Shimano has just released an improved model of their M300 mountain bike shoe, which is now called the M310. For those of who haven’t seen or considered these shoes, you may very well be impressed. With an updated moldable upper, an improved carbon fiber midsole, and two colors to choose from (basic black or bling bling silver with red highlights), the M310s are a solid choice for the trail.
If you’re looking for comfort, light weight, and performance in a MTB shoe, listen up. The Shimano M310s are labeled as elite competition shoes and that’s because they are some of the most comfortable, precise shoes you can purchase. Don’t let the pro-level designation scare you off – even regular Joes deserve a great pair of MTB shoes!
A bit about the M310s from the Shimano website:
- Moldable upper forms to foot for a precise custom fit
- Modable insole forms to foot for a precise fit with anti-bacterium treatment
- Full-length stiff carbon fiber mid-sole with dual injection polyamide-polyurethane outer transfers your energy straight to the pedals, and allows compliance and grip for hike sections
- Composite toe spikes increases traction in sand or loose dirt
- Asymmetric buckle & dual off-set straps securely holds foot and allows subtle adjustments. Off-set straps prevent pressure points
- Durable synthetic leather upper provides foot protection and excellent durability
- Anti-slip heel lining knitted with metal fiber prevents heel lift
- Available in E-width for wide feet
After purchasing the M310s from my LBS (Cyclepath North York), I made an appointment at Sporting Life where they have Shimano-specific equipment to heat-mold the shoes. With the help of the store manager Keith, the shoes were ready to go in less than an hour. One word of advice: due to the fact that these shoes work best after a custom fitting, I strongly recommend getting these shoes at a retailer that has the equipment on site. Not all shops carry the equipment and some will charge for this feature if you have not purchased the shoes from them so if you purchase these shoes online, expect to pay up to $50.00 for the service (which takes a good three quarters of an hour – make an appointment).
I HIGHLY recommend having these shoes molded to your foot – it makes a night and day difference and is well worth the cash. Hitting the trails with the M310s I noticed right away that my feet didn’t move in the shoes and there were no pressure points anywhere on my foot. With the new shoes my pedaling felt more efficient since my foot wasn’t moving around inside the shoe at all. I did, however, have to increase my pedals spring tension because I noticed my foot started sliding around the pedal a bit more. Going for a few long rides I expected the shoe to stretch out or change how it felt but that didn’t seem to happen – the fit was constant after hours of riding. The soles on the M310s are pretty basic and provide just moderate traction on the dirt. If you need something with a bit more bite you may want to look elsewhere – consider the Shimano M230 which is partially moldable but has more of a tread pattern.
Overall these shoes are super comfortable, fit great, and are light and breathable. The downside is the M310s are a bit overpriced and you have to lay out additional cash to get the MTB shoe fit just right. I’ll also be keeping my eye on the minimal rear sole tread which may need replacing in the near future (I’ll keep you posted).