Ideal trail shoes thanks to the protective armour around the toes and sides.
Shimano introduced the M162 shoes at the end of 2011 so we’ve had plenty of time to use them. They’re a great shoe for all-round trail riding thanks to some interesting and thoughtful features.
Top of the list are the robust rubber protective panels flanking the sides of the shoe. They're very effective and give your feet improved protection from rocks kicked up by your front wheel or when you're hiking over unrideable terrain. They also give the shoe a unique and appealing look that will go well with your baggy shorts and knee pads.
A synthetic leather upper is punctuated with several mesh panels that at this time of year do let in a fair amount of cold air, but they're not as bad as some racier shoes.
With a rubberised nylon sole reinforced with a carbon polyamid shank plate the shoe nicely balances a good level of stiffness for efficient pedalling and enough flex for occasional walking. We'd hesitate to pick them for a cross-country race but for longer marathons and all-day epic rides they're a comfortable pair of shoes that won't leave your feet sore.
With chunky blocks and two short moulded studs at the front and a little flexibility, the out soles are good for those times when you have to push your bike back up the trail to attack that jump again. Or for scrambling over fallen trees, hefting the bike over rocks or just walking into the café without skidding across the granite floor.
Two Velcro straps with an off-set shape combine with a low-profile ratchet to secure them comfortably with no pressure spots. Worn for short rides and around the clock they're comfortable from the first hour to the last. The higher ankles are a particular highlight that adds a bit more protection round your the ankle bone.
After several months use they're showing few signs of wear or trail abuse. Racers will find them too flexible and a bit heavy (960g for a size 45 pair), but for everyone else these are some of the best all-round shoes and espcially ideal for non-competitive trail riding. And at this price, they're very good value for money.
A versatile shoe that offers a good balance of riding stiffness and walking grip. A little on the heavy side but the price counters that well enough with the impressive performance on the trail.
A bit heavy
Racers might find them too flexible
More information: Shimano SH-M162 shoes
UK supplier: Madison Cycles
What Shimano says about the M162 SPD shoes
Tough synthetic leather upper with built-in protection, excellent durability Comfortable shock absorbing EVA cushion insole Micro-adjust buckle and dual offset straps
Volume+ last for a more accommodating toe box
Multi function rubber outsole with optional spike mount for excellent grip in varied conditions Carbon reinforced polyamid shank plate for optimum sole rigidity Best matched with Shimano XT PD-M785, PD-M530