2013 Specialized S-Works road shoes details and weights

The 2013 S-Works road shoe has been in development for two years and seen 35 prototypes. The result is what they call the lightest, stiffest, best fitting cycling shoe ever created. It gets a new last with thermo bonded upper and two S2 Boa retention systems plus a small strap on the forefoot. The new SL2 FACT carbon outsole has an asymmetric design, and the entire package tested 7 seconds faster over a 10k time trial than a competitor’s traditional shoe.

How? primarily because it’s super stiff, which maximizes power transfer. As an anecdotal explanation, Dr. Andy Pruitt, Specialized’s in-house fit guru behind Body Geometry, said Tom Boonen was using another brand shoe that wasn’t as stiff. Because the sole had too much flex, he was putting his cleats too far back, which didn’t allow him to maximize power transfer. With the S-Works shoes, he could put the cleat further forward (where it should be, generally under the ball of the foot), which allowed him to use his foot as a lever and improve efficiency, too.

Details, prototypes and so much more from their component (bars, pumps, computers, etc.) and clothing (helmets, gloves, etc.) lines after the break…

2013 Specialized S-Works road bike shoe

The glamour shot.

2013 Specialized S-Works road shoes details and weights

Less glamourous duct tape and other prototypes. Pretty cool to see how many design variations were tried.

2013 Specialized S-Works road shoes details and weights

The outsole was created through pressure mapping. The foot leans inwards, so the structure was designed with more material on the medial side where more pressure is put on the sole.

The outer edge of the base plate is just 1.7mm thick. Under the cleat is just 4.5mm, which is still thin. In order to make it strong enough, the carbon wraps up the inside of the upper and it uses a box section construction that sandwiches a noncompressible lightweight PU material. They provide their own short cleat screws because the ones that come with most pedals are too long for their super thin soles.

2013 Specialized S-Works road shoes details and weights

Air vent is offset to a nonstructural section. The upper has two mesh sections with plenty of perforations throughout.  They have replaceable heel lugs, and small gripper dots inside the heel cup to keep your foot in place.

2013 Specialized S-Works road shoes details and weights

Weight is 221g for a men’s 42.

2013 Specialized S-Works road shoes details and weights

Women’s versions get all the same features. The white one’s graphics carry over onto the carbon outsole and looks really good.


Body Geometry Gel Gloves (left) get a new lightweight mesh top and Wiretap pointer finger for working your touchscreen without having to take the gloves off. I’m a fan of the gel padding on these (had a pair for years now), and the new features make them even better. There’s also an Enduro gloves (right) with Airpreen Knuckles and double layer construction on the outer palm with minimal padding.

All 2013 MTB gloves use their new Lifeline Palm design (the curved cut visible around the thumb on the Enduro), which shouldn’t bunch up when gripping the bar.

Not shown: There’s also a new XC Lite with lightweight mesh upper, Clarino palm and silicone fingertips, and the Lodown with a mesh top, Clarino palm and finger seams that sit higher up around the finger for less chafing.



The big news for the entire helmet line is that all helmets, including kids’ helmets (nice!) but excluding full face helmets, get their Trifix fixed strap assembly. Their goal with Trifix was to make fit quick and simple and eliminate the chance for improper fit. Because it’s fixed, it simplifies “installation” and the wider base fits well around the bottom of the ear.

The Tactic all-mountain helmet gets redesigned with a bit edgier look. Rear coverage has been extended lower for more protection, and colors and graphics are refreshed. Visor is removable, and the shape is somewhat less bulbous than most “all mountain” style helmets. In fact, with the visor removed, it actually looks a bit small.


There’s a new Aspire women’s road helmet (left) and Andorra MTB helmet. Both have plenty of big air vents and inmold construction, the latter with a removable visor and extended rear coverage.

2013 Specialized womens bicycle helmets with ponytail friendly Hairport rear retention mechanism

They get the Hairport fit system, which has room for ponytails without affecting retention efficacy. The girls I spoke to about seemed pretty pleased.

2013 Specialized helmet color options

Just a few of the best color options for 2013.


2013 Specialized Toupe Pro carbon fiber road bike saddle with one-piece shell and rails

New Toupe Pro gets a molded one piece carbon construction with Adaptive Edge design. That lets the outer edges and corners flex with your body. It also gives the sides a smooth, clean look, which they call Invisible Edge, because every feature needs a good branding. The design idea came from their footwear, which has welded seams and recessed edges where the upper meets the sole.

