Shimano updates RC7 and RC5 road shoes

Plus there's a new shoe for the track riders and some limited edition gravel kicks, too.

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While many of Shimano’s components get overhauled every 3-6 years, its shoe range sees updates and new releases on a far more frequent basis. And the latest update sees the introduction of a sprint-specific version of the top-tier RC9, a trickle-down of performance tech to the RC7 and RC5 road shoes, and some new limited colourways of existing models. 

The S-Phyre RC902T, a track and sprint focussed offering

Now in its third generation, the S-Phyre RC9 has stood as Shimano’s top-tier road racing shoe for a number of years, and while that shoe remains, it is now accompanied by a new track and sprint version – the RC902T.

The RC902T (US$430 / AU$549) remains extremely similar to the regular RC902 and quite simply replaces the second (lower) Boa Li2 dial with a single velcro strap in order to gain compatibility with toe straps for track racing. The velcro strap also saves approximately 5 grams per shoe. This new model is only available in white and in a standard fit. 

It’s worth noting that a similar version of this shoe was available with the RC901 and I’m told some road sprinters preferred the fit offered by the lower velcro strap. 

Shimano has also announced a limited edition “Dura-Ace” colourway of the regular S-Phyre RC9 (RC902). Designed to match the new groupsets, these shoes feature an enamelled black upper, a gloss black heel cup, and pearl-coloured Boa Li2 dials. These shoes will be available in limited quantities and sizes ranging from EU42-48 in standard and E-widths (wide) fits. They’re priced at US$430 / AU$549. 

The new RC702 

Sitting in the line-up as Shimano’s second-tier road race shoe, the RC7 has been overhauled with what’s said to more closely mimic the RC9 that sits above it. Compared to the previous RC701, the new RC702 features a new upper with breathable mesh panels now placed within the synthetic upper. That upper now wraps around the foot in a similar way to the S-Phyre RC9, and it’s also now seamlessly integrated with the carbon midsole. The seamless integration of the upper and midsole has resulted in a stack height reduction from a claimed 8.8 mm to 5.5 mm.

The more affordable RC7 gets a welcomed overhaul. Previously this second-tier shoe was more like a 105-level offering, so hopefully, these updates help raise the bar.

The RC7 features the same Boa L6 dials as before (RC902 has Boa Li2 dials), a carbon sole with a 10/12 stiffness rating (RC902 is 12/12), and unlike the RC902, there is no antimicrobial odour control on the innersole. At a claimed 510 g for a pair (EU42), it appears to have gained approximately 20 g compared to the previous version.

Depending on your location the new RC7 is available in a few different colours but most markets will offer the standard white that fades to black. These shoes are produced in standard fit sizes of EU38-50 and E-widths of EU40-48, as well as some half-size options – check with your local seller for sizing offered in your region. Expect to pay US$240 / AU$299 for these. 

RC5 and RC5W (women’s) are new, too 

Priced at US$170 / AU$239, the new RC5 and RC5W (Women’s) receive more subtle updates compared to the wholly overhauled RC7. Here the entry-level road racing shoe gains a new synthetic leather upper and a carbon-fibre reinforced nylon midsole. The new RC5 continues to feature a single Boa L6 dial accompanied by a velcro strap over the ball of the foot, while the sole stiffness remains unchanged at a claimed 8/12. Also unchanged is the stack height at a claimed 6.5 mm. The new RC5 (and RC5W) have dropped approximately 18 g for a size EU42.

The women’s version offers the same features but with a narrower-fitting last and different colour options. 

New look RX8 

The Shimano RX8 gravel race shoe has gained a couple of new colourways to help you camouflage yourself in with the surrounding terrain. 

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