DISCLAIMER! The pictures in the article have been sourced from a variety of places. I’ve tried to credit the owner of the shoes where I know, but apologies if I have not.
The AS series were produced around 1980 and with the Japanese market in mind. Different models were produced in different countries and were given a number corresponding to their style. Each of the models were based on an already existing design and will no doubt look familiar to you. Despite the fact the shoes were marketed for Japan some of the models were also released in Europe, although information on exactly which ones is a little sketchy. The series is highly desirable these days and is extremely rare to find. As far as I know these are all of the models, although perhaps some remain undiscovered. AS is merely an abbreviation of Adidas in case you were wondering.
1 – AS230 I’m not sure why the series starts at 230, but it does. The 230 were based on the Samba, but in a navy blue suede finish (years before Adidas Germany made them in suede) with different coloured stripes. The shoe also features a row of ventilation holes between the stripes (a common feature on AS models). Thanks to pete Lawton for these Bern CW ones.
2 – Thanks to Greg Howard for these navy with yellow striped versions made in Yugoslavia.
3 – 230’s were also produced in Austria, as these navy-red ones were.
4 – The complete set of 230 colourways.
5 – The AS 240 were virtually the same as the 230 but produced in black suede. I’ve only ever seen these Yugoslavian made pair in a Brussel colourway, but other colours are likely to exist.
6 – The AS 250 are again based on the Samba but feature a white leather upper. Here are a pair from my own collection and made in Austria.
7 – Yugoslavian pair with navy stripes.
8 – The AS 250 colour variants.
9 – The AS 300 were based on the Gazelle and like the earlier models, came in colours which weren’t at the time available on the European Gazelle’s. Here is a pair owned by Pete Lawton in black.
10 – Another from Pete Lawton of red Yugoslavian made 300’s.
11 – AS 300 colours. The 300 is one of the rarer AS models.
12 – The AS 350 don’t have a direct European equivalent, but take out the perforated toe-box and the closest you would get is the Olympia as they share the same shape and sole. Yugoslavian made, this pair comes from, who else, Pete Lawton.
13 – A lovely pair with red stripes, made in Yugoslavia.
14 – The 350s appearing to have only 3 colour variants.
15 – AS 500 – Possibly the only model to be made in Japan, rare and highly desirable. I’m not sure what model they were based on, I can see a bit of Milano, Stratos, Honolulu and Jap Samoa in here, if anyone has any ideas let me know. Not sure who owns this navy pair either, but they are crackers.
16 – A brown pair from Pete Lawton. The 500s were always a single colour.
17 – An amazing pair in burgundy owned by a Russian collector I think.
18 – My pair in sky blue. Unworn when I bought them, but no longer the case.
19 – A very rare grey pair. The only other colour I am aware of was a beige pair.
20 – The Yugoslavian AS 600 appear to be a mish-mash of several TRX models such as the TRX Variant, TRX Trainer and TRX Lady. The feature a nylon mesh upper and a multi-studied outsole. Pete Lawton owns this pair.
21 – Another pair from Pete. AS 600 were also released in the UK and the Netherlands. Maybe Adidas thought they were too good to stay in Japan?
22 – A navy-sky blue pair of 600s. The 600s are the only shoe in the series to have been re-issued (in 2006).
23 – In olive with beige stripes. The 600 were released in 8 different colourways.
24 – The AS 700 were manufactured in Austria and Yugoslavia and were a variation of the Gazelle Indoor, featuring the same sole but in a range of remarkable colours. Here is a picture of Acid Casuals pair in a great colourway.
25 – A pair in green with a think beige or egg-shell coloured stripes. From Gregg Howard.
26 – Navy with white striped AS 700 with a variant to the tongue. These were commercially released in Europe as well.
27 – AS 700 grey with black stripes.
28 – Owned by a Malaysian collector (possibly Gomogi) I am told these were made in Japan.
29 – Fantastic brown-beige coloured version of the 700.
30 – The AS 800 were of course based on the Tobacco, made in France and came in 7 numbered colour variations. They have ventilation holes between the stripes which of course is not feature of the French Tobacco models and the colours are brilliant once again. I set Lee Watson the challenge of getting all of these, but he is yet to do it. AS 800-1 in beige.
31 – AS 800-2 in Tobacco brown
32 – AS 800-3 in dark brown
33 – AS 800-4 in olive green
34 – AS 800-5 in Tahiti blue
35 – AS 800-6 in navy blue. Possibly the rarest version?
36 – AS 800-7 in grey, my favourite colour of these.
37 – And finally rounding off the series AS 900 made in Germany and based on the Montreal 76. Danny Hale owns these absolute corkers in tobacco and beige.
38 – A fairly dodgy picture of a blue pair. The only other colour variation were a pair on black with white stripes.
Neil Selvey runs a blog dedicated to vintage adidas & Puma, for more articles like this, check it out; http://vintageadidasandpuma.blogspot.co.uk/