Who should buy Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel

Despite the gravel-focused build of the Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel, this pair's construction is generally considered versatile. Aside from gravel cycling, cyclists involved in the following should add this to their cycling shoes rotation:

  • Cyclocross
  • Leisure mountain cycling
  • Urban commutes
  • Touring

Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel label

X-Alp Gravel is a shoe for all surfaces

The X-Alp Gravel is purpose-built for cycling on gravel surfaces. Footwear for this activity requires road cycling shoes' comfortable snug and sleek upper and MTB shoes' grip and walking capability for hike-a-bike sections. 

Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel cleat

This cycling shoe from Pearl Izumi provides everything that is necessary, and many users praise this pair's ability to perform on varying surfaces.

Comfortable upper and BOA placement

This MTB shoe is commended by plenty of users for its excellent comfort.

Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel upper

The X-Alp Gravel's almost seamless upper and off-center BOA placement eliminates pressure points, according to several wearers.

Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel boa closure

The only downside with the BOA closure is that the closure design requires trial and error to get the correct fit.

Sufficient power transfer without compromising comfort

For some testers, the Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel yields enough power transfer and flex for walking comfort.

Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel outsole

To ensure that neither the stiffness nor the walkability of the shoe suffered, the technology from the brand's X-Project was borrowed.

Other gravel bike shoe models you can try

Fizik Terra X5. Compared to the X-Alp Gravel, this Fizik model's main differences include:

  • A micro-Velcro strap to cinch the toe area separately.
  • More color choices.
  • A heel pull-tab.
  • Cutout tip of the tongue.
  • An option to choose from two upper materials. 

Both the Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel and Fizik Terra X5 retail for $150.

Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel low cut

Giro Privateer Lace. The most apparent distinction of this pair from the X-Alp Gravel is its use of the traditional lace-up closure system. Hence, it is for cyclists who love retro-inspired cycling shoes. 

Price-wise, the Privateer Lace is $10 cheaper at $140 compared to Pearl Izumi's $150 offering.

Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel laces

Facts / Specs

Weight: Men 340g
Use: Mountain
Cleat design: 2 holes
Closure: BOA
Features: SPD, Recessed cleats
Material: Synthetic, Nylon composite sole

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Pearl Izumi X-Alp Gravel video reviews

Rhys Smith
Rhys Smith

Rhys is an expert in all things cycling and bicycles who at a young age pursued the dream of becoming a professional cyclist by racing for a French and then Belgian road racing team at the Elite level. He is heavily involved in the cycling scene and runs one of Australia’s highest-rated online bicycle parts stores. He’s THE expert when it comes to testing cycling shoes.