5 Best Road Cycling Shoes You Should Consider

One of your key contact points between you and your bike is your feet so buying the best cycling shoes for riding is something you shouldn't rush.

Next to the bike, shoes and cleats are the two things cyclists say will help them win races. Comfortable shoes can give you increased power when it matters most. 

Today we're going to look at five of the best cycling shoes you can buy in Australia, with fast delivery to your door. Below you'll find guidance on different sizes, colours and features. 

Best Road Cycling Shoes

1. tommaso Strada Elite

best road cycling shoes
  • Moulded foot bed
  • Adaptable cleat brands
  • Good entry level shoe
  • Sharp looking colours

Sizes Available: EU40-48 

Material: Premium microfiber

Wide Fit Available: No

Fastening System: Quick lace, Velcro straps

Colours Available: Black

Are you looking for a value for money (not cheap, value) cycling shoe which has all the features of the high-end brands without the hefty price tag?


The Strada Elite cycling shoe from Tommaso is a high-performance road shoe which will give you all you’re looking for in terms of comfort, power, maximum compatibility, and a precision fit at an affordable price.


Optimised for road, commuting or touring, the Strada offers elite race-level features such as 100% carbon fibre cleat plate inset in the nylon sole.


This creates a rigid cleat area for maximum power transfer and efficient pedal strokes. The cleat area is compatible with SPD-SL, SPD, Look, and Speedplay cleats so you’re good to go whichever pedals you’re riding with.


The ultra-comfortable upper is made from microfibre with mesh inserts for breathability around the entire foot. The footbed is a moulded, breathable and removable EVA insert.


The fit is perfect to your foot, and the Reel Knob dialled speed lacing system remembers your perfect fit every time. A separate toe box Velcro strap keeps your toes secure as well.


In terms of sizing, go with the Size Guide and your foot measurement as these shoes will adjust to your foot within a few rides.


And the shoes look pretty rad made from pleather and sporting all black with venting and silver details.


2. PEARL IZUMI

  • Comfortable design
  • 1:1 Composite power plate
  • 3-bolt road cleat & SPD
  • Easy slip on/off design

Sizes Available: EU38-52 

Material: Seamless composite

Wide Fit Available: Yes

Fastening System: 1:1 Anatomic 3 strap closure

Colours Available: Black and Black/White/Yellow

The SELECT road shoe from PEARL IZUMI, a brand well known for its sporting apparel, features a re-engineered upper for a fully bonded construction.


The thinking behind this was to provide instant comfort. They also created an improved and stiffer nylon plate for better acceleration and longer foot support on long rides.


So, the upper is now a 3-layer seamless composite construction with mesh throughout the entire upper which offers exceptional ventilation around the entire foot and eliminates any hotspots in the foot by moulding to your foot shape after a few rides.


The mesh flows through to the inside of the upper as well for additional breathability. They have thoughtfully included an odour-resistant treatment inside the shoe as well.


There is a removable insole for aeration and odour elimination

The shoe has an anatomic 3-strap closure which applies no pressure to your instep, thereby avoiding any pain or discomfort in that area. The Velcro-strap closures are quick and easy to slip the shoe on and look good too.


The composite power plate features a nylon forefoot insert for a lightweight stiffness (rating 6) and durability.


The shoe also has an EVA foam and rubber heel bumper for comfort and stability when walking.


And there is a 3-bolt road cleat. It is SPD compatible.


Coming in four different colour variations the PI cycle shoes are also stylish good-lookers.


3. Zol Stage Road Cycling Shoes

  • Easy to clean
  • Budget friendly price
  • Fibreglass-injected sole

Sizes Available: EU38-47

Material: Synthetic leather

Wide Fit Available: No

Fastening System: 3 Velcro straps

Colours Available: White

Coming in as a budget-friendly and perhaps an entry-level road cycling shoe is the Zol Stage shoe.


The shoes are made from a combination of synthetic leather and mesh in the upper for breathability and ventilation. The insoles are perforated as well for additional drainage of perspiration and rainwater. They are easy to clean as well – simply wipe down with a damp cloth.


The sole is a fibreglass-injected nylon which is a rigid platform for riding. The sole has two drainage holes as well. It also features rubber tips on the front and heel for anti-slip when walking.


There are three strong Velcro closure straps to safely secure the foot while on the bike.

The cleat has 3 bolts and is compatible with Look, Shimano SPD-SL, Shimano PD, Speedplay Road, Time Road, and all road pedals.


Although the Zol Stage is primarily a road shoe there is a bonus 2 bolt cleat for compatibility with SPD, Crank Brothers, and all MTB shoe pedals.


