Discovering the best cycling shoes can transform your riding experience, propelling you to new heights of comfort, performance, and style. Whether you're a seasoned cyclist seeking top-of-the-line craftsmanship or a newbie searching for the perfect entry-level option, we've got you covered. From the sleek and speedy Specialized S-Works Torch to the versatile Lake CX238 Wide Cycling Shoes, we've scoured the market to bring you a comprehensive guide that caters to all budgets and foot sizes. Get ready to peddle your way to shoe nirvana as we delve into the world of the best cycling shoes, designed to elevate your ride to extraordinary heights.
Specialized S-Works Torch
Upper: Made with adaptive materials | Cleat design: 3-hole | Closure: Dial lace system | Weight: 0.99 pounds
The Specialized S-Works Torch cycling shoes are perfect for elite road cyclists looking for optimal speed, power transfer, and comfort. These shoes are designed with meticulous attention to detail, offering a lightweight, sleek, and aerodynamic profile that serious riders love.
The carbon baseplate of the shoe is wide and incredibly stiff, ensuring that every ounce of power you generate is translated into acceleration and responsive pedaling. The upper part of the shoe is lightweight and breathable, adapting to the shape of your foot while maintaining durability in reinforced areas.
The shoe's asymmetrical heel construction keeps your foot securely in place and your knees properly aligned, minimizing unwanted movement and adding to your overall control. With two Boa snap dials, you can make micro-adjustments to achieve a customized fit and eliminate any slippage that may rob you of power.
Not only are these shoes performance-driven, but they also have a sleek design that reduces drag, making them a top choice for riders seeking marginal gains in speed and efficiency. With clean lines and bold color options, they add a touch of style to any cycling kit.
- Comfortable and supportive
- Stiff and efficient
- Wider in mid and forefoot than other road shoes
Entry-level cycling shoes
If you're looking for more affordable options, check out our guide to the best budget cycling shoes.
(Image credit: Paul Grele)
We were incredibly impressed with the retro race shoe design of the dhb Dorica road bike shoes. The combination of laces and a carbon sole at such an affordable price point is remarkable.
During testing, we found that the power transfer matched up to shoes three times its price. While the heel cup wasn't as snug as more expensive options, it didn't affect performance when out of the saddle climbing.
The insoles are on the thin side, but the overall fit of the shoe is relatively wide and flat, making it a good option for riders with stability issues who may want to consider aftermarket footbeds or insoles.
With tough competition from other options like the Shimano RC3 shoes and the Specialized Torch, the dhb Dorica shoes hold their own with a carbon sole, lightweight construction, and stylish looks. These are the perfect cycling shoes for any budget.
Read more: Read the full review of dhb Dorica Carbon
(Image credit: Future)
Shimano has brought the technology of their top-of-the-line S-Phyre shoes to the more affordable RC3 model. The price reduction comes from swapping out one BOA dial for a Velcro strap and using the L6 model dials, which ratchet tighter, unlike the IP1 dials on the S-Phyre that allow for more precise tension adjustment.
However, this does not sacrifice functionality. The comfort of these shoes is impeccable, with no hotspots forming during long rides, whether outdoors or indoors. The many perforations on the upper provide a cooling effect, allowing air to flow in and keep your feet cool.
Whether the extreme breathability is a good or bad thing will depend on when and where you ride. The Shimano RC3 shoes come in multiple sizes, with options for both men and women, as well as wider fit versions. While the color options are limited, these shoes offer a great balance of cost and performance.
Read more: Read the full review of Shimano RC5 cycling shoes
(Image credit: Future)
The Giro Savix II shoes offer both functionality and style at a reasonable price. While they don't have flashy carbon soles, the rubber/plastic sole unit is stiff enough and more durable than a carbon sole. These shoes are versatile with both two-bolt and three-bolt cleat mounting options.
The synthetic upper is well-ventilated and copes well with hot summer rides. It's also padded for added comfort. The closure system consists of a single Boa L6 dial and a front Velcro strap, providing a secure and precise fit.
The fit of the shoe is roomy, accommodating various foot shapes, and the soles have proven to be durable during testing. These shoes are a great choice for those looking for entry-level options.
For more entry-level choices, check out our guide to the best budget cycling shoes.
Read more: Read the full review of Giro Savix II road cycling shoes
Lake CX238 Wide Cycling Shoes
Upper: Made with leather and mesh | Cleat design: 3-bolt | Closure: Dial lace system | Weight: 1.3 pounds
The Lake CX238 cycling shoes are perfect for cyclists who want a personalized fit and exceptional comfort for races and endurance rides. These shoes are available in a wide range of lengths and also offer a wide-width version for riders with larger feet who struggle to find the right fit.
The full-grain leather upper conforms to the shape of your foot over time, ensuring a customized fit that eliminates pressure points and provides long-lasting comfort. The dual Boa dial lace system allows for precise and micro-adjustable closure, allowing you to tailor the fit to your liking. The strategically placed mesh panels enhance breathability, keeping your feet cool and dry even in hot conditions.
The carbon fiber sole is stiff and ensures optimal energy transfer to the pedals, allowing for powerful accelerations and efficient pedaling. The cleat mounting platform is adjustable, maximizing your pedaling efficiency and optimizing biomechanics.
