Wednesday, March 27, 2024

Anta Mach 4 Review: 4 Comparisons

 Article by Derek Li

ANTA MACH 4 (S$159 (~US$118))

ANTA is the world’s largest sports equipment manufacturer by revenue, and is the third largest manufacturer of sporting goods overall, behind Nike and Adidas. I have to admit, before the great Kenenisa Bekele signed with ANTA, I had known of the brand, but it lacked allure. Now it’s got major street credibility. Then in February I was approached by ANTA about reviewing some of their shoes, and I expressed a preference for lower stack options and the MACH 4 is what was recommended.

A little background about how I came about reviewing this shoe. During my preparation for the 2022 Chicago Marathon, I started having a problem with my left hamstring, and it is an issue that I am still in the process of recovering from, some 1.5 years later. As part of the rehabilitation process, I decided I need to run less in high stack carbon-plated shoes for day-to-day training. So I’ve been looking at shoes with a little more traditional forefoot flex, and shoes that are a little lower in stack. This has been confounded by the fact that my current schedule prevents me from running doubles in training and so my single day runs tend to be longer and slower now. As it turns out, even the lower stack shoes are giving a 35mm heel stack these days and it’s hard to find suitable trainers.

As it turns out, a lot of the Chinese brands, many of which are little known outside of China as they don’t sell outside of their domestic market, seem to always have a number of models that are of the lower stack variety. I dug a little more into this and found out that there is a national fitness test that college students must pass in order to graduate, and part of this test is a 50m sprint and a 1000m… well I guess it’s also a sprint to me, but the point is, there is huge demand for lower stack, more aggressive shoes for this purpose.

Per ANTA’s marketing, the MACH 4 is geared toward uptempo running, city running where cornering stability is important, and for road races in the 5-21km range.

Official stack: 30/24 (6mm drop) Measured stack: 33/27 including sockliner

Platform Width: Forefoot 111mm, mid-foot 43mm, heel 88mm

Weight for men’s US9.5 is 246g / 8.68oz

Midsole firmness – Shore A 29.5 A

Retail Prices at sources in Southeast Asia (see end of review): S$159 (~US$118)


·       Breathable upper

·       Good vibration dampening

·       Good stability


·       Can give a bottom-heavy feel at faster paces

Upper and Fit

The upper uses a dual layer synthetic mesh for the most part. At the toe box, there is a denser inner mesh overlaid by a perforated thinner outer layer. This is rounded off by an internal toe guard at the front. At midfoot, the mesh transitions to a single layer external mesh, reinforced by webbing that is attached to the lace eyelets on either side of the foot (coined A-WEB). 

There are 5 rows of eyes that span the midfoot to the ankle opening, not counting the extra eyelet for heel-lock lacing. 

The tongue is moderately padded and adopts a gusseted design to further add reinforcement to the midfoot. 

The heel area is relatively conventional with moderate padding around a semi-rigid internal heel cup. 

The shoe adopts the upward swoop at the heel, to reduce irritation of the Achilles insertion there. The stock sockliner is made of traditional EVA as far as I can tell. Overall, the fit is fairly traditional and should fit the vast majority of feet quite well.

My initial step in feel was quite comfortable. The materials are not overly stiff and it was quite easy to lock down the foot with medium thickness socks. The overall fit sits closer to that of a daily trainer than a snug race/workout type of shoe for me, which suits me just fine for my purposes. 

The fit is true to size, and walking around you can appreciate the subtle bounciness of the foam underfoot. The shoe feels very stable, courtesy of the lower stack and fairly anatomical width of the toebox and heel.

Aesthetically, I think the shoe looks.. OK. It’s not the most eye-catching of designs, and in truth the whole outsole/midsole interface looks overly complicated to me, but for the price point it competes in, I think it’s fine.


The midsole uses a single density of their NitroEdge foam, which is touted as a nitrogen infused foam with an 82.8% energy return. Visually, this foam looks like it is pellet-based, so while it is nitrogen infused, it is more likely to be a TPU-based foam. 

This is actually my first encounter with a nitrogen-infused TPU foam, as most of the time it is EVA or PEBA that is nitrogen infused. The foam is reinforced with a purple  W-shaped plastic cage (Coined Launch Zone; see image below) that mostly wraps the bottom half of the midsole, reducing lateral torque, and also gives the shoe some a little bit of extra rigidity through the toe box, though I must emphasize that the shoe still flexes quite well through the toes. 

Source: ANTA

The overall underfoot sensation is that of a denser type of rebound typical of TPU-based foams. As with many other TPU-based foams, don’t expect it to be super soft, but do expect very good resilience and longevity with this type of foam.


The outsole here is a relatively soft rubber compound, with a 3D-spike-like outsole pattern for added grip. Although the rubber feels soft (and this adds a lot to underfoot comfort and the overall flexibility of the shoe), I have found it to be very durable with minimal wear showing on the outsole after over 100km of running.

Ride and Conclusions

The Good:

·       Very good vibration dampening for the stack height.

