With the age of aero in full swing, it’s refreshing to see companies keeping their sights on lightness. As a metric of performance, it is the most tangible for the mere mortal. Pick up something and compare it to something else and you can tell, without great difficulty, which weighs less.
The brand new Specialized S-Works Exos shoes are once again pushing the bar upwards, this time with two dedicated climbing shoes. The heaviest comes in at a featherweight 150 grams per shoe and is the lightest production shoe fitted with a Boa dial closure system. Note that Specialized have specified the standard IP1 Boa fitting rather than their fancy anodized cousins used on the S-Works 7 shoe, to save on weight.
This impressive weight is achieved by using Dyneema® Mesh, which claims to be the world’s strongest fibre relative to its weight. This ensures comfort, support and connection to the pedals. It’s paired with Specialized’s Powerline carbon sole, the lightest and stiffest in their range – with titanium bolts throughout. They’re certainly a no-expense-spared pair of kicks: retail price at time of writing is a punchy £450.
Step into true weight-weenie territory though and you have the limited edition S-Works Exos 99 coming in at a measly 99 grams per shoe. Following on from Specialized’s S-Works Sub6 lace-ups, the Exos 99 retains all of the Body-Geometry fit characteristics, lace closure system and the FACT carbon soles but sheds a whopping 95 grams per shoe. Specialized claim this is the hardest project they have ever completed and as a result, will only produce 500 pairs of these, truly exclusive in all considerations – including price at £600.
We got our hands on a pair of S-Works Exos shoes in white for our up-and -coming issue of Rouleur Desire. Look out for the full feature when the magazine lands in retailers in two weeks. For more information on the shoes, head over to www.Specialized.com.