Shimano’s line of women’s specific shoes is impressive from top to bottom this season. While the top-of-the-line WR89 competition shoes offer superb stiffness and responsiveness for racing, the second tier, RP5 women’s shoes are really where Shimano shines.
At $150, the RP5s are a bargain. Not only are they a comfortable, resilient set of shoes, but they’re also compatible with two and three-bolt cleats, meaning they can do double duty for outdoor road riding and spin classes. For half the price of other performance-oriented shoes, these take the cake in versatility and value.
The lightweight, reinforced nylon sole isn’t as stiff as Shimano’s top-tier carbon sole, but the RP5s balance power transfer and all-day comfort seamlessly. The shoes feel plenty stiff on hard efforts or sprints out of the saddle, but the extra compliance in the sole meant we didn’t finish every ride with aching feet.
Two Velcro straps and a ratchet make up the tightening system for these comfortable shoes. The reverse ratchet mechanism took some getting use to, but once we got it, tightening and loosening our shoes on the fly was quick and easy.
The minimalist aesthetic provides a low-key, classic look that we dig. Just be sure to steer clear of puddles and dusty roads while riding, as these all-white kicks won’t hide any of that road dirt or grime.