New Balance 237 vs 327 Shoes Compared [What’s the Difference?]


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I recently put my hands on both the New Balance 237 and the New Balance 327 shoes so that I could compare them on comfort, sizing, and design. When comparing New Balance 327 vs 237 there are some significant differences that may affect which one is right for you.

Quickly, this is what jumps out the most to me:

  • These shoes are similar in that they are both inspired by retro running shoes. Two other styles that are also inspired by retro running shoes are the New Balance 720 (click here to view) which is even more lightweight than the 237 and 327, and the New Balance XC-72 (click here to view) which has a modern, “time-bending design”.
  • Despite both having a thick foam midsole, they aren’t as “squishy” under the foot as modern running shoes. If you prefer that “squishy” comfort, I would recommend the New Balance FuelCell Rebel (click here to view) or the New Balance Fresh Foam 1080 (click here to view) which are my two favorite options.
  • I found these 237 and the 327 to respond similarly on my foot. Both are made with lightweight, flexible suede/mesh uppers, and feature a thick foam midsole for support. Click here to see the video of how these shoes respond on a foot.
  • Although both are flexible, I found the New Balance 327 to be a bit more flexible than the 237. This is where you can see the videos I took comparing the flexibility by bending and twisting the shoes.
  • I found these two shoes to weigh the exact same (both weigh 0.77 pounds per shoe for a size 12 men’s). Although these are very lightweight, there are options by New Balance that weigh even less. Click here to read more about weight.
  • These shoes have a very similar fit and sizing. Click here to jump to the sizing section where I use side-by-side photos to compare these shoes to other popular brands so you can choose the right size.
  • Perhaps the biggest difference regarding design is the 327 has a deeper lug outsole that also wraps up the backside heel of the shoe (the 237 has a more traditional design).

In this article let’s take a closer look at the New Balance 237 vs 327 by using the videos and pictures I took of the shoes that I own.

Table of Contents

New Balance 237 vs 327 Design

The 237 and 327 are inspired by retro running shoes, which means both styles have a lightweight, flexible design.

How They Respond on Foot

To give you an idea how these shoes responds on a foot, here I am wearing mine:

As you can see above, both options are made with a lightweight suede/mesh upper, which allows the shoe to be flexible, and the foam midsole on the two shoes is very similar in thickness.

Although these shoes are comfortable, they aren’t as “squishy” under the foot as other types of modern New Balance running shoes. For comparison, here is one of the most comfortable options, the New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080v12:

Flexibility

In the videos below, I tried to capture how flexible these shoes are:


I found the 327 to be a bit more flexible (and twistable) than the 237. Now, to be clear, the 237 does not feel stiff on the foot, but the 327 is a bit more responsive.

Padding

The 237 has more padding around the collar. It also has an exposed foam tongue while the 327 has a retro nylon tongue. If you prefer padding around the collar and tongue, the 237 will be the better option. Here are mine (237 first):

new-balance-shoe-237-padded-collar
new-balance-327-padded-collar

Insole Thickness

Yes, both the 237 and the 327 have removable insoles, so you can clean or swap them as needed. First, here is the insole of the 237:

new-balance-237-insole
new-balance-237-insole-measurement

And below, is the insole for the New Balance 327:

new-balance-327-insole-photo
new-balance-327-insole-measurement

By my measurements, the insole thickness was basically the exact same.

New Balance 237 vs 327 Design

Sole Height

Below is the height measurements I took for the New Balance 237 and 327 (237 first):

new-balance-237-sole-height
new-balance-327-sole-height

As you can see, they have a similar heel height (approximately 1.5 inches for a men’s size 12 shoe). And the overall height of the shoe itself is similar.

Outsole Width

Below is the width measurements I took for the New Balance 237 and 327 (237 first):

new-balance-shoe-237-outsole
new-balance-327-outsole

As you can see, although the widest point of the outsole has a similar measurement, the overall design of the outsole is quite different. The 327 has a deeper lug, and narrows under the middle of the foot. Both shoes I found to have average width (more on sizing later).

Weight

Despite some design differences, I found these shoes to weigh the exact same. Here I am weighing my 237 and 327 shoes, which are men’s size 12 shoes (237 first):

new-balance-237-weight
new-balance-327-weight

Recently I tried over 30 different types of New Balance shoes. Overall, these shoes are one of the most lightweight options that New Balance offers. Click here to see how the weight of the New Balance 237 and 327 shoes compare to other New Balance shoes.

Heel Drop

When I searched for New Balance 237 and 327 heel drop information, I couldn’t find solid data anywhere. New Balance (at the time I am publishing this article) does not list the heel drop information on the product pages for these two shoes.

I decided to measure the 237 and 327 heel drop myself. What I found was the heel-to-toe drop of these shoes is very similar, and is in that upper-mid drop to high drop range.

When I measured my New Balance 327 shoes using an 8-inch Digital Outside Caliper, I found the heel drop to be approximately 10mm. When I measured my New Balance 237 shoes using an 8-inch Digital Outside Caliper, I found the heel drop to be approximately 9mm.

