Review: Shimano SH-CT80 shoes

I’ve long been on the search for a pair of clipless shoes that work well on the bike and provide enough comfort to wear all day. Also high on the want list was a pair of shoes that didn’t look too bikey. I’m happy to report the CT80s are pretty close to perfect for my wants and needs.

With a look that says more “approach shoe” than “bike shoe,” the CT80s don’t look out of place with jeans or casual riding wear. These shoes are part of Shimano’s Click’r lineup, which includes shoes and pedals aimed at beginner or casual riders. I matched these up with minimalist pedals from Shimano’s mountain bike line, and everything worked just fine.

More than fine, really. The shoes are stiff enough to keep my feet comfortable for three to four hours of casual riding, but flexible enough to walk around for more than a few blocks. The cleat doesn’t scrape on flat surfaces, and the sole has plenty of traction to scramble around on dirt and rock. The laces tuck into an elastic band to keep them out of the chain. The sole isn’t designed for really muddy days, and as expected, it didn’t do well in those conditions.

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The fit is wider than most Shimano shoes and has a broad size range (38-48 or about 5.5-13 in U.S. sizing). With my 9.5 feet, I went with 44s, and wish there was a 43.5, but alas, no half sizes.

I like these shoes, a lot. Being able to ride places and then walk around, sometimes for hours, is something that is hard to do in most clipless shoes. For everything but marathon days on the bike or more racy pursuits, I give these shoes a happy pair of thumbs up.

Price: $120

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Ed. Note: This review was originally published in Bicycle Times 45, which came out in early 2017. Since the review was published, Shimano has stopped making the SH-CT80 but makes similar shoes in the same category. Check out the brand new SH line here. The SH-CT80 can also still be purchased numerous places, probably at a great price. 

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