Shimano MW7 Gore-Tex SPD Shoes (MW701) (2024)

Shimano's MW7 Gore-Tex SPD Shoes are comfortable, waterproof and pleasingly easy to use. They have a grippy sole for gravel and mud, use a single Boa dial and a lace-shielding flap and take two-bolt cleats. They prove easy to get on and off, quick to clean and kept my feet warm in temperatures down to just below freezing. They can take a while to dry out once soaked, though.

I've previously worn out a pair of Shimano winter boots – the MW81s – as they were such faithful companions on six winters of cold rides. In terms of warmth and waterproofing, these MW701s aren't much different, as you get a Gore-Tex insulated, waterproof liner with a Velcro ankle cuff up top.

> Buy these online here

> Find your nearest dealer here

The main difference is the closure system. Where the MW81s used three Velcro straps, the MW701 uses a single Boa L6 dial. This is a massive improvement; the Boa dial makes micro-adjusting tension a cinch. It only works only one way with the L6 dial though, and releasing tension is all or nothing.

The dial sits just outside a Velcro-down flap that provides a bit of extra weather and mud protection, and makes cleaning a lot easier too. All this makes getting these on and off about as easy as regular summer shoes. For me, this is Reason Number One to own a pair of winter boots (Shimano calls them shoes, but you know what I mean) like these. I'm all about efficiency, and whereas overshoes are a source of minor irritation to get on and off, these are easy to live with.

Shimano MW7 Gore-Tex SPD Shoes (MW701) (14)

Early signs are that these are as durable and well made as my old MW81s, so they'll outlast quite a few sets of overshoes too, which certainly helps add value.


Reason Number Two is that, at least in my experience, these are more waterproof than all the overshoes I've tried. They are not completely waterproof though, and for two reasons: one is that there is a hole in the top for your leg. Unless you cover the hole with waterproof trousers to below the neoprene ankle cuff, rain and spray is going to find its way in.

Shimano MW7 Gore-Tex SPD Shoes (MW701) (15)

The other is that because the liner is waterproof, when you're riding in proper weather and the outside is soaked, the breathable membrane doesn't work as well – eventually your feet get soaked from sweat.

Shimano MW7 Gore-Tex SPD Shoes (MW701) (16)

With overshoes, you get the same problems, but worse. Overshoes tend to be less breathable, and they can't cover the sole of the shoe on account of your cleats; the waterproof liner in the MW7s, meanwhile, envelops your whole foot.

Shimano MW7 Gore-Tex SPD Shoes (MW701) (17)

The flipside is that when the MW7s do get soaked, they can take a long time to dry out, as is the case with any winter boot worth its name where the liner is not removable.


In dry weather, these winter shoes work well for me from when the mercury hits single digits down to just below freezing. I've found that warming them up on the radiator for ten minutes before setting off makes all the difference when it's below zero, just to eke out a little more comfort. In proper wet weather I found them good down to about five degrees.

Shimano MW7 Gore-Tex SPD Shoes (MW701) (18)

The MW701s get a stiffness rating of 5 from Shimano, on a scale that goes up to 12. For winter riding, this is fine, but they are not what you would call performance shoes; they sit more towards the comfort end of the scale. That is exactly what I want from a winter boot: warmth and comfort are my main requirements, though yours might be different.

The outsole is a grippy Michelin dual-density rubber, and as these are SPD shoes, the cleat is recessed, which makes comedy situations in slippery conditions less likely.

Shimano MW7 Gore-Tex SPD Shoes (MW701) (19)


My usual shoe size is 43. I know from experience that Shimano shoes size up small, and the accepted wisdom is to size up for winter boots to fit thicker socks. As my old MW81s were a size 45 and fitted fine, that's the size I initially requested for review.

Shimano MW7 Gore-Tex SPD Shoes (MW701) (20)

They turned out to be boat-like on my feet, and the size 44s I have now are on the generous side. To confuse matters further, I am also reviewing a pair of Shimano XC7 shoes at the moment, they're also a size 44, and they fit just right. In other words, the MW701s size up big, unlike other shoes in Shimano's range.


While £199.99 is a fair chunk of cash, it is pretty much the going rate for a pair of decent winter cycling shoes. Fizik's Artica X5 offroad shoes and Artica R5 winter road shoes are £10 less at £189.99, while the Mavic Ksyrium Pro Thermo road shoes were £199 when we reviewed them a couple of years ago, though they seem to no longer be available.

