Shimano AM7 Shoes - Review

Mar 6, 2018
by Mike Kazimer  
Shimano AM7 review


The name might be familiar, but Shimano's AM7 shoes are all new for 2018. Coming up with wildly clever product names isn't really something that Shimano focuses on, and while previously there was a flat pedal shoe called the AM 700, this new model is for clipless pedals, and is dubbed the AM 701. Clear as mud? Perfect, let's move on to the details.

The AM 7 has a simple, low-top design, with a neoprene cuff around the ankle that's meant to keep rocks and other debris from making their way into the shoe. A single velcro strap is in place to adjust the fit over the top of the foot, and it also serves double duty by keeping those laces from flapping around in the breeze. There's a rubber bumper around the toe box for extra protection, while large mesh panels are located on either side to aid with ventilation.

Shimano AM7 Details
• Intended use: trail / enduro
• Neoprene ankle cuff
• Weight: 466 grams (per shoe, size 45)
• Sizes: 36-48
• Colors: grey / green
• MSRP: $130 USD
www.bike.shimano.com

Shimano rates the AM7's sole a 6 on their stiffness scale. For reference, their DH-oriented AM9 gets a 5, and the more race-focused ME7 gets an 8. Available in the grey and blue color show, as well as a retina-searing lime green option, the AM7 retails for $130 USD.


Shimano AM7 review
Nobody likes rocks in their shoes, which is why that neoprene cuff is nice to see.
Shimano AM7 review
The cleat mounting channel has plenty of room for adjustment, even for riders that like their cleats relatively far back.


Performance

I've had very good luck with the fit of Shimano's cycling shoes over the last few years, and that trend continued with the AM7. They're as comfortable as a well-broken-in pair of skate shoes, but with a sole that's stiff enough to use on long rides without any discomfort. All of my rides took place on a set of XT pedals, and I didn't encounter any hot spots or cramped feet. That being said, riders looking for shoes that are as stiff as a 2x4 will want to look elsewhere – the AM7 aren't XC race slippers, nor do they claim to be. Instead, they're a nice casual shoe that avoids any superfluous features – simplicity is the name of the game here.

Off the bike comfort is excellent as well. I hiked up plenty of slippery slopes, most of them covered with a messy mix of snow and mud, and didn't run into any issue with the traction the AM7s provide.

The AM7's upper material doesn't absorb much water, which meant that even on super wet rides it never felt like I had lead weights strapped to my feet. They also dry quickly, and it never took more than one cycle on my boot dryer (a required accessory for winter riding here in the Pacific Northwest) before they were ready for another rainy ride.


Shimano AM7 review
There are some scuff marks around the inner ankle portion of each shoe.
Shimano AM7 review
And a little bit of peeling rubber on the toe of the left shoe.


Durability

I don't go too crazy worrying about whether or not my riding shoes are clean – after all, they're just going to get dirty again, but the AM7's do clean up very nicely. Even after being fully submerged in a puddle of sticky mud all it took was a quick rinse with the hose to get them looking almost as good as new.

After approximately 30 rides, most of them in the mud and rain, the only signs of wear the shoes are exhibiting are scuff marks on the inside of each shoe where my ankles occasionally rub against the crank arms, and a slightly peeling outsole at the front of one shoe. I purposely avoided dabbing any Shoe Goo or something similar on the peeling portion to see what would happen, and it's remained unchanged for the last two weeks of riding. I'll update this review if any other issues arise, but so far I'd say that the AM7's are in the middle of the road as far as overall durability goes.



Pinkbike's Take

bigquotesComfortable, light, quick drying, and free of any gimmicky technology. That pretty much sums up my wishlist for a set of mountain bike shoes, and Shimano's AM7 fits the bill perfectly. 
Mike Kazimer








99 Comments

  • + 48
 For those times when dad has to shred at noon, but the white New Balances don't come SPD ready.
  • - 14
flag WAKIdesigns (Mar 6, 2018 at 8:53) (Below Threshold)
 Stop, stop, stop, just stop right there!