The reinforced heel counter provides stability and prevents unwanted movement, enhancing control during sprints and technical descents. The replaceable heel and toe bumpers protect the shoes from wear and tear, extending their lifespan.
- Wide fit available in all sizes
- Stiff sole
- Somewhat expensive
- Heavier than some road shoes
At Forbes Vetted, we understand the importance of finding cycling shoes that offer comfort, performance, and durability. To provide you with reliable information, we conducted thorough research and analyzed online reviews from trusted sources. This allowed us to gather insights from real cyclists. We also conducted rigorous testing ourselves, evaluating each pair of cycling shoes in various terrain and riding conditions.
With our comprehensive analysis, you can be confident that we have selected the finest cycling shoes on the market. We have covered a wide range of options to cater to different cycling styles and preferences, whether you're a road racer, mountain biker, or urban commuter. Our top picks are regularly updated to include the latest models available. The most recent update was in July 2023.
Other Bike Stories To Shop
Giro Empire ACC Shoes
Upper: Made with mesh and microfiber | Cleat design: 3-bolt | Closure: Lace | Weight: 0.93 pounds
The Giro Empire ACC cycling shoes combine classic lace-up design with modern technology to deliver a comfortable and high-performance experience on the bike.
The lace-up closure system allows for precise adjustments, ensuring a snug and secure fit that conforms to your foot's unique shape. The roomy toe box accommodates a variety of foot shapes and reduces pressure points, providing enhanced comfort during long rides.
The lightweight and breathable mesh and microfiber upper molds to your foot while wicking away moisture, keeping your feet dry and comfortable. The carbon fiber sole offers excellent power transfer, allowing you to efficiently convert your pedaling efforts into forward momentum.
The Giro Empire ACC is available in women-specific sizes and is built on a women's-specific last, providing a better fit compared to unisex options.
- Comfortable and supportive fit
- Stiff and efficient sole
- Breathable upper
- Laces can be difficult to adjust while clipped in
The Shimano RC1 cycling shoes enhance your riding experience without breaking the bank. Despite their affordable price, these shoes offer a great balance of comfort, performance, and durability, making them an excellent choice for beginners, casual riders, and those on a budget.
The cycling shoes feature a simple yet reliable three-strap Velcro closure system that allows for easy and quick adjustments. This ensures a secure and snug fit, preventing foot movement and minimizing the risk of discomfort or hotspots during long rides. The synthetic leather upper is supple and supportive, providing ample comfort for extended periods on the bike.
The fiberglass-reinforced nylon sole delivers efficient power transfer, effectively converting your pedaling efforts into forward momentum. While not as stiff as carbon fiber soles found in higher-end models, the RC1 sole still offers sufficient rigidity for most recreational and intermediate cyclists.
Reinforced toe and heel areas protect the shoes from scuffs and abrasions, ensuring a longer lifespan even with regular use. The Shimano RC1 is available in both men's and women's versions.
- Comfortable fit
- Secure closure with three Velcro straps
- Affordable pricing
- Less breathable in hot weather
Upper: Vegan materials | Cleat design: 2-bolt | Closure: Lace | Weight: N/A
The Adidas Velosamba is a stylish and versatile cycling shoe that combines classic sneaker aesthetics with cycling-specific features, perfect for everyday riding in urban environments. These shoes effortlessly transition from the bike to casual settings, eliminating the need to carry an extra pair of shoes when heading to the office or meeting friends for lunch.
Featuring a vegan-friendly and breathable upper with ample ventilation, the Velosamba keeps your feet cool and dry during rides and walks. The lace-up closure system allows for a customizable and secure fit, while the padded collar and tongue provide additional comfort and support during extended wear.
The non-marking rubber outsole offers reliable traction on and off the bike, making it suitable for walking and navigating urban environments. The Velosambas are available in various color combinations to seamlessly match your everyday attire.
- Super stylish
- Comfortable both on and off the bike
- Compatible with SPD cleats
- Not as stiff as some cycling shoes
Pearl Izumi Expedition Shoes
Upper: Made with rubber and plastic | Cleat design: 2-bolt | Closure: Dial lace system | Weight: 1.59 pounds
The Pearl Izumi Expedition gravel shoes are a versatile and comfortable option for cyclists who want a shoe that can handle both road and gravel riding. These shoes combine features of both road and mountain bike shoes, striking a balance between comfort and performance on any terrain.
The BOA dial lace system provides a precise and secure fit, with an independent forefoot strap for separate adjustments. The full-length carbon composite plate in the outsole ensures efficient power transfer, maximizing every ounce of effort you put into pedaling. The two-bolt cleat system makes them compatible with mountain bike pedals and allows for easy walking off the bike. The rubber lugs on the outsole offer exceptional traction on gravel, dirt, and wet surfaces, providing confidence and control in hike-a-bike situations.
