We spent 8.3 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what cyclers think:

7 reasons to buy

  • Numerous testers agree that the Shimano AM501 is a delightfully comfortable mountain bike shoe.
  • Based on several reviews, it is a stylish looking pair.
  • According to a bunch of purchasers, this Shimano MTB shoe has good value for money.
  • Its excellent grip and adequate flex make trudging through the woods easier, say some hike-a-bikers.
  • The AM501’s adequately stiff soles make it an ideal trail/enduro/downhill bike shoe.
  • A few wearers appreciate how well-protected their feet are in this model.
  • A minority of users mention its cleat base area has plenty of room for adjustments.

3 reasons not to buy

  • Several purchasers find that the Shimano AM501 gets toasty during warm rides.
  • Based on some individuals, they prefer if a lace keeper is also provided to keep laces from getting caught in the bike.
  • A few cyclists say there should be more color options for this shoe.

Bottom line

The Shimano AM501 is an MTB clipless shoe that’s designed not just with pedal efficiency but also with comfort in hike-a-bike conditions. It is aimed at riders who are looking for a no-frill, simple pair of SPD-compatible mountain shoes that don’t require super rigid soles.

The minor issues aren’t considered deal breakers for most, and this model’s budget-friendly price offers excellent value, given its positive traits.


Expert Reviews

81 / 100 based on 7 expert reviews

  • 90 / 100 | Guido Whisperer | | Level 1 expert

    Grip is very good, walkable, comfortable. Only gripe is clipping out is sometimes difficult whenever there's a pebble stuck in the cleat area.

  • 80 / 100 | Pink Bike | | Level 3 expert

    For riders looking for a comfortable, bare bones shoe that doesn't attract any unwanted attention with garish colors or extra straps and dials, the AM5 hits the mark.

  • 80 / 100 | Mountain Bike Rider | | Level 3 expert

    Good water resistance and easily shrugs off minor rock strikes

  • 82 / 100 | Singletracks | | Level 2 expert

    The Shimano AM5 mountain bike shoe is a great choice for both comfort and stability, and should be able to withstand many miles of trail and all-mountain riding.

  • 80 / 100 | Bike Radar | | Level 2 expert

    DH focused, well protected shoe, best used with a platform clipless pedal.Buy if, You spend most of your time going downhill and want good bang for your buck.

  • 80 / 100 | NSMB | | Level 1 expert

    the AM5 offers a great mix of comfort, durability, stiffness and style. For warm / dry days I preferred the AM5 to the old AM45, but think I will prefer a shoe with a lace cover on wet and cold days. If you want a lace cover you’ll have to look at the more expensive AM9, which offers less protection, but is lighter.

Become an expert

Shimano’s AM501 is an MTB shoe with SPD compatibility. It was designed with the help of Downhill World Champion Gee Atherton. The nylon midsoles are reinforced with glass fiber to create a stiffer platform with a better transfer of power. 

The rubber soles and its tread design enhance grip no matter the trail conditions. Lastly, lace closures provide secure yet comfortable lockdown.

A balance between rigidity and flex. The AM501 is rated by the brand to have a stiffness index of 5 out of 12. This yields enough stiffness for adequate power transfer and enough pliability for comfortable hike-a-biking when the situation calls for it.

High traction. Apart from this shoe’s rubber soles, distinctive tread designs are also applied in the toe and heel areas. This aids in keeping the wearer upright in slippery trails.

The Shimano AM501 employs a 2-bolt cleat system. It is compatible with the following pedal types: Crank Brothers Mallet Enduro, Time ATAC XC 8 Clipless Carbon, and Crank Brothers Egg Beater 3 Clipless.  

It features an expanded cleat adjustment range. This offers extra room for users to mount further back towards the ball of the foot for better positioning.

This model can be used on both flat and clipless pedals. Thanks to its sole design, it plants perfectly on flat pedals.

Durable and protective upper. Crafted from synthetic leather and mesh inserts, the Shimano AM501 offers breathability, adequate protection against impacts, and endurance. 

Time-tested closure. This shoe employs the traditional lace-up system. Aside from providing a proven lockdown and comfortable fit, it also easily replaceable when the need arises.

This model comes with a regular type of insole. Wearers can replace it with special orthotic footbeds for better arch support.

  • The Shimano AM501 comes with an extra pair of laces.
  • This review covers the 2019 version. The previous iteration employs a top strap that keeps laces in place.

Shimano AM501 or AM701? If you’re debating which one to get, here’s a brief rundown of their similarities and differences. Both Shimano AM501 and AM701 come from the same lineage and suggested use. They also both utilize lace-ups for retention and are sneaker-inspired.

However, the AM701 received better overall reviews. It is said to be lighter and more breathable. And components such as protective toe bumpers, Velcro top-straps, and ankle gaiters proved to be essentials for mountain cycling.