Laughing at New Balance shoes, although deserved, takes our attention away from genuine killer of our clothing culture when it comes to shoes. I speak of fkng running shoes. Why on Earth it is so acceptable to go around in this hideous, acid techno f*ck like Asics or Saucony. People come to project meetings in these AND almost nobody reacts, some even ask: oh are you running the city marathon? oh were you jogging before the meeting to get your serotonin bahahahah. f*ck you. Before anyone has anything to say about how terrible 510s look, I want to you to burn at least one pair of running shoes. No no and no, there is no function to it, the only thing these do with their vomit colors and reflective silvery decals is they scream: I AM A SERIOUS RUNNER!!! and you are not. You are just a person who moves his legs faster and bumps up his pulse a bit, only to then stop and go around bragging about your runners knee syndrome. f*ck you and your horrific crap that nobody but lost 30-50 year olds like, and only because they see them on instagram feed of a half naked, part time yoga teacher, next to some bullshit inspirational quote, so that she gets those shoes for free. A person triggered to begin healthy lifestyle by seeing an old man eating a Salad may fancy these too.
  • + 79
 @WAKIdesigns: Is like when you wear riding shoes and it says you're a serious rider when all you really are is some form of social media commentator?
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: or you know some people just want shoes that stand our?
  • + 12
 @gavlaa: I said it openly a number od times I refuse to ride bikes in order to keep my opinions outrageous to earn me millions of Follow dollars
  • - 8
flag Airfreak (Mar 6, 2018 at 10:02) (Below Threshold)
 @WAKIdesigns: I hate people who wear running shoes to work or "tennis shoes" in general. That said I can no longer wear my 510's to work, not because of a rule but because they leave streak marks everywhere. I only noticed this after it was apparent my daily route in my lab was burned into the floor.
  • + 11
 Besides looking like old man orthopedic shoes, the redicilous price, and falling appart after a few weeks they sound great?!
  • + 10
 @Airfreak: why do you even care what people wear ?
  • + 11
 @WAKIdesigns: I too am offended by the absurd colour palletes used in today's running shoes. More absurd, is that jogging is now called "running", as if all those slobs plodding around out there are moving with any real urgency.
  • + 2
 @fecalmaster: Really, what is it with MTB shoes? 510s are hideous. Those Shimanos above are hideous. Can we just get a decent pair of SPD cycling shoes that look like low top hikers? Or is that not cool enough these days? I'm rocking an old pair of Performance Bike SPDs. they are wearing out after 10 years and I need a new set, but everything is either outrageously priced or just embarrassingly awful to look at. Frown
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: I think even worse than running shoes are basketball shoes, but maybe that's more of an American phenomenon that Europeans have yet to be afflicted with. Seriously, I enjoy a good game of pick-up basketball, and it's harder and harder to pick up a set of good, functional shoes that don't make me look like Superfly. I agree with your point on running shoes, too, lately, but I think that's fading a little bit and things are getting back to normal. Yes, 5-10s are ugly, too. I think it just comes down to no one is marketing to us anymore. Our time has come and gone. We are now invisible. So you're either left with Dad shoes, or something a 16-20-something would wear. That's why things are as they are.
  • + 4
 @Poulsbojohnny: My thoughts exactly. I'm willing to allow for some compromises based on functionality. For example, I think velcro and boa fasteners work better than laces. you need a relatively stiff sole. So in some respect the shoes will "look" like bike shoes, but I think there's got to be a way to make them look more like low- or mid-top hikers rather than either pointy, silver ballerina slippers, or correctional orthopedic clodhoppers. There's gotta be a middle ground, but for whatever reason the correctional orthopedic clodhoppers in weird colors became cool, so that's what we've got to work with in the mountain bike world.

I just shrug and realize no one is marketing to me anymore. None of it is really a deal breaker -- it is what it is, and I just pick what I think is the least offensive looking and go with it. They're just bike shoes. But I just can't help thinking they could do much better.
  • + 1
 @gavlaa: hahaha ah well played dude!
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: Follow dollars get u nowhere in life dude! ????
  • + 3
 @Poulsbojohnny: and this is where we need Vans to hook up
With 5-10 rubber underneath.
  • + 1
 @JesseE: I plod along between sets of intervals.. Gets me way fitter than than these 3 to 4 hr plodalongs that these people do!
  • + 1
 @Poulsbojohnny: I think your just stuck in 98!
  • + 3
 If a skate sneaker company made a mtb shoe it’d be all over.
  • + 4
 @WAKIdesigns: I mean, I wear running and basketball sneakers casually because I like the way they look, but you do you, maybe stop caring so much about what people wear.
  • + 3
 @nyhc00: Vans had a good clipless shoe a while back, but it's been discontinued. I still have mine -- they are a little heavy, but I've taken some good whacks with flying rocks with those shoes, so the protection is good. Great for downhill riding. The soles were a little floppier than I would like, but they looked and functioned pretty much like a "normal" shoe off the bike, so you could maybe go to a store or into a restaurant after a ride without slipping and sliding around.
  • - 2
 @trmcl24: we were brchn about shoe fashion, I just pointed out in a hopefully humorous manner that there are much worse examples Big Grin
  • - 1
 @TheR: vans clip ins although stylish, had a big downside and that was that you could not place the cleats behind the ball of your foot which is the optimal position for most people. They had them way too far forward.

