This review featured as part of the Kit Essentials grouptest in issue 142 of Singletrack World.
Sturdy, sticky and race-focussed
- Price: £119.99
- From: endurasport.com
- Tested By: Benji
There is plenty of ‘white coat scientist’ tech in the upper and the insole of the MT500 Burner Flat but… I’m never really swayed by that stuff. Indeed, often a science-forward shoe can end up being over-designed, over-expensive and underperforming. Underperforming when it comes to the actual business of mountain biking. If a flat shoe doesn’t offer traction and plenty of pedal feel, then what’s the point?
These come up a bit on the small size and I’d recommend going up a Euro foot size from your usual shoe size. Once you’ve got a size that suits, they are very comfy. They’re definitely at the stiff and supportive end of the spectrum, but the toe box and the hi-tech insole both combine to offer a nice roomy-enough feel at the forefoot. You don’t feel squeezed in at the sides.
I like laces. I’m not that convinced about Velcro top straps – they just seem to get in the way when tying up the shoe and are uncomfortably hot-spotty if used as a lace tidy. Maybe if you like your shoes done up really tight, the top strap makes sense. As it is, it feels like something better suited to the clipless version of this shoe.
The StickyFOOT rubber used where the shoe meets the pedal offers very good traction. The shock-absorbing midsole works really well for, er… absorbing shocks, funnily enough. The MT500 Burner Flat shoes reminded me of a less Frankenstein-clumpy Five Ten Impact Pro. They’re very grippy and planted, but just a tad on the stiff side to offer maximum pedal feel. The sole also felt a bit on the thick side towards the rear half of the shoe, where the trailing edge of the pedal sits, which was great for fending off shock-fatigue, but did seemingly cost a bit of feel and rear-wheel control/pick-up.
With regard to living with them, they appear to be well made but as they’re a new shoe they haven’t been tested as long as the others in this test. They do a decent job of keeping splashy weather at bay (although doesn’t everyone just wear waterproof socks nowadays if it’s wet out?), and they dry out impressively quickly after wet rides, ready to go again.
|MT500 Burner Flat
|by Benji for 12 months