The leisure shoe, which forms part of the company's Yellow Series, was released on 1 April and is on sale in London and in other major European and North American cities. It carries the image of a character called Ray Fong, designed by graffiti artist Barry McGee, who is half-Chinese.
But the image has outraged representatives of Chinese groups and bloggers, who say the company should drop the product as it is offensive and racist.
The shoe is one of a range that includes 42 shoes in seven colours. Artists designed most of them. Mr McGee said the image was based on how he looked as an eight-year-old. He told The Washington Post: "You have to look at it as a piece of artwork." He added: "I never saw this coming."
The Organisation of Chinese Americans has received more than 40 complaints about the trainer and has sent a letter of complaint to Adidas demanding the removal of the item from sale.
An Adidas spokesperson said: "It was not the intention of Adidas... nor McGee, to offend any individual or group, as we pride ourselves on being a multicultural organisation."Reuse content