@bohns1: Followian pesos will be worth more than bit coin, remember who told you that
  • + 0
 @WAKIdesigns: I was going to say that this is not your finest hour, but then I remembered that I've got a thing about running socks. And I don't mean in a good way.
To be almost relevant, there are simple solutions to all this and they win medals.
  • + 1
 @Poulsbojohnny: Agreed. I have a pair of Mavic Alpines in a brown leather/ olive color. They just look like regular hiking shoes. I believe @mavic still makes them, but not in a subdued colorway.

testy.bikeboard.pl/images/galerie/slider-x28ury_img_0499.jpg
  • + 0
 @WAKIdesigns: You're right! I was able to get my cleats where I wanted them, but they were mounted on the lower mounts, pulled all the way back as far as I could push those things down. Shoe size and foot size (and the anatomy of my foot in terms of where it rest in the shoe) could have played a factor here in getting them to sit right for me.. I can see where people might have had a problem with cleat placement. I was surprised how forward it was. I forgot about how strange that was until you mentioned it.
  • + 4
 @WAKIdesigns: I f*cking love how angry you sound about this shoe epidemic. P.S. I read it in the voice of Eminem as Stan.
  • + 1
 @TheR: now you mention it I do remember those, a lot of people wore them for bmx racing.
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: But Mary Jane stock has made me hand over fist in the last year.. I'm good for new bike day every two seasons for a long time now! Remember who told you that son!
  • + 12
 Large-footed buyers beware: I recently ordered a pair of size 48 AM5's to replace my aged DX SPD shoes. The "new" 48 is quite small, like a 46. I have looked high and low - doesn't seem like Shimano offers large enough shoes across its entire lineup. Some 49s in a recreation-spec shoe. I guess I'll be giving Five.10 my money.
  • + 7
 Odd. I've worn 45 in every Shimano shoe I've tried over the last 8 years. New AM9s are no exception.
  • + 2
 I wear a size 15 shoe. I've found the specialized 2fo to be the best for durability and fit. All of my 5.10s (aside from my old school Minnaar boat anchors) have blown up in a matter of months.
  • + 2
 Also confirmed, something is different with sizing. I had a pair of M086 shoes in size 42 and they were great until they literally started to fall apart. I bought a pair of AM-5 in the same size, 42, and they did not fit well. The toe box was much smaller and it had way too many hot spots. Switched to Specialized shoes and never looked back.
  • + 7
 Wow, I knew Shimano was downsizing but that’s extreme
  • + 2
 classic shimano problem... I wear 5.10´s hellcats old version in 47, fits perfect... shimano in 48 -> no chance...
But ne new hellcat pro are also a bit smaller so I have to wear 48...
  • + 3
 @mitch32:
this isn't shimano exclusive problem

usually shoes that im buying from different manufacturers differ by up to 3 sizes and even sometimes for same model (my nike new nike dunks are 44.5 while 5+years ago 46 was slightly too small)
  • + 1
 Shimano probably have multiple shoe factories that don't all tie-in with sizing. Helmets, clothes and shoes - all need buying in-store unless you're repeat buying the exact same item
  • + 1
 Every bike shoe I've ever bought I've had to size up two sizes, it's weird.
  • + 3
 Thanks for the info. Wish shoe reviews would go into fit more. How do they fit width wise?
  • + 2
 Bummer. I've been a 46 in Shimano shoes for 23 years, it makes it easy to order them online. They've all fit more or less the same.
  • + 1
 I have also strange experience with Shimano shoes. I had for years Shimano SH-M088 in size 47. Without a question perfect fit. Last year I tried to be cheap and bought flat pedal Shimano AM7 (2016) in size 47. Utter shait in terms of grip and sole longevity. But fit was relatively OK, not superb, but 46 size was too small. Few month back I bought over the internet Shimano AM9 (2018 ) also in 47. This shoe has a lot less padding than the AM7 model I already had, so my foot is gliding all over. So beware.
I am very keen to try this shoe in 46, because it's superb in terms of the clip-in ability. Also the sole is relatively soft, even so in bigger sizes, so pair them with pedals with large platform (mallet etc).
  • + 1
 @gticket:
I stand with that same question to.
How do they fit compared to the ME7?
Are they as wide as 5.10 vXi? More or less turned in/pointy toebox?
  • + 10
 Sometimes these comment sections get a bit absurd. This is a review article about a pair of shoes. I read the article to understand comfort and stiffness. I read the comments to see if anyone else has worn these shoes and can comment about sizing and their opinions of reliability.