Northwave's Magma XC Cores are cheaper at £169.99 and Shimano's own MW5s are less at £140, but the latter use speed lacing instead of Boa dials, and the sole is not this super grippy Michelin one.

As ever, you can pay more. Steve really liked Northwave's Celsius R Arctic GTX road shoes, which are now £214.99, while Fizik's Terra Clima X2s are £250. Rachael didn't rate them very highly, however, whereas Mike found the £275 45NRTH Wolvhammer Boa Winter Cycling Boots to be 'pretty much the last word in extreme cold-weather cycling footwear.'


Shimano's MW7 SPD winter shoes are easy to get on and off, comfortable, warm, and as waterproof as any boot with a hole for your foot can be. The Boa dial is well positioned and the flap makes cleaning them afterwards easy too – just remember the sizing is more true to street sizes than many.


Warm, comfy, easy to use and easy to clean – just be careful with the sizing

If you're thinking of buying this product using a cashback deal why not use the Top Cashback page and get some top cashback while helping to support your favourite independent cycling website test report

Make and model: Shimano MW7 Gore-Tex SPD Shoes (MW701)

Size tested: 44

Tell us what the product is for

Shimano says: "Tough, insulated, waterproof, and comfortable shoe built for riders without an off-season."

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Shimano says:

Waterproof GORE-TEX Insulated Comfort liner for maximum comfort.

Integrated lace-shield design with high cuff cover construction.

BOA® L6 dial for quick and precise micro-adjustment.

Fleece-lined insole for added insulation and heat retention.

360-degree reflectivity for high visibility.

MICHELIN high-performance, dual-density rubber outsole offers superior traction with unmatched durability, stability, and slip resistance.

Torsional midsole 'TORBAL' allows natural rider 'flow' motion during downhill descents.

Rate the product for quality of construction:


Rate the product for performance:


Rate the product for durability:


Rate the product for fit:


Rate the product for sizing:


It's accurate to normal shoe sizes plus a little bit of room for chunky socks – but as the rest of Shimano's shoes aren't, it may catch some riders out!

Rate the product for weight:


Rate the product for comfort:


Rate the product for value:


How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?

Easy to wipe clean.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

For me, these are the perfect balance of weather protection versus ease of getting on and off.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

They are very comfortable, and easy to get in and out of.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

The long drying time.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on

While £199.99 is a lot to pay, it is not at all outrageous compared to other decent winter cycling shoes. I could only find Northwave's Magma XC Core significantly cheaper, whereas there are plenty at a similar price point (from Fizik and Mavic for example), and more expensive options from the likes of Sidi, Northwave and 45NRTH.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

These work extremely well and prove warm, comfortable, grippy and well made. They're as waterproof in real-world conditions as you can seriously expect, promise to last well thanks to Shimano's proven build quality and are priced well against the competition. There's little to dislike.

Overall rating: 9/10

About the tester

Age: 44Height: 1.78mWeight: 77kg

I usually ride: All of them!My best bike is: Ribble Endurance SL disc

I've been riding for: Over 20 yearsI ride: Most daysI would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, club rides, mtb, Zwift

Shimano MW7 Gore-Tex SPD Shoes (MW701) (2024)


What is the difference between Shimano sh MW702 and 701? ›

The Shimano MW702 has a slightly wider fit than the MW701, and the sizing comes in wide only. If you're riding with winter-weight socks, this extra room fills up fast, but there is enough wiggle room to keep airflow open for cold toes.

Are Shimano shoes waterproof? ›

Enter Shimano's recently updated MW7 winter shoe, built specifically for the year-round rider in mind. These versatile cold-weather cycling shoes feature an insulated Gore-TEX waterproof membrane layer and a new wraparound shield with a tall cuff that work together to keep warmth in and the elements out.

Are flat cycling shoes worth it? ›

Of course, when your feet are clipped in, they cannot slip off the pedals at inopportune moments. But you also get lots of security from flat pedal shoes, thanks to their super sticky soles. The material on the soles, combined with the tread pattern keys into the pins on your pedals.

Do cycling shoes make a difference? ›

Good quality cycling shoes can have a huge impact on the quality of your ride and how much you enjoy it. The shoes you wear while cycling help you pedal more effectively and comfortably, for a better and safer overall ride.

