To translate it into terms of Shimano's groupset hierarchy, the SH-R171 Cycling Shoes might best be thought of as Ultegra-tier. They combine a carbon outsole; Shimano's new, doubly customizable closure system; and a non-stretch, highly ventilated synthetic upper — all while losing a claimed 14 grams over their predecessors, the R170s. Despite all these gains, they still don't hit you in the pocketbook, making them sort of two-faced shoes. Like Ultegra, their price appeals to the recreational cyclist, but they also bring the features, functionality, and distinctive style that we'd expect to find in a pro-level shoe.
The outsole may be the most important piece of any cycling shoe, as it's the point where power is inputted to the pedals. The SH-R171s' lightweight, stiff carbon fiber composite sole means that the shoes don't neglect this duty, and their lack of flex also helps to eliminate hot spots and distribute load away from your foot's metatarsal area.
Shimano's Dynalast construction also increases your pedal efficiency by a claimed .56% on each stroke. While that doesn't seem like much at first blush, any cyclist who's ridden for longer than two hours understands the importance of marginal gains like this. They can be the difference between finishing a group ride or race at the front or struggling to hang on. Dynalast involves lowering the toe-spring and heel section in relation to the arch and metatarsal areas. This creates an optimal pedaling angle on either side of the up-swing, so the dead time spot is shortened.
The last is covered by a synthetic leather upper that resists stretching so your fit remains unaltered during long days in the saddle. This is particularly important for the R171s because they incorporate an ingenious new ratcheting buckle closure that can be adjusted fore and aft, letting you dial the fit to an unprecedented level by changing the angle at which the strap tightens. The insole contributes to the fit by comfortably keeping your heel stable. You don't have to ratchet the straps down to the point of losing feeling in order to keep your heel from slipping.
- Carbon fiber outsole
- Dynalast construction
- Non-stretch Synthetic leather uppers
- Customizable racket buckle closure
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Reviews & Community
I'm also looking for the wide version, size 42 to be specific.
Wide version is definitely the best fit. I wear a 45 wide even though my feet aren't wide. Superb fit without the feeling of being cramped.
Great Look and Feel...Kind of Sort of...
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
- Fit: True to size
- Size Bought: 45
First off, this shoe looks amazing if aesthetics are important to you; these rival what it would be like popping on a pair of two-toned wingtips to get about town for the night.
Love the fit of these shoes with the usual adequate Shimano toe-box (for normal width feet/shoes) and the really nice built in arch support. The extra support feels quite different at first, but once you get used to it you really notice not having it around if you are slipping into another pair of shoes (CX/MTN.) I have noticed that I generally feel like I am more stable through out my pedal stoke given this extra support. Total win!
Now where these shoes fall off: make no bones about it, given the unique design of these shoes, at least for the 2015 model, these are grossly under-ventilated and are an extremely warm shoe. Not so much a problem for late fall and the winter, but summer riding, well my feet cooked by the end of warm day rides. Not to mention when I have booties on for winter riding my feet are usually soaked more so than usual. And now not even after a full year of riding on them they have quite a stench to them! Not the be all end all, mind you, for determining the overall performance of the shoe, these can be uncomfortably warm. Here's hoping Shimano takes note and redesigns the overall ventilation for this model, particularly in the toe-box.
I am also looking for wide sizes. I see that Wiggle and Chain Reaction carry the wide sizes. I am looking for a 43.5 Wide.
You have on there a size 45.5.
Are you certain this size is available? Shimano mainly sells 45 and 46 in north America to my understanding. Just want to confirm. Lastly, are there WIDE versions available?
Shimano Changed a Few Things
- Familiarity: I returned this product before using it
Shimano shoes have always been my go to shoes. There are other brands that work, but most Shimano shoes fit my feet really well. Their high-end shoes come in size 45.5, whereas the lower-end ones are whole-sizes only, and for me, it's hit-or-miss. The 45 is always too small and the 46 often fits great....but not this time. This shoe has lots of mid-foot volume, rendering it too big for my foot.
Aside from fit, Shimano did some really nice things here. The tongue is integrated into the upper material, wrapping around the top of the foot, providing some extra padding. The buckle and the strap are now reversed. This renders a clean look. Unfortunately due to fit, I can't give any feedback on ride quality. The sole is a good looking carbon weave.