It is important to understand that although I tried my best to get accurate measurements, the best way to measure heel drop is to cut the shoes in half and use an industrial caliper. Obviously, I didn’t want to destroy my shoes, but this is a convenient alternative way to measure heel drop.

The point is, think of these heel drop numbers as an approximation. For all official measurements, it would be best to reach out to New Balance directly.

Here I am measuring the heel drop of the New Balance 237 shoes:

new-balance-237-heel-drop
new-balance-237-heel-drop-measurements

Here I am measuring the heel drop of the New Balance 327 shoes:

new-balance-327-heel-drop
new-balance-327-heel-drop-measurement

New Balance 237 vs 327 Sizing

Overall, I found these two shoes to have a very similar fit (New Balance Sizing Explained). Here they are side-by-side (237 on left):

new-balance-327-vs-237-sizing

New Balance 237 Sizing Photos

To read more, visit my New Balance 237 Sizing Guide.

New Balance 237 vs Adidas Superstar Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-adidas-superstar-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Adidas Gazelle Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-adidas-gazelle-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Under Armour HOVR Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-under-armour-hovr-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Converse Chucks Sizing

new-balance-237-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Reebok Classics Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-reebok-classics-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Adidas 2k Boost Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-adidas-2k-boost-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Vans UltraRange Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-vans-ultrarange-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Vans Slip On Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-vans-slip-on-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Vans Old Skool Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-vans-old-skool-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Skechers Go Walk Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-skechers-go-walk-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Saucony Shadow 6000 Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-saucony-shadow-6000-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Numeric 272 Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-numeric-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Nike Cortez Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-nike-cortez-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Nike Blazer Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-nike-blazer-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Nike Air Max Excee Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-nike-air-max-excee-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Nike Air Max 90 Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-nike-air-max-90-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Nike Air Force 1 Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-nike-af1-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Hey Dude Wally Sox Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-hey-dude-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Crocs Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-crocs-sizing

New Balance 237 vs Converse Pro Leather Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-converse-pro-leather-sizing

New Balance 237 vs 5740 Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-5740-sizing

New Balance 237 (right) vs 997 Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-997-sizing

New Balance 237 (right) vs 990 Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-990-sizing

New Balance 237 (right) vs 574 Sizing

new-balance-237-vs-574-sizing

New Balance 237 (left) vs XC-72 Sizing

new-balance-xc-72-vs-237-sizing

New Balance 237 (left) vs 992 Sizing

new-balance-992-vs-237-sizing

New Balance 237 (left) vs 993 Sizing

new-balance-993-vs-237-sizing

New Balance 237 (left) vs 720 Sizing

new-balance-720-vs-237-sizing

New Balance 327 Sizing Photos

To read more, visit my New Balance 327 Sizing Guide.

New Balance 327 (right) vs Adidas 2k Boost Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-adidas-2k-boost-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Reebok Classics Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-reebok-classics-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Vans UltraRange Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-vans-ultrarange-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Vans Slip On Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-vans-slip-on-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Vans Old Skool Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-vans-old-skool-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Skechers Go Walk Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-skechers-go-walk-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Saucony Shadow 6000 Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-saucony-shadow-6000-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Nike Cortez Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-nike-cortez-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Nike Blazer Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-nike-blazer-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Nike Air Max Excee Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-nike-air-max-excee-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Nike Air Max 90 Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-nike-air-max-90-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Nike Air Force 1 Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-nike-af1-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Hey Dude Wally Sox Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-hey-dude-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Crocs Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-crocs-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Converse Pro Leather Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-converse-pro-leather-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Converse Chucks Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-converse-chucks-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Adidas Superstar Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-adidas-superstar-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Adidas Gazelle Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-adidas-gazelle-sizing

New Balance 327 (right) vs 5740 Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-5740-sizing

New Balance 327 (right) vs 997 Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-997-sizing

New Balance 327 (right) vs 990 Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-990-sizing

New Balance 327 (right) vs 574 Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-574-sizing

New Balance 327 (right) vs XC-72 Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-xc-72-sizing

New Balance 327 vs Under Armour HOVR Sizing

new-balance-327-vs-under-armour-sizing

New Balance 237 vs 327 Conclusion

Both the 237 and 327 are inspired by retro running shoes. Both have a lightweight, flexible design, but I found the 327 to be a bit more flexible.

They respond similarly on the foot. Although these shoes were inspired by retro running shoes, if you are looking for running shoes, a more modern style will likely be best (I like the New Balance FuelCell Rebel and the New Balance 1080 the best).

One major design difference is the 327 has a deeper lug, and the outsole itself wraps up the back heel of the shoe. The 327 outsole also narrows near the middle of the foot and the 237 does not.

Overall, these shoes are very similar in that they are lightweight casual shoes that provide a comfortable fit for everyday-use. The 237 has a more traditional design that blends in, and the 327 style stands out a bit, with the unique outsole pattern on the back of the shoe.

Paul Johnson

Paul is a lead content creator for Workwear Command. He has had several blue-collar jobs which have provided him a wide range of experience with tools and gear. He also has a business degree and has spent time in business casual office settings.

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