I like for different reasons) but when UA states Micro G is back, expectations of a softer ride enter my mind. Below you can see the Ortholite sockliner. 

It isn’t a bad ride at all but for those expecting that low ride and soft bounce of Micro, you won’t be happy. The CFD3 rides higher than the previous two versions and that Micro G feel isn’t there either. My guess is “a layer of Micro G sits on top of the bigger chunk of Charged cushioning so it’s like a foam topper on firm mattress. I would have rather had Micro G in the heel and just Charged in the forefoot personally. 


Materials

Clutchfit is back in full this time around


Flexible, pliable, and conforms to the foot like a glove (not OJ’s glove mind you..sorry been watching OJ Made in America, great series by the way)

UA got rid of all that synthetic that the CFD 2 had and redesigned the Clutchfit material to be even better.  With the CFD 1, you’d have a bit of bunching and deadspace in the toe box but the CFD 3 material eliminated that. It feels like UA just tightened a lumpy carpet. I also liked the tighter Clutchfit pattern in the toe box to assist with containment. 

Well done UA!

Fit

I went true to size and these fit me perfectly length and width wise. The CFD2 was a little short in the toe box but these are true to size like the original. I tried half a size up and I could fit that as well but I felt a little too much movement so wide footers may want to try these on. 

There is a lot more padding in the heel and tongue of CFD 3 versus the CFD 1 which is a good thing in my opinion. 

All the little tweaks UA made with the CFD 3 resulted in a great one to one fit.

Great job UA!

Support and stability

Like the CFD 1, the high ankle collar is very pliable so there isn’t much in terms of support other than the fit and heel counter. 


The CFD 3 is stable underfoot thanks to the outrigger and flat heel. 


It isn’t as stable as the Curry Two or Jc2 but it’s stable enough. I felt it to be a little tippy for my tastes but I didn’t sprain anything during my runs with the CFD3. The CFD 1 was solid in the heel. 

Containment

Surprisingly good and that’s due to the design of the Clutchfit in the toe box. Since it tightens up in the toe box, it doesn’t flex and stretch as much as the rest of the shoe. I still prefer the containment of the CFD 1 since it has a physical barrier running almost the entire length of the shoe. 

Regardless of my preference, these were nicely engineered UA! 

Conclusion 

Expectations really change how someone perceives a shoe and UA set expectations high when they mentioned the use of Micro G. If they didn’t mention it at all, I don’t think anyone would care but the fact that they didn’t deliver on the Micro G feel is going to be letdown for most. However, cushioning is perfectly fine to me and feels like last seasons’s Charged set ups. I’m extremely happy Clutchfit came back in full force but the traction let me down down a bit and the shoe as a whole feels almost too similar to the CFD 1 which is good thing for those who didn’t get a chance to pick those up. I would not advise buying these now because since Steph has his own line, the CFD is pretty much the ugly step sister nobody wants. These will hit outlets and be steeply discounted in the next few months. UA really should make a GSW colorway to generate some buzz or some PE’s. I ordered the White Royal off Eastbay but it got canceled and got removed off the site :/

The CFD 1 was just a great balanced shoe so it’s going to be nearly impossible for UA to top it. If you’re looking for that Micro G feel, look at the Lightning 2, Torch 4 and Rocket or look on eBay or Marshall’s for the original CFD as they are popping up for way under retail. 

11 Comment on “Under Armour Clutchfit Drive 3 Performance Review

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