Shimano ME7 Shoe Review

by Brian Mullin on November 28, 2016


The new Shimano ME7 mountain bike shoe utilizes a Michelin dual-density rubber outsole for traction and durability, a carbon reinforced midsole that offers pedaling efficiency with excellent comfort and hikeability characteristics. It features superb armor and padding protection for the sides, ankles, and toes and an easy to use ratcheting and speed lacing closure system and a functional stretch Neoprene ankle collar to prevent debris intrusion.

The ME7, which stands for ‘Mountain Enduro’ comes in Euro size 38-48 (US 5-12) and retails for $200.


Retention System

The ratchet strap itself is fixed to the bottom outer part of the shoe, while the ratcheting buckle is attached to a separate top flap that comes up over the instep. You push the lower button on the buckle to release the latch and then pull back the lace shield/cover and extend open the speed lacing system.


Once the lacing is open, the shoe expands outwards making for easy foot insertion. Reverse the order to tighten everything down and using the top lever on the buckle latches everything down tightly. The upper lever on the ratchet pulls your foot back down into the heel cup, making for simple fine tuning of the shoe fit. The lower ratchet button sometimes feels a bit stiff to release the system, but that also helps prevent any accidental releases when it gets hit by trail obstructions.

The quick or speed lacing system is also easy to tweak the fit, and you could loosen and tighten things depending on sock thickness or how your foot was feeling, and the end of the toggle had a functional Velcro tab to keep it securely in place and out of the way. Once everything was in place and tucked away, the large Velcro cover flap kept your foot protected and the laces clean. The wide tongue had plenty of padding, so I never felt like the lacing system pinched the top of my foot, and also, it offered additional protection when getting hit by trail debris.

If needed you can replace both portions of the ratchet system if they wear out or get damaged, though I haven’t had any issue with them as yet.


Toe Section

The front of the toe has a functional rocker coming off the sole which aids with walking and hiking, making for an ergonomic toe roll. The outer edges of the toe and heel box had additional armor sections which provided buffering for the foot and sturdiness and durability to the shoe, and I greatly appreciated the protection and safety they offered when my foot was getting banged up in rocky terrain. The top of the toe section has a large Kevlar covered vent that provides some much-needed ventilation and cooling for the shoe, though it also let water in if it poured rain. Standard stream crossings kept your feet dry since the toe venting was decently permeable, but multiple passes through streams or puddles will likely get some water into the shoe.


Heel Section

The heel cup was beefy and provided a little Kevlar covered vent for cooling with a useful tall Neoprene cuff which prevented dirt and crud from getting into the shoe, which is a pretty standard problem on the sandy and gravelly trails I frequent. The interior of the heel cup was incredibly well padded which offered lots of cushioning and prevented nasty ankle hits and aided with any rubbing issues from hiking and pedaling.



Their TORBAL (Torsional Balance) carbon reinforced shank midsole optimizes the pedaling efficiency at the cleat interface, yet it provides some lateral movement at the heel for improved comfort and flexibility. Overall I found the system offered a perfect blend of fantastic hiking capabilities and great pedaling performance with enough of each characteristic that wasn’t overshadowed by the other. I was quite happy that I could comfortably hike and pedal long distances, though compared to an x-country race shoe it didn’t offer as much high-powered pedaling performance. Even when the ratchet is cranked down, I noticed a small amount of heel lift when hiking on steeper terrain, though I did not feel anything happening while I was pedaling.

The Michelin dual density outsole offered excellent traction and stability and had so far been pretty durable for all my regular hike-a-bike forays. Currently, the only spot I have seen any wear is right in front of the cleat slot, and even then it’s only minor scratches. Its broad heel platform offered up good support and the aggressive lugs with their hiking boot like shapes and directionality provided superb grip and adhesion on rocks, dirt, and roots. There is some useful tread under the arch which provides an excellent platform to ride the pedals when not clipped in.

Instead of placing EVA foam under the heel they built it into the orthopedic insole, and it provided excellent shock absorption and comfort without changing the pedaling dynamics.

It has a long cleat channel for the holes which allows for a great deal of forward to rearward mounting positions, though I prefer mine almost at the very back.


Overall Impressions

The 3/4 height or mid-cut ME7 is an extremely comfortable All Mountain bike shoe, with ample amounts of padding in the inner heel box, the tongue and the back of the insole. I tested a size 43 shoe, which is my usual sizing, and it fit about perfect with oodles of comfort, and the somewhat wide toe box offered plenty of wiggle room for the foot, while still providing support around the forefoot and ankles. It has a vent port at the toe, and on the top of the heel along with some small perforations along the side, which offered some adequate air movement. They felt a bit warm in extreme heat conditions, though they were overall functional in everything down to sub-freezing temperatures and snow. They provided plenty of wet protection in most conditions, but the toe vent port allowed water infiltration in downpours and after multiple stream and puddle crossings.

The burly shoes offer excellent foot protection and safety with the wrap around armor on the toe and heel sections and plenty of sturdy material everywhere else. While hiking and riding along harsh terrain and bumping into things, the toe box and armoring around the edges have provided excellent protection, and ruggedness. The Michelin outsoles offered excellent traction and grip on rocks, dirt and roots and the toe rocker and TORBAL midsole provided superb walking and hiking characteristics, yet they still offered up great pedaling performance, though shy of x-country race stiffness.

These have to be one of the easiest shoes I have ever used to take on and off, and the ratcheting and speed lacing systems were easy to use and were highly functional to fine tune the fit. Slipping them on felt like I was wearing a well-worn pair of comfy slippers or gloves.


Bottom Line

The Shimano ME7 is an excellent and comfortable All Mountain bike shoe with plenty of features, including the grippy Michelin outsole and the stiff yet flexible carbon midsole. It features superb heel and toe box armor and material protection and generous padding inside the heel and tongue for comfort and safety, and cushioning and absorption on the insole. The elastic cuff keeps errant debris from entering the shoe, and the Kevlar toe and heel vents provide decent air movement though they allow a slight egress of water during downpours and multiple stream/puddles crossings. The ratcheting buckle and speed lacing system are easy to use and help to fine tune the fit and the large over flap lace shield keeps everything clean. The Michelin outsole lugs provide excellent traction and grip on any terrain, and it works in synergy with the carbon reinforced TORBAL midsole to provide hiking and pedaling performance, with a slight nod to the walking abilities.

Overall this is a highly comfy shoe that is easy to take on and off and provides excellent hiking characteristics and great pedaling performance and superb foot protection.


  • Comfortable
  • Toe, Heel, and material armoring
  • Ratcheting and speed lace closure system
  • Heel, tongue, and insole cushioning
  • Elastic heel cuff
  • Grippy Michelin outsole
  • Stiff yet flexible TORBAL carbon midsole


  • Heel lift during steep hiking
  • Front vent port allows water infiltration
  • Warm in hot conditions
  • Not quite x-country race pedaling performance

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