Sizes: 39-48 / Colours: black only / Carbon-fibre sole / Injection-moulded mud-shedding tread / Offset and cut-able straps
Mountain biking is all about compromise and although our favourite shoe, Shimano’s DX, has great foul-weather credentials (the large front flap keeps out the worst of the mud spray), once off the bike they’re like hiking in slippers. Studs offer the ultimate purchase in the mud, but the shoes you see them on are usually for racing and have large areas of mesh, which is rubbish for keeping the water out.
Step up Shimano’s new M182N. It looks and feels like a race shoe, with a carbon-reinforced sole, ratchet-style buckle and two studs on the toe. The difference is a polyurethane-coated synthetic leather which covers the whole of the upper and, according to Shimano, offers “greater protection from the elements, making this shoe ideal for use in the spring and autumn”.
Shimano isn’t claiming the M182N is waterproof, but you’re less likely to get a load of water pouring into the front of each shoe as you splash through a puddle. Supplementing the M182N with a pair of waterproof socks would be sensible and more cost effective than opting for fully waterproof boots, like Shimano’s MW02. If you are going to wear waterproof socks, it’s worth going up a size in the M182Ns because they do come up on the small side. If you want a three-season shoe with race stiffness, that is lightweight and that you can use with or without overshoes or Seal Skin waterproof socks, the M182 is probably not that much of a compromise after all.
MBR RATING: 9/10