- Versatile for both road and off-road riding
- Stiff and efficient sole
- Good grip on a variety of surfaces
- Secure BOA dial lace closure
- Not as light as some other gravel shoes
Best cycling shoes for £100
The Boardman Carbon shoe offers excellent features and value for money at £80. It features a durable all-carbon sole and a twin Atop dial adjustment system, similar to the more expensive Boa system. The shoe also has a replaceable heel bumper for added durability. The upper part of the shoe is padded for comfort and has ample venting to keep your feet cool. Compared to other cycling shoes, the Boardman Carbon shoe has a slightly wider toe box, providing extra space.
- Read our full Boardman Carbon cycling shoe review
The Bont Motion shoe offers excellent stiffness with its fibreglass sole, making it a great choice for cyclists. It is slightly heavier than its competitors due to the fibreglass sole but provides an optimal power transfer. The shoe features Bont's anatomic last, which offers a slightly wider and more comfortable fit. While it uses Velcro straps instead of dials, the Bont Motion shoe still provides great value for money.
- Read our full Bont Motion shoe review
dhb Aeron Carbon Road Dial
The dhb Aeron Carbon Road Dial shoe is a high-quality carbon-soled road shoe available at an affordable price of £74. Its carbon sole provides excellent stiffness and efficiency while pedaling. The shoe features a combination of Velcro straps and dhb's Atop dial closure system for a secure fit. It is recommended to go down a size due to sizing coming up small. The synthetic uppers of the shoe offer good padding and comfort.
- Read our full dhb Aeron Carbon Road Dial shoe review
Bont Riot Buckle
The Bont Riot Buckle shoe offers exceptional performance at a bargain price of £99 / $129. It is one of the lightest shoes in its price range, weighing only 632g for a pair of EU size 45s. The shoe features a carbon-reinforced fibreglass sole, providing efficient power transfer. The fit of the shoe can be optimized by baking it for a custom fit. Once customized, the shoe offers great comfort and a secure closure system. The uppers of the shoe are slightly stiff but still provide a comfortable riding experience.
- Read our full Bont Riot Buckle shoe review
Triban GRVL 500
The Triban GRVL 500 shoes are an affordable option packed with features. Priced at £50, these lace-up SPD shoes offer great value for money. The shoe features a nylon sole with fibreglass reinforcement, ensuring stiffness and walking grip. It provides excellent comfort during long rides and has a reasonably stiff sole without being overly punishing. The shoe's design might cause a slight heel raise during walking or intense pedaling, but overall, it has no significant drawbacks. It is a versatile option suitable for various types of riding, from commuting to challenging off-road adventures.
- Read our full Triban GRVL 500 shoe review
Scott Road Comp Boa
The Scott Road Comp Boa is an excellent entry-level shoe available at a great price of £100 / $120 / AU$150. Despite being Scott's most affordable Boa-fastener road shoe, it delivers impressive performance. The shoe features a nylon and glass fibre composite sole, offering sufficient stiffness for everyday use. It provides a comfortable fit with a more generous sizing compared to Scott's higher-end models. The Road Comp Boa has an elegant appearance with a variety of color options.
- Read our full Scott Road Comp Boa cycling shoe review
Specialized Torch 1.0
The Specialized Torch 1.0 is a highly rated entry-level road shoe that offers great comfort and performance. Priced at £90 / $110, it features a Boa L6 dial and crossed cord top closure, replacing traditional Velcro straps. This design change reduces the weight of the shoe by approximately 50g per pair. The shoe has a stiff nylon composite sole, ensuring efficient power transfer while remaining comfortable. Specialized's Body Geometry insoles provide additional support to the foot's natural curves. The Torch 1.0 is a lightweight and comfortable option for long rides, although it lacks a two-bolt cleat option for commuters.
- Read our full Specialized Torch 1.0 cycling shoe review
Triban RC 520
The Triban RC 520 is a tough and comfortable road shoe suitable for long rides and commuting. Priced at £70, it offers excellent value for money. The shoe performs well even on gravel rides, as long as the terrain is not too rough or muddy. It features simple laces and straps for an effective closure system. However, the heel may raise slightly during walking if the laces are not tightened properly. While it is not the lightest shoe, it provides durability and reliability at an affordable price.
- Read our full Triban RC 520 shoe review
Top Cycling Shoes Under £150
Bont Riot Road Boa
Bont's Riot Road Boa shoe, priced at £150 or $182, offers a heat-mouldable fit and boasts a supremely stiff carbon sole design. This shoe brings Bont's distinctive design philosophy to a more affordable price range.
The tub-shaped carbon soles provide exceptional stiffness, creating an efficient and supportive pedalling platform.
Bont claims that the Riot Road Boa offers a more anatomical fit right out of the box compared to other cycling shoes. Additionally, the fit can be fully customized at home by warming them in the oven for 20 minutes at 70°C/160°F, followed by tightening them up.
It's worth noting that our tester found that the Riot Road Boa runs slightly smaller than other shoes, so it's important to carefully check the fit when purchasing.
For a comprehensive review of the Bont Riot Road Boa cycling shoe, check out this link.
Fizik Tempo R5 Powerstrap
The Fizik Tempo R5 Powerstrap, priced at £110 or $120, is an extremely comfortable road shoe that's perfect for longer rides. It features Velcro straps that ensure even tension across the feet.
