If the shoe fits, wear it. Now that will be a lot easier to accomplish if you happen to be looking at Shimano shoes for road, Tri, mountain, and just about anything in between. Part of an impressive 18 new models from Shimano, the new additions to the road, Women’s road and mountain, and Tri market bring the total number of models to 71 total footwear designs. Of those 71, now there are 16 women’s specific models of which many like the new RP2W, RP3W, RP5w, and TR9W use the exact same technology as their male counterparts.
Fitting into their new Road Performance category, the four new models seek to offer an ideal balance of performance at attainable prices and high comfort levels. All of the new RP series shoes are built ont he Shimano Dynalast shape and with the exception of the RP9 above, all RP models are available in a narrower women’s specific fit. The reason for the lack of the women’s RP9 happens to be due to the fact that there is a new WR84 which steps in as a new competitive race shoe for the ladies…
Starting with the new RP2 and RP3, both models are meant to give the club or recreational cyclist a taste of what high end road kicks provide at a fraction of the cost. Built with a glass fiber reinforced sole with SPD or SPD SL cleat compatibility, the main difference between the two is the addition of a buckle for the RP3 for better adjustment of the shoe. Claimed weights are listed at 505g for the RP2 (40) and 527g for the RP3.
Building on the platform of the RP3, the RP5 ratchets things up with a carbon fiber composite plate that stands to reinforce the glass fiber nylon sole. The RP5 also includes a more supple upper with their pro level buckle design but still offers SPD and SPD SL cleat compatibility.
The RP line tops out with the men’s only RP9. The only shoe in the line to offer heat moldable custom fit technology, the upper and the insole will conform to your feet for a perfect fit. A textured upper surround, large air vents, reverse buckle, and a woven carbon fiber 11/12 stiffness rated sole finish off the kicks. Bonus – you get some anti-bacterial, mint scented insoles that should keep your feet smelling fresh. Or at least not nearly as bad. Coming in at 538g in size 40, the shoes will be available in black or white from size 36-50 with 37-47 in half sizes, and 36-48 in wide sizes.
Breaking away into the performance line, the women’s version of the RP9 is called the WR84. Shimano points out that while all of their shoes are technically unisex, the WR84 was designed specifically with women’s feet in mind with a narrower heel pocket, less volume, more support for the instep, and a smaller toe box. Meant for full on racing, the shoe includes a textured upper surround, an adaptable reverse buckle for better fit on different shaped feet, and a carbon fiber sole. The weight is listed at 500g.
With the exception of the WR84 (September) all of the shoes above will be available in October.
The new wave of women’s shoes continues with the mountain bike side of the equation. Two new models for off road use include the WM53 and the WM64. The WM53 is your basic entry level mountain shoe with three velcro straps and an aggressive lugged sole. The WM64 adds a buckle to the party as well as the newer Torbal midsole which allows for better flow on bike while clipped in. Torbal isn’t about walking around, instead it’s about letting you move around on the bike while still offering plenty of efficiency from your pedaling. Both shoes also include the Shimano Dynalst technology and a women’s specific fit similar to that on the WR84.
Finally, triathletes will be happy to see the new TR9 in the line up. Marking the 13th year Shimano has produced tri specific footwear, the TR9 is an elite level tri racing shoe with a 10/12 stiffness rated carbon sole. Offered in men’s specific fit in Blue, and a women’s specific fit in white, the TR9 uses a two strap velcro closure with the main strap reversed for easier adjustment while on the bike. Fully synthetic, the shoes won’t stretch and at 502g for a size 40 they’re fairly light. Built with a perforated upper and massive mesh panels, the TR9s will help your feet dry out after your swim and stay cool for hot days in the saddle.
Rather than fixed SPD SL bolt holes like many shoes have, the TR9 provides an additional 11mm of adjustment on top of the 11mm of adjustment from the cleats for perfect cleat placement. Built with a Dynalast footbed, TR9s are designed to be comfortable with or without socks. Available in September.
As part of their new marketing strategy, Shimano pairs each shoe with the SPD or SPD SL pedal that best suits the riders needs. Obviously, these can be used with any other compatible pedal including competing brands, but for riders looking for something similar in performance this makes it an easy choice.