Sidi is one of the most iconic, prestigious and legendary shoe brands in the cycling world, a familiar sight on the feet of Grand Tour winners over the years, most recently with Tao Geoghegan Hart in the 2020 Giro d'Italia.
Founded in 1960, Sidi has an enviable reputation for the durability of its cycling shoes
Being Italian, Sidi cycling shoes are usually made on a fairly narrow last. If you need them wider, look out for 'Mega' fit
More expensive shoes include features like adjustable heel cups and multiple dials
RRP of the nominal base model Alba 2 shoes is £160, but there are a few Genius 7s around for under £100
Sidi was founded in 1960 by Dino Signori, who even now in his 80s is still at the helm of the brand he built into a world leader. The company’s history is one of innovation, from the first adjustable cleat to the introduction of nylon soled shoes, and the first use of velcro straps.
All Sidi cycling shoes are still designed, developed and manufactured in Italy. Building a shoe is a complex task and one that isn’t easily automated by robots and machines. Skills are passed down through the generations. Quality is paramount to the Italian company.
If you’re in the market for a new pair of shoes this summer your eye might be drawn to the Sidi website, but where to start? To help you out here is an overview of the current range.
The Fast is Sidi’s latest road shoe offering and aesthetically, it doesn’t stray far from the Sidi design book. Sidi shoes have, in recent years, been getting a little more understated in their design and the Fast certainly looks cleaner than many of Sidi’s previous designs. There are just two colour options, white or black and the lack of patterns on the upper will certainly please riders looking for a classic design.
The latest in the ever-popular Genius line replaces the previous version's ratchet buckles and Velcro straps with the Tecno - 3 dials found on Sidi's more expensive shoes. The carbon fibre sole has a replaceable heel pad and the top dial pulls closed a strap that Sidi calls the Soft Instep Closure System, with an EVA pad over the top of your foot to apply pressure comfortably.
Sidi's latest top-end shoes mark the company's 60 years in the shoemaking business and demonstrate the continued evolution of the company's high-end shoes. The microfibre uppers are built on the Vent carbon fibre sole used for the Wire 2, but they're closed by a new dial, dubbed Tecno-4, at the top of the foot, with a Velcro strap down by the toes. That Velcro strap hides a set of clever plastic teeth that lock it closed and take the load to prolong the life of the Velcro.
Sidi's latest version of the Wire has a pair of Tecno 3 buckles, like the original Wires, but the second buckle has been moved from the side of the shoe to the top. Like other shoemakers' Boa closures, the Tecno 3 buckles use a thin wire to pull the shoe together, providing fine-tuning of the tension across the upper without the faff of laces.
The Wire 2 has Sidi's Vent carbon fibre sole, as you'd expect from a top-end shoe, with replaceable toe and heel pads and the adjustable vent that gives it its name. Like the Shot it has an adjustable heel cup so you can firmly secure your foot for big efforts on hills or sprints.
While all Sidi cycling shoes come with a regular three-hole cleat setup, the Wire 2 Carbon SP has a sole designed specifically for Speedplay cleats, avoiding the necessity for adapters.
The Sidi Shot was the flagship shoe until recently, developed with help from Chris Froome who wore a prototype pair to victory in the Tour and production versions in his subsequent victories in the Vuelta and the Giro d'Italia.
Key to the design is a centrally positioned double Tecno-3 Push retention system to provide better aerodynamics and comfort. The full carbon fibre sole has a sliding vent, the heel retention system is adjustable and now features a reflector for added visibility, and the heel pad and toe guard are replaceable.
The latest generation of the Ergo shoes also has a pair of Tecno 3 dials, with a Velcro strap at the front. Construction has been simplified compared to the previous version though: there's no more adjustable heel grip, and the upper is now one piece of microfibre instead of the previous mixture of microfibre and mesh for a much tidier and more modern-looking shoe.
The Ergo 5 retains the previous generation's Twelve Carbon Composite sole.
The top-end shoe of a few years ago, the Sidi Wire uses the same carbon fibre sole as the Shot and essentially the same upper, but uses two Tecno 3 Push Buckles mounted on the side of the shoe, the upper one pulling a large strap over the top of the shoe.
For hot weather cycling, the Sidi Wire Carbon Air uses a perforated upper for extra ventilation when the temperature rises.
Zero Gore 2 sounds like the sequel to the most boring horror film ever, but it's actually the latest version of Sidi's warm and waterproof winter road shoe. It has Sidi's Millennium 5 composite sole in carbon fibre-reinforced nylon with mounts for Look/SPD-SL three-bolt cleats and anti-slip pads at the heel and toe. The mesh and microfibre upper has a Gore-Tex liner to keep out the wet and Sidi's Tecno-3 dial closure along with Velcro straps to snug it round your feet.
The Genius uses the Millennium 4 Carbon Composite sole but features a retention system comprising two velcro straps and an adjustable ratchet buckle at the top of the shoe. The upper is made with microtech mesh sections to improve ventilation and replaceable anti-slip heel pads are used on the sole.
The Genius 7 is also available in a Mega version, which is slightly wider than the standard shoe.
Sidi's latest entry-level shoe packs a Tecno-3 dial buckle to pull its Politex upper firmly closed around your foot, with a couple of Velcro straps to complete the task. It has the same Millennium 4 Carbon Composite sole as more expensive models, with mounts for three-bolt cleats and a replaceable polyurethane heel pad to make walking slightly less awkward.
There you go, the Sidi cycling shoes range in full. Hopefully, that guides you through the various options and price points helping you to make an informed buying decision. You can see the full range, including all the colour options, over at www.sidi.com
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David worked on the road.cc tech team from 2012-2020. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds, and you can now find him over on his own YouTube channel David Arthur - Just Ride Bikes.