The soles on the Tempo R5 Powerstrap are the same as those used on Fizik's more expensive R5B model. While they may not be the stiffest, they offer adequate support and have non-replaceable toe and heel bumpers.
The twin Velcro straps provide reliable and consistent tension, eliminating the need for Boa dials.
Weighing in at 626g for a pair of EU45s, these shoes might not be the lightest, but their performance is well worth the price.
To read a detailed review of the Fizik Tempo R5 Powerstrap, click here.
The Udog Tensione is a brand-new Italian cycling shoe available for £130/€175/$170/AU$225. Udog, short for Underdog, is a direct-to-consumer shoe company, which allows them to offer great value.
The Tensione features a carbon composite/nylon blend outsole that offers a comfortable yet snug fit with twin inverted V-shaped ribbons on either side of the midfoot and laces.
These shoes provide sufficient warmth for spring rides in various weather conditions without becoming overly hot during the summer. Their road sole offers excellent efficiency and all-day comfort.
One downside to consider is that since they are only available for purchase online, you won't be able to try them on before making a decision.
To learn more about the Udog Tensione shoes, check out the full review here.
Fizik R5 Tempo Overcurve
The Fizik R5 Tempo Overcurve shoe is well-ventilated to keep your feet cool, although there are no openings in the toe or composite sole.
The "Overcurve" part of the name refers to a staggered collar that wraps around the ankle, accommodating the different heights of the ankle bone on each side of the leg.
With a single Boa dial and a Velcro strap, these shoes offer easy adjustment and a secure fit. While they might not provide the same level of adjustability as two Boa dials, they are still highly functional.
Weighing 560g (size 42), the R5 Tempo Overcurve shoes are not the lightest option available. However, they compensate for this with their wide range of colors and half sizes, giving you plenty of options to choose from.
For a comprehensive review of the Fizik R5 Tempo Overcurve cycling shoes, click here.
Mavic Cosmic Boa
Priced at £115 or $143, the Mavic Cosmic Boa shoes feature a nylon and fiberglass Energy Comp sole that scores 50 on Mavic's "index of energy transfer" (which goes up to 100).
With a single Boa closure system, these shoes have a clean and minimalist appearance while providing a comfortable and secure fit.
Although the nylon/fiberglass soles have a mid-level rating for stiffness, they are more than sufficient for most rides. The uppers feature over 100 laser-cut vents, ensuring excellent ventilation.
With their sleek design, the Mavic Cosmic Boa shoes exude a professional look, especially in white. However, it's important to note that Mavic shoes tend to have a close fit, so you might want to consider going up half a size.
To read the full review of the Mavic Cosmic Boa cycling shoes, click here.
Pearl Izumi Tour
The Pearl Izumi Tour shoes, priced at £120 or $130, offer a unique lace-up design that presents a retro aesthetic.
Weighing 504g (size 42), these shoes provide a tight and secure fit. The laces and numerous vents on both the upper and sole contribute to ventilation and ensure cool feet throughout your rides.
The nylon sole is reinforced by a large carbon plate under the cleat, striking a good balance between stiffness and flexibility. The shoe rates 8/14 on Pearl Izumi's stiffness index, making it suitable for all-day rides.
For a detailed review of the Pearl Izumi Tour cycling shoes, click here.
The Shimano RC5 is a mid-tier road cycling shoe that inherits many of its technologies from Shimano's professional-level S-Phyre racing shoe.
Priced at £130, these shoes feature stiff carbon soles and elegant lines, making them both performant and aesthetically pleasing.
The new seamless midsole design reduces weight and stack height, while the carbon-reinforced composite soles offer ample cleat position adjustment and toe vents for ventilation.
The wrap-around uppers, free of a traditional tongue, close via a single Boa dial and a lower Velcro strap, ensuring a comfortable and precise fit.
Furthermore, these shoes are highly breathable, with generous venting. They are available in various sizes, including wide fit options.
For a comprehensive review of the Shimano RC5 cycling shoes, click here.
Van Rysel RR900
The Van Rysel RR900 is the top shoe in Decathlon's road shoe range, offering a feature-filled design at a bargain price of £120.
Equipped with two Atop dial closures and a carbon sole that provides impressive stiffness, these shoes deliver excellent value.
The synthetic uppers are perforated on each side and the tongue, ensuring sufficient ventilation. It's worth noting, though, that the toe lacks any openings.
In terms of build quality, the Van Rysel RR900 shoes are well-made and come in a range of eye-catching iridescent colors.
With a weight of 592g (size 42), they might not be the lightest option available, but their stiffness and performance are commendable.
For a detailed review of the Van Rysel RR900 cycling shoes, click here.
Top Cycling Shoes Under £200
Specialized Torch 3.0
The Specialized Torch 3.0 shoe, priced at £200 or $200, offers exceptional performance, weight, and comfort.
Inspired by the S-Works 7 shoe, the Torch 3.0 features a similar fit system with two Boa dials and a Velcro strap across the forefoot, allowing for easy and precise adjustments.
While putting on the shoe requires unhooking the top Boa lace from its anchor, it provides an excellent fit once worn. The generous fit, arch support, and heel cup support ensure a secure and comfortable experience during climbing or sprinting.
