Ride Concepts has a new version of their Hellion out today and the ‘Elite’ badge brings some new features to the trusty flat-pedal shoe. The Hellion Elite is a low-top shoe with their DST 4.0 Max Grip rubber sole. The original Hellions utilize 6.0 High Grip rubber.
The DST 4.0 has a “durometer in the 40 range on the Shore A scale – meaning downright tacky and responsive.” Likely the softer rubber means a faster-wearing compound than their other outsoles, though Ride Concepts claims that the rubber will exceed the lifespan of other soles on the market.
Ride Concepts developed a men’s and women’s version of the Hellion Elite and both have gender-specific molds that were used to develop the shoe. The shoe comes in men’s US sizes 7-13 in all colors, with sizes 14 and 15 available for black and charcoal. For women, sizes range from US 5-10.
Like other Ride Concepts shoes, they use D3O impact-absorbing material in the insole to keep riders’ feet feeling floaty amongst choppy trails, or to reduce the shock after throwing a foot down.
The Hellion Elite is made from a two-panel microfiber synthetic upper. It’s abrasion resistant and the interior has an antibacterial mesh lining to reduce stink. The shoe comes with a gusseted tongue and a firm toe cap to defend against rock strikes.
The styling and appearance defines it as a mountain bike shoe, although it’s not terribly exciting. The red lace eyelets on the khaki colored shoe stand out the most.
With tight lacing on the Hellion Elite, the shoes feel very secure and make for a cozy and confident flat pedal option. The sole feels fairly firm for transferring to the next descent and flexible enough for hiking. To keep those laces in line, there’s a little catch on the tongue that will prevent them from moving. The shoes feel breathable enough for a hot day in the bike park.
The DST 4.0 sole is sticky indeed, even when it’s greased up with a little mud and moisture. With the sturdy toe cap, I’d trust the Hellion Elite for proper performance on any ride.