·       The nylon cage gives the shoe a nice snappiness at faster paces

·       Very stable ride despite the lack of traditional stability elements

The Bad:

·       The shoe has a bit of a bottom-heavy feel during workouts; this seems to be something I feel more of with TPU-based foams.

·       Could be a one-off anomaly, but the sockliner in the right shoe began riding up the heel out of the shoe for me on the third run, and I had to glue it down with some contact cement after that. Strangely, I had no such issues with the left shoe and haven’t had to glue the sockliner down. As far as I know, no other testers have reported this anomaly.

I think this is a very good all-rounded daily trainer for people looking for a lower drop, more traditional shoe. 

The ride is by no means harsh, and at its attractive price point, would be a viable option for novice runners looking for a do-it-all type of shoe that can handle daily runs and some faster workouts. 

I think the arch structure is low enough that people with low arches should fit the shoe well, but if you have overly wide feet, I think the shoe might not fit so well for you, as the upper tends not to stretch so much in this model. In terms of ride, 

I think this shoe is closest in terms of underfoot cushioning to an Adidas Adios 6 (I didn’t test any of the later Adios models), or even the earlier Adidas Adizero Pro (the predecessor to the Adios Pro 1) though there is more flex in this shoe than the Adizero Pro. Another shoe that comes to mind is the Saucony Ride 13. Even though the Ride 13 was significantly heavier than the ANTA MACH 4, both shoes have very nice traditional rides and yet have excellent vibration dampening despite not having very high stack numbers. By way of comparison, the OG ASICS Metaspeed Edge has the same heel stack as the ANTA MACH 4 at a measured 33mm including sockliner, and the MACH 4 feels way more cushioned.

Derek’s Score: 8.83 / 10 

Ride 8.5 (50%) Fit 9 (30%) Value 9.5 (15%) Style 8.5 (5%)

Smiles 😊😊😊1/2 

4 Comparisons

Adidas Adios 6 (RTR Review)

I wear US9.5 in both shoes. Both shoes are quite similar when it comes down to stack numbers and weight. The Adios 6 feels more even in terms of weight distribution, but the midsole is firmer and a bit more slappy. I would say the Adios 6 has a slightly better upper lockdown. Overall, in terms of cushioning, the ANTA MACH 4 is better, but if I were doing workouts, the Adios 6 feels a bit more responsive. I understand the Adios 6 is several years old, but I haven’t bought any of the newer Adios models as the upper heel construct does not look like something I would enjoy.

New Balance Fuel Cell Rebel v4 (RTR Review)

I wear US9.5 in both shoes. The Rebel 4 is a noticeably lighter shoe, with the same stack numbers. That said, I do find that the MACH 4 is just a little bit springier underfoot so the ride is a little livelier. Both shoes fit me very well. I would say the Rebel has a slightly wider fit if you need it. Between the two shoes, I find the MACH 4 to have a snappier ride through the toes, because of the plastic cage, and maybe a denser midsole. For easy runs, it is pretty much a wash. For faster runs, I think the MACH 4 is just a little bit better at holding pace. The MACH 4 comes in a bit cheaper than the Rebel 4 for what it’s worth.

Nike ZoomX Streakfly (RTR Review)

I wear US9.5 in both shoes. The Streakfly is a more pricey shoe, and is significantly softer due to the ZoomX foam, and actually bottoms out quite a lot for my running style, so it feels harsher than the MACH 4. I think for track workouts, the Streakfly would be a better option as it is lighter and nimbler, but for road workouts, the MACH 4 just has superior cushioning and vibration dampening.

Saucony Kinvara 14 (RTR Review)

I wear US9.5 in both shoes. The K14 feels quite firm underfoot despite having mostly exposed foam on the outsole. The MACH 4 is softer and springier, but is also about almost 2 ounces heavier. I think the MACH 4 has superior vibration dampening and is just a better all-rounder for most people. Incidentally, in my size the stack comparisons are MACH 4 33/27 vs Kinvara 14 32/28 so quite close.

Available in Southeast Asia


Shopee (Singapore)


Shopee (Malaysia)


Shopee (Philippines)



Tester Profile

Derek is in his 40’s and trains 70-80 miles per week at 7 to 8 minute pace in mostly tropical conditions in Singapore. He has a 2:39 marathon PR from the 2022 Zurich Marathon.

Samples were provided at no charge for review purposes. RoadTrail Run has affiliate partnerships and may earn commission on products purchased via shopping links in this article. These partnerships do not influence our editorial content. The opinions herein are entirely the authors'.

Comments and Questions Welcome Below! Please let us know mileage, paces, race distances, and current preferred shoes

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Anonymous said...

Thanks for introducing me to this company - ANTA and another thorough RTR review. Though - I struggle to understand why Bekele signing a sponsorship contract gives the brand “major street credibility”.

Anonymous said...

For whatever reason, when I open this mobile site here in Australia, ads for “Babyboo” clothing come up. I cannot read this site in front of my children because their ads are fairly close to pornography. If you could look into this, that would be great, as I doubt there is little to any crossover in marketing between the running shoe segment and the tight dress for women with gigantic fake boobs segment.