What I get is a bunch of kids saying their dad would wear these cause they look odd.

Sam Hill, Gren M, Tahnee Seagrave, etc. could wear these shoes and you A) would buy them and B) wouldn't notice because their going so fast you can't make out the f*cking shoe on their feet.

Moral of Story: A) If your complaining about how a shoe looks, you aren't going fast enough. B) You should be wearing jandals on the podium and at the bar anyway....
  • + 5
 I’ve been testing and wearing these for 1 year.

The fit is great, improved toebox shape feels really good.

Lighter than current AM9 and breathes better.

Durability is solid. No issues.

I wish all my shoes had the little neoprene debris guard, it’s a great little addition.

They look way cooler than you think, when on a rider. The design will grow on you (and others).

These have become my go-to clipin shoe, nice balance of fit, comfort, functionality and style.

I hope the input is helpful.

DB@EB
  • - 3
 a) To be honest no I wouldn't
b) We have photography and stills now so you would be able to make them out

a) I go plenty fast although I don't see what that's got to do with wearing any brand of shoe?
b) ?!

Sorry, I'm just teasing and in a way just saying chill dude, not all the comments have been negative and looking through there's plenty of useful info. Everyone's entitled to an opinion no matter how daft.

Seriously though, they may be comfortable and work well, but man they do look, well, like something my dad would wear! lol
  • + 10
 I notice it says all rides were on xt pedals, it would be nice to know how they interface with a larger platform pedal like a mallet or saint etc
  • + 3
 No issues between my AM9 (same tread pattern/depth/cleat track) and my Mallet E's. Positive firm engagement, but not difficult to get into/out of. Little bit of flex gives a touch of feel for the platform, too.
  • + 1
 @scvkurt03:
I have some 5.10 impact vxi's and find they don't play nicely with my mallet DH pedals, way too much interference between pins and sole.
  • + 1
 @DC1988: have you tried a cleat spacer? Crankbrothers has their shoe shields. I'm sure someone else has something similar. Some cheap and simple washers would likely do the trick just to try it out.

I don't have your exact combo, but I was having trouble with shoe rubber interfering with my traction pads. The shoe shields spaced the cleat out a little further and it was a very noticeable improvement.
  • + 1
 @JaredHarzan:
I'm using the spacer and have wound the pins further in but it feels like a compromise. I have a pair of DMT enduro shoes which work fine with the pins fully out, I don't want to have to adjust the pins every time I switch shoes and more spacers on the 5.10's is likely to make it feel like I'm wearing stilts!
  • + 1
 @DC1988: grind down the rubber on your fivetens to match the thickness on your DMTs?

My only other real suggestion would be to pick one pair of shoes and set up your pedals for it. Maybe not what you're looking for, but it'd likely solve the issue....
  • + 1
 @JaredHarzan:
The weird thing is the dmt's have a far thicker and more aggressive looking sole than the 5.10's, my only thought is the stealth sole is just too grippy for clipless shoes, the vibram sole on the DMT seems much better.

Overall I think ditching the 5.10's is probably the best bet, I don't find them especially comfortable or foot shaped anyway.
  • + 6
 Teva is long dead and buried. Adidas is doing their best to run 5.10 in to the ground and succeeding spectacularly at burning up any good will that was left there. Shimano is Dollar Tree quality at Target prices with Wal Mart style.

What is a rider to do?
  • + 3
 My Shimano shoes have held up better than anything, and I ride a lot in really rocky stuff (and do trail work in them). Currently using the AM9's and they're amazing. Bontragers before the AM9's, Giros before that, and Shimanos have far outlasted both.
  • + 1
 Specialized 2FO.
  • + 1
 @MTB-Colada: you are right, but I just can't bring my self to use a Specialized product.
  • + 1
 I still run my Shimano MT53, I like that my ankles are a bit protected and you can hike quite well with these shoes. I do am afraid that this is the last year of their life, but not many companies seem to make shoes like this. Will be difficult to replace them
  • + 3
 five ten is dead now, with poor manufacturing coming. the company sold out to addidas. so yeah, ready to try a new shoe brand.
  • + 1
 I don't see a point to buy 5.10 clip in shoes ever since they started making cleat hole ...bare with me... so big and chamfered. All models until Maltese Falcons could have been used as flat pedal shoes to quite large degree of success, but now... I prefer Shimano
  • + 1
 I have no idea what's happened to five ten but I have been riding their shoes for years and I ordered the same shoe, same size and the fit was awful. Really narrow Next brand
  • + 0
 @jamesdippy: adidas now runs all the five ten shoes with odd sizing. terrible.
  • + 1
 @DH-Angel: ahhh so it wasn't me thinking my foot has gained weight !