2013 Specialized Toupe Pro carbon fiber road bike saddle with one-piece shell and rails

The shell has Tuned Stiffness, using different thicknesses and wall shapes to keep it from sagging in the center like the original Toupes but remain flexible at the Adaptive Edge. It does gain a bit of weight (about 40g) over the 2012 version, but it looks better and actually looks like it could be pretty comfy. Retail will be $180. Available in October.

Same changes go for the Ruby Pro women’s saddle. The angles and shaping are women specific, and it has a bit thicker padding.

2013 Chicane Pro and Expert Body Geometry road bike saddles

The Chicane keeps the $300 S-Works level saddle that was developed for Boonen, who gets a signature edition that’ll only be available with a special frame (left). Word is the S-Works level saddle will drop to about $250 for 2013. Now, there’s a Chicane Pro (center), which uses the same carbon rails but gets a plastic base, and the Chicane Expert (right) with hollow titanium rails. Pricing is $180 and $120 respectively.

The Riva Road (left) is a base level saddle that gets redesigned. It now uses vacuum form construction and durable, waterproof polyurethane cover. The result is a virtual one piece saddle. Shape is based on the new Toupe Pro but with more padding. Retail is just $35. Mountain and Women’s Rivas available, too.

New Body Geometry saddles (right) are comfort saddles for casual riders. There’s gel pads under the sit bones and a center relief channel. Foam is dual layer with a former foam core so the rider doesn’t sink too far into it. $40 retail, and a non-gel version is $30. Men’s and women’s models available.


Flex Pumps for road (shown) and MTB have a short flexible hose that slides out. Road pump is Presta only and should get up to 120psi. MTB version has a dual valve head with larger volume and dual pistons that move in both directions to deliver more air per stroke. Retail should be around $35-$40, available end of month.

2013 Specialized AirTool UHP and MTB Pro floor pumps

Also new Air Tool MTB high volume floor pump (green). The goal was to be able to seat any tubeless tire. The massive gauge only goes to 70 and it has a pressure relief button on the handle to make it very easy to get your psi just right. Good for cyclocross, too.

The new UHP Airtool floor pump (silver, third from left) was designed with their Autosag in mind. So yes, this is a shock specific floor pump. To set Autosag shocks, you simply pump the shock to 300psi, sit on the bike and hit the release valve. To get it up to 300psi, the UHP makes short work of it, and the high pressure hose (good for 2,500psi!!!) is super flexible and all but impervious to shock oil, which can degrade the hoses on standard pumps. The head threads on with a second seal that threads separately to close the shock’s seal so you don’t lose pressure when you remove the hose. Bleed valve, too, let’s you fine tune your shock pressure and release pressure from the hose before you remove it.

Airtool Pro (black, far right in lineup) gets a new die cast alloy handle and a more brushed, classic finish.


2013 Specialized Speedzone Expert ANT-plus cycling computer and power meter crankset spiders for S-works cranks

Speedzone Expert is a new ANT+ computer that mounts inside their stems or on your bar. The Expert model comes with wireless computer syncing for Mac and PC and has an altimeter. The Comp gets everything but the latter two features, and both claim to be the smallest, lightest power reading ANT+ computers on the market. Because they’re ANT+, both will read data from other brands, too. It runs off a standard coin button battery Now, if they only had GPS…

The new Quarq power meter spiders for their cranksets are finally available. They use Quarq’s updated, smaller electronics part with easier to replace battery. All electronics are inside the spider for better weatherproofing. It’ll be retrofittable to their S-Works cranksets in both 110 and 130 BCD. Full specs are in this post.


2013 Specialized Carbon aerobars and ski pole extensions for triathlon bikes

Carbon Aerobar and Aerostem originally spec’d on the Shiv, it’s now available aftermarket. Comes with elbow pads and carbon ski pole shaped extensions.

2013 Specialized Carbon aerobars and ski pole extensions for triathlon bikes

It includes a parts kit that lets you raise the aero extensions and arm rests up to 50mm in 5mm increments. There’s 90mm of width adjustment, too. Retail for the kit is $575.

2013 Specialized Carbon aerobars and ski pole extensions for triathlon bikes weights

Main piece weights are 309g (bar), 278g (stem) and 136g (extensions).

