Who should buy the Fizik Terra Atlas

The Terra Atlas from Fizik is a gem for cyclists who need the following:

  • a shoe to ride them all (on and off-road, gravel, hike-a-bikes, multiple-day bikepacking)
  • a hybrid of a racer and a recreational cycling shoe
  • a fine balance between power transfer and comfort for walking
  • a more generously fitting shoe for wider and swollen feet

Who should not buy this bike shoe

If you are looking for an MTB shoe that’s more specifically targeted at speed and performance on demanding trails, get the Fizik Terra X5. It comes with a stiff carbon plate for the most efficient power transfer and a combination of BOA and Velcro for the most locked-down fit. It is also super lightweight: 2.6 oz (75 g) lighter than the Atlas.

And for those who prefer the good old Velcro straps to BOA, the Fizik Terra Powerstrap X4 is a more suitable choice. It is also a more lightweight gravel shoe: 2.2 oz (62 g) lighter than the Terra Atlas.

Snug fit with a generous toebox space

Riders agree that the Terra Atlas feels comfortable straight from the box thanks to the flexible upper material and a good toe box space. Even those with wider feet highlight that the pair feels “roomy enough,” has a “wider fit than normal,” and a “more generous fit” than the Terra X5 and Fizik’s “racier shoes.”

A cozy in-shoe feel is provided by the 100% polyester lining and minimal padding. There are no reports of hot spots or chafing.

Unfortunately, a few bikers did experience heel slips when walking and pushing the bike up on the trail.

Easy to adjust with the BOA L6

Many reviewers find the BOA a very practical lacing system that can be easily adjusted on the go, with just one hand. The 1-mm increments allow you to make micro-adjustments to the shoe’s fit. One expert also took note of the clean look created by this BOA closure as well as the smart positioning of the eyelet loops which help to keep the tongue in place.

However, more than a few bikers think that the shoe would really benefit from the double BOA closure or at least a combination of the BOA and a Velcro strap. The problem with a single BOA seems to be that they have to get the fit much tighter than what they normally prefer around the ankle if they want a snugger fit in the midfoot. For those with narrow feet, having a separate dial on top of the instep would make the adjustment much more precise.

Fizik Terra Atlas makes long rides extra comfortable

Quite a few wearers of the Terra Atlas claim that this is the most comfortable cycling shoe they’ve ever worn. This is primarily due to the fact that the shoe hits a sweet spot between flexibility and power transfer with a stiffness index of  5 out of 10:

  • “it's a difficult balancing act,” claims an expert
  • another reviewer reports that the shoe is “as at home when riding as [it is] when walking”

The Atlas employs a nylon plate instead of carbon to give more flex for walking and long days on the bike. “Think more of a hiking trainer feel,” says one of the testers. A few more people have compared it to a hiking shoe with a pedal cleat. They say that walking is also made easier as the rubber sole covers the SPD release well. Some of their comments include: “very pleasant to walk on” and “instills confidence walking.”

This is also one of the most highly recommended options for long bike trips and bikepacking. It comes from the bike riders who have traveled over 100K in the shoe.

Smooth pedaling with efficient power transfer

Those riding a variety of surfaces in one go, including gravel, tarmac, woodland, and others are happy with the “balanced stiffness” of the shoe. It makes the pedal strokes feel smooth and distributes pressure across the foot very well.

The cleat fitment also received lots of praise. Because it has a longer slot than other MTB shoes, it helps to clip in and out much easier despite the large lugs.

Plenty of grip off the bike

A great number of reviewers report feeling very surefooted thanks to the robust studs and grippy rubber on the outsole. The latter covers the entire heel-to-toe surface, including the mid-foot, to create a larger contact area. This is really helpful when hike-and-biking a steep, rough track. The two studs under the toes come into play when you need to push or walk up steep sections.

An avid cyclist also finds the middle rubberized section very helpful for the times when he misses clipping on trickier terrain. Another one was amazed at the grip on wet roots and off-camber mud as he pushed the bike up “some steep muddy stuff.”

Terra Atlas is a quality product

“Definitely feels like a premium product,” “the quality appears to be outstanding,” - many reviewers are highly satisfied with the quality level of the Terra Atlas. They find it a great value for money and at par with all other Fizik shoes.

Some also report that it “holds up well to bumps and scrapes,” with its TPU overlay on the toe cap and sturdy upper. 

Your feet remain ventilated

With ventilation holes covering the entire upper of the Terra Atlas, none of the cyclists had issues with the shoe’s breathability. As one of them says: “I don’t think your feet will overheat in hot weather.”

Facts / Specs

Weight: Men 355g
Use: Cyclocross, Mountain, Road
Cleat design: 2 holes
Closure: BOA
Features: Breathable, Recessed cleats, SPD
Material: Nylon composite sole, Synthetic upper

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