Adidas continues to build its revived cycling shoe portfolio and the latest product is set to battle it out against the best gravel bike shoes.
With the gravel cycling market remaining robust in its growth prospects, Adidas has reacted with a product it calls 'The Gravel Shoe'. It might not be the last word in indirect German naming (much like the brand’s Road Shoe), but it shows what the dominant active footwear company is capable of producing.
Available in either practical charcoal or a more vivid aqua and coral colourway (called Pulse Aqua), The Gravel Shoe has been designed to deliver comfort and durability over everything else.
Construction adheres to strict sustainability goals by Adidas. The upper is made from a 50 per cent recycled material composition, better known as the brand’s Primegreen. Impressively, no virgin polyester is sourced or spun into The Gravel Shoe’s construction.
Riding on gravel - not with it
Experienced gravel riders will know the annoyance of debris or hard sediment bits getting into a shoe, especially after you have dismounted and done a hike-a-bike. Adidas designers have integrated a prominent cuff seal to keep out dust and small stones.
The Gravel Shoe’s cuff might look like a permanently attached ankle sock, but it should make your gravel riding experience a lot more enjoyable.
Adidas industrial designers have chosen to use the simplest securing mechanism for these new shoes. The Gravel Shoe’s laces thread through loops and are tucked into a towage tab to prevent from being ingested by your drivetrain.
Underneath The Gravel Shoe, there is a traditional two-bolt cleat box, which offers fore and aft adjustability and a sole conducive to walking comfort.
Adidas product planners are clearly aware that gravel riders do more dismounted movement while on a gravel ride than road cyclists.
The Gravel Shoe has a thermoplastic polyurethane sole. It features ergonomically shaped and placed grippers at the fore and aft sections to keep you from slipping on loose rocks, roots or the coffee shop floor.
Adidas has priced The Gravel shoe at US$170 / £160 / €180. The size spread is from women’s 4 to 14, and men’s 5 to 15.
Lance Branquinho is a Namibian born media professional, with 15-years of experience in technology and engineering journalism covering anything with wheels. Being from Namibia, he knows a good gravel road when he sees one, and he has raced some of Africa’s best-known mountain bike stage races, such as Wines2Wales and Berg&Bush.
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