First look: Shimano R132 SPD-SL road shoe + special bonus shoe

New road shoes hitting the shops now

by Tony Farrelly   October 28, 2008  

Shimano R132L shoe 2009

Just landed at the road.cc offices, and hitting the shops this week too, these new Shimano road shoes, look out for a test soon, but in the meantime here's a quick rundown of what's on offer.

We've always rated Shimano shoes, they may not be quite as flash as some others out there but they do deliver and usually you get a fair amount for your money too. List price for the R132s is £99 and for that you get a lightweight and rigid carbon fiber-soled shoe with synthetic leather uppers.

Closure system is a buckle plus two offset hook and loop straps - standard fare for higher end Shimano shoes for the last few years which means you can do them up nice and tight and then adjust them as necessary when you realise a few miles into your ride that maybe you've done them up too tight… well that's what we do anyway.

The reflective detailing on the heel is a nice touch, and in the accompanying blurb Shimano are also keen to point out the air holes in the soles for "increased ventillation", so you can't say you haven't been told.The Black and White colourway does it for us, but if it's a bit monochrome for you the R132s also come in blue and white. 

As you'd expect, they're Shimano SPD-SL compatible (be something of a surprise if they weren't, and the name sort of gives it away anyway) and they will also take Look cleats too.

Fit for our Euro sized 43s (equivalent to an 8 1/2 in English sizing) was snug, and reasonably wide – they are not a narrow road shoe, but neither are they really wide. I take a 43 and my only comment is that they are possibly quite a small 43 –  make your own mind up though when you try before you buy. 

Claimed weight is 643g for a pair of size 40s, we haven't weighed out 43s yet – but we will.

Bonus shoe!

Because we're not very good at reading captions on emails we also got a pair of Shimano's M086 mountain bike race shoes in by mistake. We were going to send them back, but we think they look like a great all-round road shoe - particularly for fast commuting combining the stiffness of a road shoe with the versatility (and walkability) of an SPD compatible shoe. Mountain bike race shoes are favoured by some couriers for just that reason. They'd make a good touring shoe too. 

Like the road shoes the new M086s are scheduled to be in the shops this week, list price is £69.99. That gets you a fairly wide-fitting shoe with pretty much the same closure system as the road shoe. The sole in this case is a fibreglass reinforced nylon outer with a rubber tread for extra grip.

Intended use is for weekend off-road racing and recreational use, but like the road shoes they do feature that neat reflective on the heel which is useful for the road. Claimed weight for a pair of 40s is 730g.