Despite its FACT carbon sole rating of 8.5 (compared to the S-Works shoe's 15), the Torch 3.0 remains plenty stiff for optimal power transfer.
For a detailed review of the Specialized Torch 3.0 cycling shoes, click here.
The Shimano RC7, priced at £189.99, €199.99, or $240, is a highly versatile road cycling shoe that offers remarkable performance at a reasonable price.
Compared to Shimano's top-tier RC902 shoe, the RC7 is slightly heavier and features a carbon fiber composite sole instead of a full carbon sole. However, this slight flex is often more suitable for the majority of riders.
The RC7's uppers have a pleasant feel and utilize a similar wraparound strap design to the RC902. The dual Boa dials allow for adjustable and secure fit customization.
While ventilation could be improved, the RC7 is still a solid choice for various weather conditions.
To read a comprehensive review of the Shimano RC7 cycling shoes, click here.
Best cycling shoes for £300
Specialized S-Works 7 Lace
The Specialized S-Works 7 Lace is an excellent choice for cycling shoes under £300. It combines classic aesthetics with cutting-edge performance. This lace-up shoe is incredibly lightweight and offers exceptional stiffness. Despite its rigidity, it remains comfortable and well-ventilated, allowing for all-day rides. The use of laces contributes to its aerodynamic design. Check out our full review of the Specialized S-Works 7 Lace here.
Giant Surge Pro
The Giant Surge Pro is a pro-level cycling shoe that lives up to high expectations. Priced at £299.99 / €360 / $399, it delivers brilliant performance and versatility. This shoe is worn by the Giant-sponsored Team BikeExchange in the WorldTour. Its sole is incredibly sturdy, ensuring efficient power transfer during intense efforts. The upper is well-ventilated and features adjustable arch supports and insoles for added customization. Read our comprehensive review of the Giant Surge Pro here.
Fizik Tempo Decos Carbon
The Fizik Tempo Decos Carbon is a premium cycling shoe priced at £279 / €290 / $299.99. It offers flawless comfort, thanks to its stiff soles that maintain efficiency without sacrificing comfort. The light and perforated upper, combined with vents in the sole, provide excellent ventilation. This shoe features a single Boa dial for easy tension adjustment. To learn more about the Tempo Decos Carbon, read our detailed review here.
Bontrager Ballista Knit
The Bontrager Ballista Knit is an excellent choice for long rides, particularly in warmer conditions. Priced at £270 / $325, it offers a top-quality, fairweather option. This shoe is ideal for extended rides in warm weather, providing comfort and breathability. It features a single Boa dial for easy adjustment and comes with a durable water-resistant coating. For a detailed review of the Bontrager Ballista Knit, click here.
The Bontrager XXX is the top-of-the-line shoe from Bontrager, worn by professional cyclists. Priced at £300 / $399, it offers a great fit and excellent craftsmanship. The shoe features a stiff sole that maximizes power transfer and under-foot ventilation. It comes with two Boa IP1 dials for easy adjustment and a well-structured insole and heel cup for added comfort. The Bontrager XXX is the complete package for pro-level cycling shoes. Read our in-depth review here.
The DMT KR3 is a nearly-perfect cycling shoe, with the exception of its performance in wet conditions. Priced at £236, it offers incredible comfort but may not be suitable for rainy weather. DMT was a pioneer in full-knit uppers, and the KR3 utilizes this technology to provide a remarkably comfortable fit. The carbon sole offers excellent stability and stiffness. However, it is important to note that the KR3 is more suitable for summer riding due to its breathability and ventilation. For the full review of the DMT KR3, click here.
Fizik R3 Aria
The Fizik R3 Aria is not only aesthetically pleasing but also a high-performing cycling shoe. Priced at £265 / $300, it offers sleek aesthetics and an effective wraparound upper design. The upper is made of highly durable and easy-to-clean materials, perfect for adverse weather conditions. The shoe features a Boa dial for easy fit adjustment and ample ventilation through tiny perforations and vents in the sole. Its pedaling stiffness is impressive, making it a great choice for cyclists looking for both comfort and performance. Read our detailed review of the Fizik R3 Aria here.
Best cycling shoes for wide feet
When it comes to cycling shoes, most brands cater to the "average" foot shape. However, those with wide feet often struggle to find shoes that fit properly due to the rigidity and fixed nature of cycling shoes. Some brands offer "wide fit" options to address this issue, including Sidi, Bont, Shimano, and Lake. Lake, in particular, offers wide toe boxes and custom-molded heel cups to accommodate wide forefeet and narrow ankles.
To ensure you're solving the correct problem before purchasing wide fit shoes, it's recommended to consult with a cycling professional or physiotherapist. In some cases, foot pain may not be due to wide feet but rather issues with foot collapse. Off-the-shelf corrective insoles can provide the necessary support, alleviating the problem. Arch supporting insoles are readily available in local chemists, and custom options are also offered by various brands.
For cyclists with confirmed wide feet, we have tested three top cycling shoe options. One of our testers, Owen Rogers from Cycling Weekly, evaluated these shoes thoroughly. Lake, known for its wide fit options, offers a range of shoes suitable for wide feet. Among them, the CX332 stands out as a top-quality road shoe with excellent craftsmanship and a comfortable fit. Detailed review here.