2013 Specialized alloy aerobars and ski pole extensions for triathlon bikes

Alloy version comes in at $200 and has all the same parts (except stem) and adjustment but uses a regular OS stem. Branding on both is almost non-existent, which makes it easy to put it on any brand bike without looking out of place.

2013 Specialized Chisel carbon rigid 29er mountain bike fork

The new Chisel full monocoque carbon fork will come in matte and gloss black for aftermarket, or color-matched on the Stumpjumper HT.

2013 Specialized Chisel carbon rigid 29er mountain bike fork 2013 Specialized Chisel carbon rigid 29er mountain bike fork

2013 Specialized Chisel carbon rigid 29er fork actual weight

630g with uncut steerer.


  1. Saxo bank colour scheme like the red above or like ‘IJBCape’ stated white and blue. Dont see the point with the 2010 strap if the top image is the new bg swork shoes.
    The 2011 and 2012 bg swork shoes do not have this as the lace system removed this so why revert back ?

  2. The fixed helmet strap sucks and you can see why on the photo featuring the ponytail extrusion. It’s impossible to tension the straps for an individual fit. I had the 2012 Prevail and, when riding over say 25mph, had to open my mouth as wide as possible to tension the strap and stop it from buzzing next to my ear. It is a rotten set up.

  3. Everything I’ve seen and read so far seems to indicate the new S-Works shoe has lost the 1.5º angled varus BG sole – can you confirm or deny?

    I love the ‘old’ (current) S-Works shoe fit, but as I already have a varus forefoot they’re basically useless for me.

  4. @andy

    If you check the pictures of the prototypes, it looks like Specialized tried a one boa does all instead of the velco strap, but obviously thought better of it after testing or feedback.

    The guy that heads shoe design used to design football footwear at adidas and i for one have a huge amount of respect what they are doing with the new footwear they are bringing out.
    The s works shoe shown above looks one of the best shoes i have ever seen (not just cycling..) and looks like it will have the performance to back up those looks.

  5. I wish their marketing and graphics depts did some research, so many more people would buy these shoes if the blocky, ugly, shouty fonts/text: “s-works” were subdued. How about an all white with gray text?

  6. @Meta

    The black ones are clearly the best option here because of the more subtle scheme. Though I agree, looking at the unbranded prototypes make me sad for what these could have been. The trend in high end shoes seems to be moving away from flash and brand overkill. Giro, Fizik, Rapha, and Bontrager’s new shoes all have very subtle branding.

  7. saw the sworks shoes will sell for $450.00
    Did you even notice their are still some of us suffering in this economy?

    thanks specialized – wow. you really do market to dentists and doctors…..
    you’ve become the Bose’ of bicycles.
    I would bet these shoes cost them about 80 dollars to make.

  8. @Spiderman

    You realize S-Works is their most expensive option, right?

    They have several other shoe options available if you can’t afford or choose not to spend this much.

  9. 2nd @ spiderman

    You obviosly didn’t gain an super mental powers, eh?

    If the new s-works didn’t come out and cost that much, then the new tech would never trickle down into better price points for non-sponsored/non-dentist riders.

    That’s how it works. Look back several years ago at any top gear s-works or other and you’ll see ‘entry’ level stuff by today’s standards.

    Is the Riva the replacement for my favorite Avatar?

  10. I know you didn’t it see it already, but you can look at Garneau new shoes for 2013. You will be able to get the ”course” shoes, for less than 350$ with the 2 Boa System, Carbon outsole, etc.

    So @ Spiderman, this is an option for you if you want

  11. Any idea when the 2013 line will be released for retail?

    I saw a video on the new 2013 Roubaix with disc brakes. Is this for real?

  12. Why such a “screamy” design. I am a cycler, I want to look good on my bike, not like a pimp.
    What is wrong with a all white model (i.e. 2010)
    I aM SpECiAliZeD, but these colorscheme’s make me look for other options.

  13. And why do the women’s shoes always have to have something prissy on them – it’s either pastels/pink and/or a stupid girly pattern on them. Please please please can we just have plain white? We’re not all princesses specialized!

  14. Hi,
    I have been looking for months for a bicycle helmet with a ponytail port, in red or a combo of red/black. I don’t want pink or turquoise or lavendar. Yes I’m a girl…but I really like red. I’d buy a unisex helmet if it had a ponytail port. Spring is almost here…HELP!

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