Is Shimano high end? ›

Shimano's higher-end groupsets are lighter, more durable, and use premium materials, while lower-tier groupsets focus on affordability and reliable performance. You can usually mix and match components within each category or purchase an entire groupset as a package.

Which Shimano is better? ›

Shimano Dura-Ace

At the top of the pile is Dura-Ace, Shimano's premium road groupset and the go-to choice for professional racers. The latest version, R9200, launched earlier this year and is Shimano's first 12-speed road groupset. Plus, it is now semi-wireless and electronic-only.

Are GORE-TEX shoes really waterproof? ›

Original GORE‑TEX products offer guaranteed waterproof, windproof, and breathable protection. So if your heart rate is going to rise and a strong wind and rain are forecast, some GORE‑TEX Invisible Fit footwear and a jacket made with GORE‑TEX SHAKEDRY™ product technology could be just what you need.

Do GORE-TEX shoes stay waterproof? ›

If you read through this post, you already know the answer: No matter whether you used some waterproof treatment or not, GORE-TEX shoes are completely waterproof. The membrane does not get worn off, even when you wear the shoes on a regular basis.

Do I need to waterproof GORE-TEX shoes? ›

GORE-TEX shoes come with a water-repellent finish when you buy them. It is therefore not necessary to impregnate a new shoe.

Do any pro cyclists use flat pedals? ›

Although a lot of riders do choose to ride clipped-in, there are plenty of riders, even at the top of the sport, that prefer to use flats.

Is it better to size up or down in cycling shoes? ›

It's suggested to size up if you're between sizes, it's important ot keep in mind cycling shoes are intended to wrap snuggly around the foot. Similar to how running shoes are created to help keep you comfortable and enhance performance, bike shoes were also designed with a specific purpose in mind as well: pedaling.

Do clipless pedals make you faster? ›

Clipless pedals allow you to clip your shoes into the pedals, while flat pedals allow your feet to move freely. Clipless pedals can potentially make you faster.

What are the disadvantages of cycling shoes? ›

Some cycling shoes (notably road bike shoes) can be challenging to walk in. According to Trek Bikes, road cycling shoes have the stiffest soles and widest cleats and probably won't be suitable for riders looking to keep jumping on and off the saddle.

Is it better for cycling shoes to be tight or loose? ›

Good cycling shoes are stiff, snug, and supportive. Unlike running shoes, a roomy forefoot isn't necessary since the foot does not roll forward while pedaling. About 1.5 cm of toe room should be plenty. Stiff soles and snug shoes stabilize the foot, but they should not be so tight that they pinch.

How long do cycling shoes last? ›

As a general rule, if you take care of your cycling shoes and don't ride in the rain too much, they should last you around 10,000 to 15,000 miles.

What is the order of Shimano groupsets? ›

Shimano road and gravel groupset hierarchy (high to low)
  • 8 speed. Claris 2400 / 2403.
  • 9 speed. Sora R3000.
  • 10 speed. GRX RX400 (gravel) Tiagra 4700 / 4720.
  • 11 speed. Dura-Ace R9100 / R9120 (electronic/mechanical) GRX RX815 (gravel, electronic) ...
  • 12 speed. Dura-Ace R9200 (electronic) Ultegra R8100 (electronic) ...
Nov 21, 2023

What is the difference between Shimano SPD pedals? ›

SPD cleats use two bolts to fix to the shoe, so they're often called 'two-bolt cleats'. SPD-SL cleats have three points of attachment to the shoe, so they are also called 'three-bolt cleats'. They are made of plastic, to keep their weight down.

What is the difference between SLX and XT groupset? ›

While XTR and SLX group levels only offer standalone hubs, XT adds complete wheel options, too. Available in both 27.5 and 29in options but only Boost-spaced hubs (110x12mm front, 148x12mm rear), the XT wheels are offered in two clear variants.

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Horacio Brakus JD

Last Updated:

Views: 6118

Rating: 4 / 5 (51 voted)

Reviews: 82% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Horacio Brakus JD

Birthday: 1999-08-21

Address: Apt. 524 43384 Minnie Prairie, South Edda, MA 62804

Phone: +5931039998219

Job: Sales Strategist

Hobby: Sculling, Kitesurfing, Orienteering, Painting, Computer programming, Creative writing, Scuba diving

Introduction: My name is Horacio Brakus JD, I am a lively, splendid, jolly, vivacious, vast, cheerful, agreeable person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.