The Shimano PD-M540 is a popular pedal but will it score a perfect 10?
Shimano was first to bring high-performance mtb clipless pedals to the mass market, and it is still considered the benchmark for quality and reliability.
The PD-M540 pedal continues that tradition, and we couldn’t fault its dependable bearing quality, durable materials and positive action. This is the pedal many of our testers have on their own bikes.
Clipping in results in a definite click, while the release is predictable, with plenty of feel and feedback when you twist out. The tension adjustment works a treat too, with a wide range, from extremely light to almost locked.
If the M540 has an Achilles heel, it’s thick ice or snow, which accumulates around the cleat and needs to be bashed out. Then again, how often do you ride in snow?
In short, this pedal performs very well from the start and just keeps on working. Going on previous experience, it will last for years with very little in the way of maintenance — just unscrew the body and squirt some grease in now and again.
The only reason we haven’t given the M540 a 10 rating is because you can pick up the excellent Shimano PD-M520, which functions nearly as well, lasts just as long and weighs only 30g more, for £27 (and perhaps even less if you shop around a little).
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