First released in 2020 to replace the M530, the non-series ME700 trail pedals from Shimano build on their tried and tested SPD mountain bike pedal.
The ME700 pedals have an alloy platform fore and aft to give more foot support, as well as helping to protect the cleat binding mechanism.
Shimano PD-ME700 specifications and details
For riders looking for a bit more support than the smaller clipless mountain bike pedals such as the M540, the ME700 has been developed to be more similar to a flat pedal, while still retaining the double-sided binding mechanism.
The alloy pedal cage adds a little weight (130g extra compared to the platform-less M540), giving a total system weight of 533g, fitted around the chromoly spindle and serviceable sealed bearing cartridge axle.
Compatible with standard Shimano cleats offered in single- or multi-release, the ME700 pedals can also be adjusted to your preferred entry and release tension at the turn of an Allen key.
Shimano PD-ME700 performance
Easy to set up, adjust the entry and release tension and service, the ME700 pedals live up to the quality and serviceability you’d expect from Shimano.
Simply use an Allen key to adjust the entry and release tension on either side of the mechanism, with a graphic to demonstrate tightening or loosening. There’s a good range of adjustment here too, from barely being able to keep clipped in to a really firm, stable connection, so there’ll be a setting to suit all preferences.
The SM-SH51 single-release cleats supplied are also quickly installed and very durable. Widely available, they won’t cost you the earth when it comes to replacing them either.
Four degrees of float felt ample to be comfortable, or at least not noticeably restrictive.
While the ME700s were designed to improve shoe-to-pedal contact around the platform compared to their earlier M530 counterparts, I didn’t feel this was quite enough.
I felt some improvement on using the platform for security on the pedals over rougher singletrack on a mountain bike compared to platform-less SPD pedals, but I would prefer a more marked difference, especially given the weight increase of adding the cage.
Perhaps use with Shimano’s AM-series mountain bike shoes, which the pedals were developed in tandem with, would give a more significant improvement.
From the condition of the pedals after a few months of use, it’s evident that the platform has indeed saved the pedal mechanism from a few scrapes, though because the pedal is considerably wider you could argue that some of these might not have occurred when using more streamlined SPDs.
There’s a minimal amount of play through the spindle too, and while you will need the Shimano pedal axle tool, the pedals are otherwise simple to service, so they should last a long time.
Shimano PD-ME700 bottom line
Shimano’s ME700 pedals are best for riders who are looking for a little more support than standard SPD pedals, or perhaps are new to clipless systems. However, they could be further improved with even greater platform-to-shoe contact.
They’re also a great value option that’s built to last.
How we tested
Gravel fire roads, dusty singletrack, back lanes and rocky bridleways; the best gravel bike pedals need to be able to cope with a wide variety of terrain. Therefore, we tested the pedals in a range of scenarios representative of off-road riding in the UK.
We specifically paid close attention to the ease of clipping in and out, how secure the mechanism felt and the level of support offered by the platform, as well as how serviceable each set would be.
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|Price||br_price, 5, 3, Price, EUR €65.00GBP £55.00USD $66.00|
|Weight||br_weight, 5, 6, Weight, 480g – (540g claimed, including cleats); cleats 53g, Array, g|
|Brand||br_brand, 5, 10, Brand, Shimano|
|Features||br_Features, 11, 0, Features, Cleat: SPD cleat (SM-SH51 single release included), 4 degrees of float; SPD multi release cleats also available
|Cleat type||br_cleatTypepedalSystem, 11, 0, Cleat type, SPD|