Way too narrow.
  • + 1
 AM9's are they way to go! The best and only shoe I've used for the past several years. Use 'em for massive hike-a-bikes, big mountain riding, DH trails, and casual XC. I even used only those shoes (along with a pair of flip flops) while riding and hiking around the Annapurnas last year. They're super comfy, casual, and warm!
  • + 1
 I have found Shimano doesn't make nearly as many shoes partially or wholly with leather as they once did. The synthetic shoes, no matter how vented, tend to get pretty hot and not breath well at all.

That's why my mom only bought us NorthStar running shoes in the 70's and 80's; they didn't stink when you sweat in them.
I just googled them. They still look dope. Shimano could take some design cues from them.
  • + 0
 Never had rocks get into any of my shoes (maybe consider walking less if you do?), and these neoprene cuffs are really annoying to get your foot into.
Problem I didn't have - solved!
Oh and a strap to keep the laces out of the way - problem that could have been solved by having no laces - solved!
  • + 1
 Why does the shoe in the first picture look different from the shoe in the picture showing the peeling rubber? This is a weak point of a lot of shoes, and is clearly designed differently between these two photos.
  • + 1
 Pretty sure it's just the other side of the shoe.
  • + 1
 I have the new AM9s, a pretty similar shoe. About two weeks on them, and I'm pretty happy with them. Definitely more flex than my old M163, but the more rearward cleat position feels right, particularly descending.
  • + 2
 Those things are FUGLY. It looks like they are made for the senior AARP crowd....which I am one and still wouldn't wear them if they were free.
  • + 4
 Great for ripping around the gated community.
  • + 3
 They're for when you have a trail ride at 8 but have to be at shuffleboard by 9
  • + 9
 I think these are dope.
Did I say that right, dope?
  • + 1
 @C1RCU1T: SOLD. They know me on a personal level.
  • + 1
 Anyone know how the stiffness on these would compare to the Giro Terraduro? I dig shimano for the simplicity, efficiency and economy but have found I like a bit of stiffness for the pedal.
  • + 2
 Any half sizes? Tried whole sizes 45 and 46 in Shimano MTB shoes and lie squarely in between. I don't understand the lack of half sizing by Shimano.
  • + 1
 really nice shoe. Just purchased it running away from Five Ten already bored image... sick pedal efficiency and really comfortable!
  • + 1
 That side peeling also happened to my AM9. Still so I consider'em as good shoes. But I hope they'll fix that for the future models.
  • + 2
 What I want to know is--are the laces easy to tie?? To they tie differently than most other shoes?
  • + 1
 was looking al over for a clipless shoe, saw shimano AM/ but hasn't arrived yet to my country, finally bought a Specialized 2FO CLiplite shoe, up to now excellent shoe.
  • + 1
 Get the AM9's. I love mine. Great off the bike too (and for trail work while riding).
  • + 1
 Wow these shoes are Ugly, even Fugly. Shimano shoe design department must be all blind.
  • + 2
 What's wrong w/ a pair of VANS Sk8-His instead?
  • + 2
 Would you wear those to the pub? Hell no so why would i ever buy em?
  • + 1
 Those are hideous, if someone was wearing those in our group, we would kick them out
  • + 2
 They're shoes. People need shoes.
  • + 1
 5 -10 may be dying , but not dead yet
  • + 1
 Is there a review coming of GR7 or GR9?

@pinkbike
  • + 2
 grey/green
  • + 2
 old AM9 > *
  • + 1
 I'm a fan, minus the neoprene
  • + 1
 AM9> these
  • + 1
 AM9!!!
  • + 0
 Ulgy as hell
  • - 2
 *ugly
  • + 1
 @cbro7092: ulgly ass heell ye boi
  • + 1
 @cbro7092: misspelling happens because texting is retarded anyway, it's called an accident, everyone does it so it's ok
  • + 1
 @markar: Cool story bro
  • + 1
 @cbro7092: I didn't notice I misspelled ugly, so what, get over it weirdo
  • + 1
 @markar: Ah ok, now you do. Have a great day!
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