Verdict from 14 experts and 9 user reviews

7 reasons to buy

  • Based on many reviews, the Shimano ME701 offers incredible traction.
  • Most wearers exclaim that the shoe provides immense all-day comfort.
  • Several purchasers say that it is durable and can endure plenty of hard rides.
  • The sole of the Shimano ME701 satisfies numerous cyclists with its ample stiffness.
  • A number of users delight at how lightweight the shoe is despite its burly construct.
  • Some experts declare this model to have sufficient protection.
  • Less than a handful of testers love how the neoprene ankle cuff and lace armor keep debris out.

3 reasons not to buy

  • Several wearers claim that the 2019 version feels less breathable than its predecessor.
  • Some riders gripe about how the retention system couldn’t be adjusted while on the bike.
  • A few reviewers think that the ME701 is pricier than other MTB shoes made for all-mountain cycling.

Bottom line

Created with the all-mountain rider in mind, Shimano’s ME701 is one of the brand’s class-leading models in its category. It features an abundance of essential elements that helps the shoe excel in its intended purpose.

Performance-wise, the shoe has been able to delight its users. The pair’s style, versatility, and efficiency make it a superior option for many mountain cyclists. Despite its minor flaws, it is safe to say that the ME701 efficiently delivers.

Tip: see the best mountain cycling shoes.

Good to know

Shimano’s newer versions of a particular model maintain the same name as its predecessor. For the ME7 lineage, several iterations have been released with the same name. This article covers the 2019-released Shimano ME701.

This pair’s synthetic upper features a cuff that offers protection from debris and ankle scuffs. The lockdown is governed by a speed lacing system, a Velcro strap, and a ratchet buckle. It also employs a stiff carbon composite midsole for great power transfer.

Lastly, a grippy rubber outsole compound enhances the off-bike experience. 

High traction rubber. Shimano and Michelin worked together to create a proprietary rubber compound for the cycling brand’s shoes. This compound mixes dual-density rubber and strategic lug design for superior grip and stability without compromising pedaling efficiency.

Technology that promotes natural feet movement. The ME701 incorporates the brand’s TORBAL (Torsional Balance) System. This innovation has the ability to flex in the heel area, encouraging the wearer to pedal more naturally and preventing injuries in the long run.

Efficient power transfer. This pair’s midsole is crafted from carbon fiber composite that provides stiffness and energy transfer. The Shimano ME701 has a rigidity rating of 8 out of 12 in the brand’s chart. This means that the wearer can expect sufficient firmness while pedaling.

This cycling shoe employs a 2-holed cleat system (generally known as SPD), which is commonly used in MTB shoes. Compared to road shoes’ 3-bolt cleat design, SPD systems don’t require too much effort to clip out so that mountain riders can release their foot during crucial times.

The Shimano ME701’s cleat area is designed to be suitable with a variety of pedal styles. Try these clipless MTB pedals with your shoes: Shimano M520, Crank Brothers Candy 3, and Ritchey Comp XC. Moreover, this shoe will also go well with flat MTB pedals such as the Crank Brothers Mallet E.

Extended cleat adjustment range. Compared to most cycling shoes’ 11mm space for cleat positioning, the Shimano ME701 offers a total space of 22mm. This more extended area provides its users with more pedal positions and aims to promote natural pedaling and strain prevention.

Durable contact area. Apart from the toe and heel areas, Shimano incorporated a longer-lasting and grippier compound in the cleat area as it tends to wear out quickly due to constant clipping in and out.

Relatively water-resistant. This model’s perforated synthetic leather works in conjunction with the lace armor and neoprene cuff to provide protection against small amounts of water and debris from permeating the insides of the shoe.

Lighter than expected. Despite its burly design, light materials and employing only the most essential components contributed to a relatively more buoyant feel.

Impact protection. Reinforced toe and heel areas work together to keep the foot safe from strong impacts and strikes.

Lockdown. The ME701 employs several types of closure systems. Underneath the lace armor is the speed lacing system, which cinches and releases with just a single toggle of the lock button. This allows for a fast and secure fit.

On top of the lacing system is a lace armor that closes via Velcro. This helps protect feet from the elements and provides enhanced lockdown. Lastly, the top-most part of the foot is secured by a reverse ratchet buckle.

Wider fit. Using feedback from this model’s older version, Shimano made sure that this latest update will have a roomier interior. Hence, it can now accommodate wider feet thanks to its larger toe box.

The Shimano ME701 utilizes single-density extra-cushioned insoles. This offers enhanced comfort and vibration dampening for the most comfortable long rides. Purchasers who need more support can easily swap the footbed to their preferred insoles.

Compared to its older sibling, this 2019 rendition has swapped mesh to perforated synthetic leather for its upper. It now also employs a Volume+ width as an improvement based on its predecessor’s feedback. Down below, tread designs were vastly improved to be more aggressive for better traction. Lastly, the brand also downsized the bulk of the ratchet buckle to prevent crash damages. 


How Shimano ME701 ranks compared to all other shoes
Top 32% mountain cycling shoes
All mountain cycling shoes
Top 10% Shimano cycling shoes
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Top 34% lace tucks cycling shoes
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The current trend of Shimano ME701.
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