Our verdict


Spearheading the return of lace-up bike shoes, the Empire ACC is considered an iconic model. Apart from being a trail-blazer, its lightweight construct is decked out with essential features. Impeccable power transfer, optimal comfort, and reflective components are some of its main strengths.


  • Comfortable on and off the bike
  • Excellent power transfer
  • Great looking
  • Reflective color options
  • Lightweight
  • Interchangeable arch support system
  • Excellent value for money
  • Retro lace closure
  • Replaceable heel pads


  • Lacing takes some getting used to
  • Visible glue

Who should buy Giro Empire ACC

Giro Empire ACC catapulted the comeback of the lace-up cycling shoe into the consumer’s radar. Although the lace-up design never left the market, it was considered outdated once newer closure styles were introduced. It is a solid option if you:

  • Prefer a comfortable shoe on and off the bike
  • Need a lightweight and breathable shoe
  • Desire for a retro lace closure that prevents hotspots and distributes pressure evenly

Giro Empire ACC Giro

Easton EC90 ACC carbon fiber sole

This model employs the Easton EC90 ACC carbon fiber sole. It is reported to be stiffer than previous generations and, in turn, provides excellent energy transfer to the pedals. 

Giro Empire ACC Easton

The sole also has a low stack height. It measures 6.5 mm, which provides a sensation of direct connection with the pedals.

3-bolt mounting system

The Giro Empire ACC features a 3-bolt mounting system. It is suitable for these pedal designs: Garmin Vector 3 Power Meter, Look Keo Classic 3, Speedplay, and Shimano Ultegra PD-R8000 SPD-SL.

Giro Empire ACC 3-bolt mounting system

Breathable and lightweight one-piece upper design

Crafted from the brand’s Premium Evofiber technology, this material is breathable and very light. It also keeps its shape no matter how many times it gets soaked.

Giro Empire ACC Breathable Upper

Time-tested lace-up closure

Equipped with a traditional lacing system, this pair offers a lightweight, adjustable, and comfortable fit. Through varying lacing patterns, users can personalize the fit no matter the shape of their foot. It also prevents any irritation and hot spots.

Giro Empire ACC Time-tested lace-up closure

Anti-microbial and interchangeable arch support

Employed with the SuperNatural Fit Kit technology, the Empire ACC cycling shoe offers arch support that can be adjusted for better comfort, especially during long rides. This footbed system allows owners to customize the insole depending on the level of the arch on their feet. 

Giro Empire ACC Insole

This shoe is also lined with a technology called X-Static Fibers. This technology is crafted with layers of silver that are permanently bonded to the surface of the fabric and it provides natural anti-microbial properties that help reduce odor.