Leatt 3.0 Flat Pedal Shoes Protect Feet and Provide Decent Grip [Review]

The Leatt 3.0 flat pedal mountain bike shoes for women feature high-quality materials and construction with decent pedal grip in wet conditions.
Photos: Emma Whittaker.

The Leat 3.0 Flat Shoe is a fairly new addition to the brand’s mountain bike clothing line-up and is aimed at the gravity end of the riding spectrum, i.e. enduro and downhill. The 3.0 shoe tested is women’s specific, though it only differs in terms of size and color choices from the men’s version. I opted for a US size 7.5, and the shoes run from 6 – 9.5 for women and 6-12 for men, retailing for $110.

The shoe features a waffle tread pattern that uses their RideGrip compound, which Leatt claims is particularly grippy. With a medium-stiff sole, a synthetic leather upper, and a synthetic suede toe box, the shoe looks well made with detailed stitching in the synthetic leather. Indeed, they feel substantial and solid like they should hold up to some severe abuse. The shoe has a slightly wider profile than equivalent shoes like the Five Ten Freerider Pro or Bontrager Flatline, making them a little bit more comfortable for a person with slightly wider feet.

The addition of ankle protection on the inside of each shoe and the compression laces make for a safer and more comfortable ride. The Leatt MTB 3.0 shoes weigh 890g in my size, which is on the heavier side compared to other brands. However, that weight is not super noticeable when riding or walking.

Given the medium-stiff sole, the 3.0 Flat probably wouldn’t be my recommendation for a hike or a long walk as the lack of flex off the bike is noticeable. However, it is not in any way uncomfortable for a short walk to the pub after a ride, and the shoes do look inconspicuous enough to let you look like a normal person. The stiff sole is a benefit on the bike though, making it feel comfortable and planted during the ride.

Let’s get to the central question regarding the shoe. How does it grip? How does its sole compare to the Five Ten compound? Well, after quite a few rides, it feels fairly close. However, I think Five Ten shoes like the Freeride Pro’s provide better grip overall. That said, the Leatt shoe’s waffle pattern did keep me grounded on the pedals without any slippage in wet conditions, and the compound seems to be soft enough to help your feet stay glued without compromising the construction of the shoe. I cannot tell you how that compound will hold up in the longer term, but so far the underside looks fairly pristine. 

Leatt claims that the shoes are made out of a moisture-wicking, quick-dry, anti-bacterial, and anti-odor material. Either this is correct, or my feet don’t sweat, though I have only tested these in cold temperatures so far. Considering the weather outside at the moment, Leatt’s 3.0 Flat Shoe was reasonably good at keeping my feet dry on some very sloppy wet rides, thanks to the synthetic outer shell and waterproof membrane on the inside. 

I am quite fond of the women’s color options, with the small fern graphic at the side of the sole. If you are looking for clipless shoes, Leatt also offers the 5.0 Clip, though obviously this review focuses on the flat shoe model solely. Pun intended!

The shoe sole

Priced at $110USD (available at Amazon; men’s version at Backcountry), the Leatt 3.0 Flat shoes are in line with the leading competitors. They are packed with clever features, and are very comfortable. If the absolute pedal grip isn’t your concern, and you like adjusting your feet on the bike, these could be an excellent alternative to the leading players’ offerings.