Launched in 2018, Ride Concepts are the new kids on the MTB shoe block, but can their kicks take on the establishment?
Had you asked me just a few years ago which flat shoe I would recommend, I would probably tell you to look at a Five Ten, and I probably wouldn’t be on my own.
With its sticky Stealth rubber soles and range of styles, Five Ten has sat at the top of the flat pedal tree for a long time now, but over the past couple of years, we’ve started to see their dominance dwindle.
Big biking names have started to chip away at the market, and so far we’ve been impressed with the flat shoes on offer from Bontrager, Ion, Giro and Northwave to name just a few. So now with so many great options available, is there space in the market for a new mountain bike shoe brand?
Back at the end of 2018, Ride Concepts was announced, a new mountain bike shoe brand that hoped to take on the giants of the mountain bike world with a range of flat and SPD shoes with skate shoe styling.
What was impressive at launch was the comprehensive range of shoes that Ride Concepts offered, the various sole compounds and the big name mountain bike stars the company was supporting. Names like Rachel Atherton, Sam Pilgrim, Kyle Strait, Mille Johnset, and many many others.
To kick off a shoe brand that wants to take on Adidas, and have the stars to back them up, Ride Concepts had some backing but is their product any good?
Ride Concepts Hellion
The Hellion lives in the middle of the Ride Concepts all-mountain and enduro range and cost £119.95. Below the Hellion is the more affordable Live Wire at £99.95 and above that, there is the £134.95 Powerline. There’s also the Transition shoe at £154.95, but they’re for the clipped in-crowd.
At £119.95 you get a Rubber Kinetics DST 6.0 High Grip Rubber Outsole. It’s the same rubber compound that the more affordable Live Wire uses, but the upper on the Hellion is designed to offer better water-resistance and durability.
While being more water-resistant, the Hellion is also the lightest shoe of the three. Weighing in at a claimed 421g for a size 10 shoe, it’s not a whole lot lighter than the other models, but as they resist water and mud better they tend to feel lighter throughout the ride while other shoes absorb water and get heavier.
In an effort to keep the Hellion looking good for longer, the upper has anti-abrasion protection over the toe and heel areas, and the synthetic material used for the upper uses an anti-peel coating.
Other features include a gusseted tongue to help prevent dirt and stones getting in the shoe, an elastic lace tidy and a D30 high impact insole. D30 is the same material that is used in a few different knee and elbow pads and has great shock absorbing properities. In the midsole of the Hellion, the idea is to protect against trail shock and absorb big hits.
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|Tested:||by Andi Sykes for 9 months|