scott boa spd shoe

Review: Scott MTB AR BOA – Clip-In Shoes With Flat Benefits

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Scott is well known for making quality bikes across the MTB spectrum, from Nino Schurter’s multiple World Championship wining Scale to Brendan Fairclough’s Gambler. However, the Swiss brand may not be as well known for producing a wide range of biking accessories and clothing too. Recently we’ve had two of Scotts’ 49(!) different pairs of shoes on test, and here Ant runs us through the enduro-ready AR BOA Clip Shoe.

The Scott MTB AR BOA Clip [Ed: catchy name eh?] is essentially a flat shoe that you can clip into. Everything about the shoes screams enduro, with a chunky profile, urban camo side panels and tongue, and fluro yellow highlights. At £159.99 it sits atop of Scott’s trail/enduro offerings.

scott boa spd shoe
These are Scott’s top-end enduro shoes for riders who like to clip into their pedals.

Scott AR BOA Clip Shoes

Starting on the underside the waffle sole is made from Scott’s proprietary ‘Sticki Rubber’. It’s quite a hard compound to the touch, though combined with the waffling does a good job of gripping a platform clip-in pedal when it’s not actually clipped-in.

On the downside this sole profile does little to provide any grip when you’re off the bike as there is nothing to dig into the mud to get purchase. Certainly it’s not a shoe you want to be wearing if you’ve got a lot of muddy hike-a-bike ahead (Scott do a few different rugged soled shoes for that).

I’ve worn these both with platform clip-in pedals as well as more traditional lollypop clip-in pedals. They work well with both, but the big rubber sole best suits the larger platform pedal type where you get the benefits of added surface contact.

scott boa spd shoe cleat
An EVA midsole is wrapped with Scott’s Sticki rubber compound.

Stiffness-wise the AR is a pretty nice in-between and exactly what I want from this kind of shoe. Rigid enough to pedal efficiently on big rides, but flexible enough to walk comfortably too.

A great plus about the ARs is the length of the cleat box. In other shoes I often can’t get my cleats as far back as I’d like them for steep and technical terrain, which means my foot sits much further behind the pedal axle than it does when I’m in flats. These are the first shoes that I’ve worn where I can comfortably get my cleats where I want them and even have space to take them further back.

scott boa spd shoe
Same size shoes, and you can see the vast difference in the size of the outsole.

Moving up from the sole the uppers and tongue are a thick and tough synthetic fibre. Durability has been really good so far and they look like they’ve been worn far less than they have. The protection that the ARs give is really good; there is a chunky toe bumper providing plenty of protection from rocks and a tough high heel box too.

Despite them looking a bit clumpy and Mr Men-esque the excellent double BOA fastenings mean that you can get a good fit, and it’s easy to fine-tune the tension while you’re riding – something that’s impossible with an equivalent lace-up shoe.

Although the shoes have good durability against the rocks they’re not quite as good at keeping out the wet as there are small mesh panels on each side of the upper, and the long cleat slots allow water to seep in from underneath.

scott boa spd shoe
Big toe bumper for protection.

At 1,135g for the pair (size 45, on our scales without cleats) they ain’t light but that’s not really surprising given how robust they are. A light shoe is never going to give you the same level of toe protection as the AR does.

If the AR BOA isn’t quite what you want Scott also offers a few other variations. There’s a women’s version with all the same features but with a women’s specific fit. There is a laced version too, which forgoes the BOA dials in favour of more traditional laces and a £40 lower RRP. And finally there are laced, non-clip versions for those who prefer riding with flats.

scott boa spd shoe
Fluoro and reflective details.


The Scott MTB AR BOA Clip shoes have the most extraordinary clunky name of any shoes I’ve ever worn. On your feet they’re pretty clunky too but with it give a load of protection and durability. If you’ve got the bigger platform clip-in pedals to match they’re a great shoe to give you the benefits of both clipped and flat shoes.

Review Info

Brand: Scott Sports
Product: MTB AR BOA Clip Shoe
From: Scott Sports,
Price: £159.99
Tested: by Ant Jordan for 4 months
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Comments (4)

    I would be interested to know how the Scott size 45 compares to other brands in regards to width and length. How do these compare to a Shimano or Specialized size 45 and what is the reviewers normal shoe of choice?

    My experience is these size-up larger. I’ve taken size 46 shoes in various brands but in these shoes had to go down to size 45 to get the right fit.

    These particular Scott shoes err on the larger side in both length and width. I’ve found them to be bigger than either a typical Specialized or Shimano, width wise they are almost as wide as a FiveTen.
    I hope that helps. Ant

    I have a pair of these and they do size up a bit bigger – great shoe!

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