Another option is the Fizik Tempo Overcurve, which now offers a wide fit version. Fizik caters to a wide range of foot shapes, and the R4 range strikes a balance between performance and comfort. These shoes feature mesh uppers for optimal ventilation and a carbon/nylon composite sole with ample vents. The roomy toe box and secure fit provided by the Overcurve design make them a suitable choice. The shoes are secured by a Boa IP1 dial but could benefit from an additional dial for better adjustability. Read the comprehensive review here.
High-end cycling shoes
(Image credit: Andy Turner)
The lace model of the S-Works line is the most affordable option, but it doesn't compromise on comfort. The lace design provides even pressure distribution, making them perfect for long rides. These shoes also feature the FACT Powerline carbon sole, one of the stiffest platforms available. However, like all lace-up shoes, they lack adjustability on the go and may not be as tight for sprint efforts. Despite this, they offer exceptional comfort for long rides and are a great choice overall. They are stylish, lightweight, and have a supportive design with a stiff sole. The S-Works Lace shoes are also relatively good value compared to other high-end options on the market.
Read more: Specialized S-Works Lace road cycling shoes
(Image credit: Adam Jones)
The Tempo Decos Carbon from Fizik sits between their high-end Vento range and the entry-level Tempo Powerstrap R5 model. These shoes are incredibly versatile and can handle various cycling activities, from training rides to competitions. They feature a polyurethane-laminated material, a mesh upper, and a single bi-directional Li2 BOA dial for the perfect fit. The R2 carbon sole is super stiff and has wide vents for efficient cooling. Additionally, the interior heel has rubberized dimples for added stability. The Tempo Decos Carbon is suitable for riders with a more aggressive riding position, thanks to its improved pedaling efficiency and reduced knee compression. They are lightweight compared to other options in their class and come in eye-catching colors.
Read more: Fizik Tempos Decos Carbon full review
(Image credit: Riley Missel)
The Giro Regime is a great option for women, with a men's version also available. These shoes share many features with Giro's top-spec Imperial shoe but at a lower price. They offer excellent ventilation and have twin Boa dials for a secure fit. The Synchwire upper is non-stretch and provides both comfort and support. The sole combines stiffness, durability, and lightness, while the grippy heel and toe pads further enhance performance. The footbed can be adjusted to suit different arch heights. Overall, the Giro Regime offers a comfortable fit and the right amount of support for fast riding.
Read more: Giro Regime road cycling shoe full review
(Image credit: Future)
Gaerne's Carbon G shoes are a top-of-the-line option with a higher price tag. They offer great stiffness and have a rigid heel cup with an inner surface designed to prevent heel lift. The uppers are extensively perforated for breathability, although they may run slightly hotter compared to shoes with mesh sections. These shoes provide a high-end performance with exceptional power transfer.
Read more: Gaerne Carbon G.STL shoes full review
(Image credit: Andy Turner)
The Specialized S-Works 7 Vent shoes are highly ventilated and incredibly comfortable. They are an upgraded version of the popular S-Works 7 shoes and are suitable for both professional and amateur cyclists. These shoes are lighter than the regular 7s and offer a similar level of stiffness. The upper is made of non-stretch Dyneema with mesh panels for better ventilation and added flexibility. While the enhanced ventilation may result in cold feet during chilly rides, the mesh panels allow for foot expansion in heat, improving comfort during intense rides. Despite their premium price, the S-Works 7 Vent shoes can often be found at a discounted price online, making them a good value option.
Read more: Specialized S-Works 7 Vent road cycling shoes full review
(Image credit: Wiggle)
The Shimano S-Phyre SH-RC902 shoes are designed for racing and offer excellent sole stiffness. While the high level of rigidity may raise concerns about comfort, these shoes strike a balance between performance and support. The shoes have a low profile design and a sole stiffness rating that ranks among Shimano's best. The carbon sole is described as "rigid and responsive," and the shoes are comfortable and efficient for both sprinting and climbing. The double Li2 Boa dial system provides a precise fit, although it may take some time to get used to the wrap-over design. These shoes are a considered purchase but offer impressive details, such as undersole venting.
Read more: Shimano S-Phyre SH-RC 902 road cycling shoes full review
(Image credit: Riley Missel)
The Pearl Izumi PRO Air shoes are lightweight and ideal for riders looking to reduce weight. They weigh just 51g more per shoe compared to the limited edition Specialized S-Works EXOS 99, which weighs under 100 grams. These ultra-lightweight shoes feature a full carbon sole, a laminate-coated mesh upper, and a lace-up closure. The shoes are stiff, highly breathable, and comfortable. While the laces contribute to their minimal weight, they may be less adjustable on the move. The Pro Air shoes offer impressive performance and are considered top-tier cycling shoes. However, they come with a higher price tag.
Read more: Pearl Izumi PRO Air road cycling shoes full review
(Image credit: Future)
The Lake CX403 shoes are heat-moldable and offer a customizable fit. While they are designed as race shoes, they may be stiffer and have a lower volume for everyday use. The uppers combine soft leather and stiff carbon fiber for comfort and support. They can be molded multiple times, making them suitable for riders with unique foot shapes. These shoes from Lake are suitable for those who prioritize customization and a specific fit.
