Specialized Torch 1.0 cycling shoes review

Excellent shoes for the price - though not quite the best

Specialized Torch 1.0 cycling shoes
Cycling Weekly Verdict

Specialized is able to offer trickle-down technology within its Torch 1.0 shoes with many learnings from the market-leading S-Works 7 kicks clearly present. The fit is good, at this price point, and the sole was plenty stiff enough. The heel hold isn't quite as good as I'd like, and I found that swapping in an upgrade insole allowed the shoe to really shine. Whilst I won't mark the shoes down for the lack of internal support, since no other shoes on test at this price point offer anything better, I do think most riders will get more out of these shoes if they buy them alongside a BG fit insole or similar add-on.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Sole is stiff enough

  • +

    Sleek aesthetic

  • +

    Boa dial closure

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Heel support lacking

You can trust Cycling Weekly. Our team of experts put in hard miles testing cycling tech and will always share honest, unbiased advice to help you choose. Find out more about how we test.

Specialized is a real market leader when it comes to cycling shoes, the American brand is best known for its S-Works 7 shoes, but these retail at a rather jaw-dropping £370. In the Torch 1.0, the purveyors of the big red 'S' branded clothing and bikes aim to bring the basics of the Specialized shoe offering at a much more reasonable price tag: £99.

The Torch 1.0 benefits from trickle-down technology, including learnings from the Body Geometry sector of the company which uses data and research on the human body and how it interacts with the bike. However, the sole is not as stiff and a couple of corners have been cut along the way to bring the price down.

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Michelle Arthurs-Brennan