Ignoring that for now, the shoe is really light, and feels thus on the foot. The sole is also a great compromise between stiffness and feel, with a cleat channel that extends really far back for excellent control on technical terrain.
There’s not masses of off-the-bike grip, but enough that you’re not skating around like Bambi, and should you miss engaging with the pedal, you’ll get away with sticking your foot on top.
The cleat is well positioned and offers great controlWhat Mountain Bike
I found the upper around the ankle a little stiff, especially to start, and I’d like a bit more ankle protection too. As such, I found it rubbed a bit, but eventually started to soften up. The insole uses Specialized’s Body Geometry shaping, which I found to be very comfortable all day.
The laces are controversial though, especially with winter testing. Getting the shoe open enough to slip my feet in means a lot of threading laces through holes, and to get it tight enough over the top of the foot for effective pedalling is a bit of a hassle. They also get caked in mud because there’s no mud flap to protect them.