Read more: Lake CX403 shoes cycling shoes full review
(Image credit: Future)
The Specialized S-Works Ares shoe is designed for pro-level sprinters. It features a deep, rigid heel cup and an upper that fits like a sock, eliminating overlaps and reducing weight. These shoes have the same footbed as the highly regarded S-Works 7 shoe. However, they may not be suitable for all foot shapes, particularly those with lower arches. They are designed for maximum performance and are a high-quality option for competitive cyclists.
Read more: Specialized S-Works Ares cycling shoes full review
Five Ten Kestrel Lace-Up Shoes
Upper: Synthetic leather | Cleat design: 2-bolt | Closure: Lace | Weight: 0.89 pounds
It's no surprise to see Five Tens on the feet of professional mountain bikers. They have set the standard for mountain bike shoes and other brands have tried to replicate their success. The Kestrel Lace shoes offer both on and off the bike comfort, making them perfect for bikepacking and mountain biking adventures. They excel in both uphill climbs and technical descents, providing a secure fit, excellent power transfer, and reliable grip. The Stealth rubber outsole, a signature feature of Five Ten shoes, offers unmatched traction on flat pedals. The shoes have a stiff nylon shank for optimal power transfer and efficiency while remaining flexible enough for comfortable walking. The lace closure system allows for a precise and customizable fit, while the synthetic upper is breathable and quick-drying. The shoes are highly resistant to abrasion and wear, ensuring durable performance. They also feature reinforced toe and heel cups for extra protection. The Five Ten Kestrel Lace-Up Shoes are comfortable, versatile, and suitable for various riding styles and conditions.
- Comfortable on and off the bike
- Durable construction
- Versatile for a variety of riding styles and conditions
- Velcro lace holder can get gummed up
Best Cycling Shoes for £400
Shimano S-Phyre RC902
The Shimano S-Phyre RC902 road shoe has an updated fit. Simon Bromley / Immediate Media
- £320 / $425 / AU$549 / €360 as tested
- Stiff and efficient
Adjustable cleat bolt holes allow you to set up your cleat just as you like. There are high-quality insoles with interchangeable arch supports included.
Shimano has updated the fit of the shoe from the previous model. While the wraparound upper and Boa dials make for a highly adjustable fit and great heel retention, we did find the forefoot of the shoe to be a bit narrow.
If you have broader feet or prefer a roomier fit, the wide version could be worth trying.
- Read our full Shimano S-Phyre RC902 shoe review
Sidi Wire 2
Sidi's Wire 2 shoe offers comfort and performance. Sidi
- £330 as tested
- Excellent power transfer
- Comfortable fit
Our tester found them to have quite a narrow fit but was able to easily find the right size by simply going a half size larger than usual, which is something not offered by many other brands.
Sidi persists with its own closure dials, but these work just fine. The only drawback is that they can be a little fiddly to operate with gloves on, compared to a standard Boa dial.
This shoe performs well across the board.
- Read our full Sidi Wire 2 cycling shoes review
Specialized S-Works 7
Specialized's S-Works 7 shoes have a wider fit. Specialized
- £340 / $400 / AU$500 as tested
- Wider fit
- Excellent security and comfort
A roomier toe box and more generous Form Fit, compared to the previous generation, make these shoes a better fit for slightly wider feet.
We found them to be very comfortable, with the Dyneema Mesh uppers and Body Geometry designed footbed providing a secure fit without restricting your feet in any way.
Specialized says the FACT Powerline carbon sole is the stiffest it has ever produced, and it certainly seems to be good enough for Peter Sagan's monstrous power levels.
The S-Works 7 looks stylish too, with a classy finish and lots of color options available.
- Read our full Specialized S-Works 7 cycling shoe review
Bont Helix / Helix Reflex
The Helix shoe tops Bont's range. Bont
- £349 / $399 as tested
- Custom fit
- Lightweight and extremely stiff sole
As with all Bont cycling shoes, they are heat-moldable for a completely custom fit.
They also have the tub-style sole design that lends such extraordinary stiffness. Should you require a bit of extra visibility without sacrificing style, Bont also produces this shoe in a reflective Reflex version.
Bont has thankfully moved to a Boa closure system, which makes for easy adjustment before and during your ride.
The price is high, but this shoe feels unlike anything else on the market.
The level of stiffness is very high, so the Helix is not an endurance-focused shoe. For pure performance though, look no further.
- Read our full Bont Helix cycling shoe review
Bont Vaypor S Hologram
The Bont Vaypor S Hologram is one of the more eye-catching options on the market. David Caudery / Immediate Media
- £325 as tested
- Ultra-thin, ultra-stiff carbon construction
- Heat-moldable upper offers customizable fit
The 'bathtub' carbon construction is super-stiff, and the heat-moldable upper can be remolded an unlimited number of times to tweak the fit.
This 'hologram' version isn't for shy, retiring types, but it adds useful visibility and helps justify the slightly alarming price tag.
