I’ve been riding with SPD cleats for 10 years.
In fact, I can’t imagine not riding with cleats nowadays despite a few false starts when I arrived at a junction and toppled over trying to disengage.
Being a road trundler rather than a road racer, I’ve eschewed the road orientated SPD cleats in favour of the smaller MTB units. They hold my feet in the optimal pedalling position, while providing enough float, and the shoes are fine to walk in – useful when on a camping tour.
I’ve destroyed two pairs of the Shimano shoes, both lasting me about three years of tough daily commuting, training and touring. I bought them because they were good value.
The main drawback of these shoes was the lacing, though, which had a tendency to come undone and be shredded by the chainwheel. They were a bit tight, too, and required a lengthy breaking-in period.
Enter the M063, then, which is still excellent value for money (normally £60, Edinburgh Cycle Co-op doing them for £47.99 at the moment) but secured by two hefty Velcro-style straps rather than laces.
The upper is a mixture of mesh and synthetic leather material, which is quite supple where not reinforced. Inside, there’s a breathable mesh lining and a padded footbed. The mesh will no doubt be a welcome feature on hot days, but these shoes do run cold in winter. Overshoes are essential.
While the midsole is fibreglass and very rigid, the rubber outsoles are more pliable than a dedicated road shoe, but seemingly stiffer than other MTB shoes I’ve manhandled in the past. The shoes are equipped with the standard SPD MTB channels while a deep recess in the outsole keeps your cleats off the street.
A size 11 (46) fits me well, largely due to the main advantage of this shoe – its width.
The toe box is larger on the M063 than other Shimano shoes I’ve tried, which improves comfort considerably. The shoe feels secure and positive when clipped in, yet the blood supply is not cut off to my toes. Although the longest ride in them so far has been two hours, I think the wee bit extra room will be a boon for those really long days in the saddle.
Worth a look, then, particularly for the podiatrically challenged.