Tested: Shimano R171 shoes
From top to bottom the newly designed Shimano R171 road shoe is an impressive package.
Designed to compliment it’s more expensive and feature-packed counterpart the R321, the second tier 171 gives you every reason to capitalise on its price and take your savings with you to the coffee shop.
While Shimano has done away with the heat mouldable upper and run with a simpler (less customisable, but lighter) inner sole, you still get the simple yet sophisticated styling that strongly resembles the top level shoe.
Sometimes the best feature of a product is to not notice it at all. This rings very true when it comes to shoes because the last thing you want is pain or discomfort at the end of a ride. There is really no greater compliment. They simply fit. No pressure points, nor heel lift and no warping or twisting of your cleats when fitted to the sole – which is an often overlooked aspect when conducting a shoe appraisal. Each full size (43, 44, 45 etc) provide a narrower fit, while half sizes (43.5, 44.5 etc) cater for wider feet.
Shimano have chosen to stick with two velcro straps and ratchet closure system for its new designs but have also moved away from the old style tongue that had a habit of gravitating to one side. Now, the inside wall pulls over the outside of the shoe allowing for a much cleaner look and glove-like fit. The slimmer design, smaller (and more aero) ratchet and smoother heel cup also make it easy to get booties over the shoes – something worth considering as we head into the colder months.
Weight: 554g (weighed, 43EU)
Want something a little brighter to combat the darker months? We inspect the Northwave Extreme Tech Plus and give our opinion on the high-vis offering.