- Read our full Bont Vaypor S Hologram shoe review
There's little to fault with DMT's KRSL. Dave Caudery / Our Media
- £330 as tested
- Ultra-light and breathable
- Stunningly comfortable
The shoes are ultra-comfortable, and the stiffness and comfort are perfectly balanced. The fit is so snug that the laces seem like a secondary security measure.
The heel bumper is replaceable, and even on the hottest days, there wasn't a hint of sweat on our tester's feet. The downside is, the shoes can be somewhat chilly on cooler days.
- Read our full DMT KRSL shoe review
Fizik R1 Infinito Knit
Fizik's R1 Infinito Knit shoe is sufficiently stiff for racing. Fizik
- £350 / $376 as tested
- Race-shoe stiff
Despite its water-repellent treatment, the R1 Infinito Knit is definitely more of a fair-weather shoe.
While riding hard in hot temperatures, the stretchy knitted fabric allows your foot to swell with the heat.
The sole is stiff enough for racing. The uppers provide a very comfortable and stable fit.
- Read our full Fizik R1 Infinito Knit cycling shoe review
Fizik Vento Infinito Carbon 2
The Fizik Vento Infinito Carbon 2 is stiff, light, comfortable, and expensive to boot. David Caudery / Immediate Media
- £330 / $350 / €350 as tested
- Impressively lightweight, stiff, and comfortable
The upper is made from a lightweight and pliable Microtex fabric.
A band across the middle of the upper closes with a micro-adjustment Boa dial.
Together, these spread pressure evenly across the foot.
The carbon sole flexes laterally to prevent any cramping or discomfort. But a 'spine' runs from the cleat area to the heel, providing stiffness.
The shoe offers almost perfect comfort and performance at a high price tag.
- Read our full Fizik Vento Infinito Carbon 2 shoe review
Fizik Vento Stabilita Carbon
We'd love to see the tech in these shoes trickle down to Fizik's other models. David Caudery / Immediate Media
- £375 / $400 / €400 as tested
- Stiff with an adaptable fit
The result is a shoe with plenty of comfort and adaptability in the fit.
Despite the cutaway section, the sole is still stiff. Overall, the shoe performs tremendously well.
The Vento Stabilita Carbon will suit riders putting out big watts or anyone who values close-fitting comfort.
- Read our full Fizik Vento Stabilita Carbon shoe review
The Sidi Shot uses the brand's own dials for adjustment. Sidi
- £359 / $549 as tested
- Classic Italian styling
- Solid construction
Although not the most technically advanced shoe, the construction is sturdy. And, of course, there's that classic Italian styling.
Fit across the shoe can be adjusted in a novel way, with an adjustable heel enclosure and two of Sidi's own dials across the front.
There's plenty of adjustability, but Sidi's dials are slightly harder to use than Boa dials.
The carbon sole isn't the thinnest, but it is stiff.
This might not be a lightweight shoe, but it's certainly made for racing, and a young Colombian by the name of Egan Bernal won a pretty big bike race wearing it.
Sidi has released a new version of the Shot called the Shot 2, with an updated carbon sole.
- Read our full Sidi Shot cycling shoe review
These faux-snakeskin versions may be one of the more out-there designs from Sidi, but there is no hiding the wealth of tech within. Robert Smith / Immediate Media
- £330 / €420 as tested
- Superb fit and comfort
- Heavier than some competitors
Closure is via a single, centrally-placed Techno 4 dial and a front Velcro strap, which work with the robust heel cup to hold your feet firmly in place.
Sidi has updated its Vent carbon sole, too. It's well-shaped and reinforced, for plenty of stiffness and includes a closeable vent so you can limit airflow under your feet in cold weather.
With a range of replaceable components and spare parts available, the shoe is built to last.
But at 617g a pair in size 45, the Sixty is a bit heavier than other options at its high price.
- Read our full Sidi Sixty Limited Edition cycling shoes review
Specialized S-Works EXOS
Specialized's S-Works EXOS shoes weigh just 173.6g per shoe. Specialized
- £450 / $500 / AU0 as tested
- Unique design
- Amazingly light
The Specialized S-Works EXOS shoe is one of those products that elicits a "Wow" and our test pair (size EU45) weighed an astonishing 347.2g. That's just 173.6g per shoe.
Fortunately, considering the price, this drop in weight doesn't come at the expense of functionality.
The upper is Dyneema mesh. This synthetic, lightweight fabric is supple but doesn't stretch.
The sole is thinned, relative to the Specialized S-Works 7 shoe.
This also helps shave a few grams, but it's still a very stiff sole. Specialized rates it as a 13 on its Stiffness Index, which is the same as its S-Works 6 shoe.
Our tester found it to be ideal for riding in hot weather and on long climbs, where the breathable mesh uppers keep the feet cool.
Sadly, such cutting-edge tech doesn't come cheap.
- Read our full Specialized S-Works EXOS cycling shoe review
In conclusion, with so many options to choose from, finding the best cycling shoes can be a daunting task. However, armed with this comprehensive guide, you'll be well-equipped to make an informed decision that suits both your budget and your specific needs. Whether you're a casual cyclist or a seasoned pro, investing in the right pair of cycling shoes can make all the difference in your performance and overall cycling experience. So, lace up, hit the road, and enjoy the ride with confidence and style!