The shoes do run large in size so go down up to a full size. They weigh 286gms.


These are great shoes not only for road cycling but also for gym cycle classes and workouts and indoor spin classes. And they look pretty sharp in the white on black!


4. Northwave Sonic 2 Shoe Black/Fluro Yellow

  • SLW2 dial plus extra strap
  • SPD pedal compatible
  • Integrated heel system
  • 3 Velcro strap design

Sizes Available: EU35-50 

Material: Premium microfiber

Wide Fit Available: Yes

Fastening System: SLW2 dial plus extra strap

Colours Available: Black

The Sonic 2 bike shoe from Northwave is a budget-friendly bike enthusiast's accessory with a lot to offer a new entrant to the scene.


The sole is made from NRG air carbon and fibreglass reinforced materials with a stiffness index of 8.0. This means that all the energy that you’re putting into the pedals will be transferred through to the bike’s wheels. The sole also features 5 vents for ventilation and drainage of perspiration and rainwater.


The upper is a thermo-welded layer construction of multiple layers without overlap to provide a lightweight and breathable yet highly supportive and moulded shoe.


The closure is a unique SLW2 which is a dial closure plus extra strap, with a full release by a single button, making it super easy to get on and off. These three asymmetrical closure straps avoid creating hotspots and pressure points across the top of your feet.

The shoe also features an integrated heel system for efficient heel retention in the shoe and prevention of unnecessary and undesirable heel lift.


The shoes are compatible with SPD clipless pedal systems. They are stiff yet still light, comfortable and responsive.


The shoes come in a cool black with fluoro yellow accents to add a bit of style to your ride.


5. Shimano RP1 Shoes Black

  • SPD, SPD-SL cleat compatible
  • Glass fibre soles
  • Supportive shoes

Sizes Available: EU39-48 

Material: Premium microfiber

Wide Fit Available: No

Fastening System: Dual hook and loop straps

Colours Available: Black

From Shimano, the world’s largest manufacturer of bike components, comes the RP1 bicycle shoes in black. These shoes are at the low-price end of the bike shoe market and are ideal for first-timers who are perhaps still working out what they like in a bicycle shoe, or perhaps don't ride a lot and don't want to spend a fortune on accessories.


The shoes have a sturdy synthetic leather upper which is both lightweight and durable. They have a low profile for good ankle mobility. The mesh lining provides optimum ventilation for your feet while you’re riding.


These shoes have a lightweight reinforced fibreglass/nylon sole. The closure is a dual hook and loop Velcro strap system for a reliable and secure fit every time. The reflective highlights on the heel cups ensure good visibility to other road users.


The shoes are ideal for indoor cycle workouts as well as road cycling, but there is no sacrifice of performance wherever you choose to wear them.


These shoes do run small so going up a half size is recommended.


They are compatible with SPD and SPD-SL cleats.


Overall, they are a very comfortable fit and supportive shoe for pedalling.


How To Choose Best Road Cycling Shoes

Cycling shoes are designed to be light, yet stiff at the same time, offering efficiency when pedalling. To achieve this, manufacturers often use mesh panels to keep your feet cool in summer and drain any water during winter. A sole is also designed for attaching clipless pedal cleats which attach you to your pedals. 

Cleats were invented over 30 years ago from skiing, it's the same method to keep you locked to the bike but easy to remove in the event of an accident. 

When buying road cycling shoes you'll need to purchase cleats as well. These should be compatible with your pedals, so be sure to check before purchasing. 

Budget

Usually the more you're prepared to spend, the lighter the shoe. This isn't always true but it's a good rule of thumb. Lighter shoes have competitive advantages especially for those looking to compete in races. Expensive shoes usually come with carbon-fibre soles which are much lighter than nylon ones. Every day riders probably won't notice much of a difference. 

Closure System

Different brands use different methods for closing shoes. It's unlikely you'll find anyone offering laces any more as these come undone. Most common are Velcro straps, ratcheting buckles or wire laces that are tightened with dials. 

Materials

You can spend a fortune if you're looking for ultra lightweight shoes but those looking for a good shoe for general riding have a few different options. Premium microfiber materials are most common with other options such as synthetic leather also seen. 

Sizing

Different manufacturers have different sizing with most using European sizing to sell their shoes as most originate there. An EU46 for example is a US12. 

Some brands have wide fit options for those with wider feet but it's uncommon these days. Men and women usually can wear the same shoes, unless a special colour has been developed specifically for women, i.e. pink ones. 

Further reading on which factors to consider. 

Verdict

Ultimately there are many different road cycling shoes out there but combining affordability, review score and features, we believe the tommaso Strada Elite is the best road cycling shoes in Australia.