Sidi Zero Gore 2 shoe review
A boot designed for the depths of winterGBP £255.00 RRP | EUR €259.00 | AUD $409.40 Skip to view deals
Reminiscent of viking boots, the Zero Gore 2 is Sidi’s winter road cycling shoe.
It features a Gore-Tex membrane to repel water, while it’s claimed to offer good breathability – everything you should need in a winter boot.
And the result? These winter road cycling shoes have really impressed with their comfort, especially over longer winter rides. However, the design isn’t perfect and I found the fit to have some quirks.
Sidi Zero Gore 2 shoe construction
The Zero Gore 2 is aesthetically in keeping with other shoes in Sidi’s range, with some well thought-out features.
The Gore-Tex membrane is paired with a ‘Microfibre Microtech’ upper, which Sidi says is a light, breathable, water-resistant and environmentally friendly material.
The inside of the shoe is fleece-lined for insulation and the tongue goes over the seam to protect your feet from the wind.
Sidi uses its ‘Millenium 5’ sole, which it says is carbon-injected into a nylon matrix. That means the sole is predominantly nylon, infused with carbon.
The brand claims it’s stiff enough to offer optimum power transfer and features mountings for three-bolt road cleats.
Some may be disappointed that the cleat holes are fixed and positioned relatively centrally. There isn’t a lot of room for adjustment forward and back, which might impact those with specific cleat-positioning requirements.
It wasn’t an issue for me personally. I suspect Sidi has opted for this design to improve underfoot sealing and prevent any unnecessary water or cold finding its way to your feet.
There’s a reinforced heel cup, which Sidi says helps increase power transfer and reduce slippage.
Two Velcro straps and Sidi’s proprietary Tecno 3 dial close the shoe. One of the Velcro straps is at the shoe’s base, with the Tecno 3 dial sitting above it. At the top of the shoe is a more substantial strap integrated into a neoprene cover.
The Tecno 3 dial is intuitive to use. You simply lift the lever of the dial up and twist it to tighten the shoe. To release it, you press on the two spring-loaded release buttons while twisting the dial in the opposite direction.
The dial is also serviceable (for example, in case you kink the cable) and replaceable.
From experience, the Tecno 3 dials can be susceptible to jamming when dirt and debris work their way into them, particularly in mucky conditions. It’s a good idea to keep them clean.
They’re also not easy to adjust when wearing thick winter gloves.
The external heel pads are replaceable and Sidi says it has tweaked the design to make the shoe easier to walk in, as well as reduce weight.
There’s also reflective detailing at the back of the shoe.
The Zero Gore 2s come in a single and subdued ‘monochrome black’ colour and are offered from sizes 39 to 50. I tested a size 45 and weighed it at 844g for the pair.
Sidi Zero Gore 2 shoe sizing and fit
My feet are reasonably wide with a narrow heel, and I tend to take a size EU45 in most brands.
Historically, I’ve worn an EU46 for Sidi shoes, but the brand has slowly relaxed its sizing on its last couple of generations of shoes. I found the 45s fitted fine here.
Sidi doesn’t offer the Zero Gore 2 in half sizes, nor in its ‘Mega’ variant for those with extra-wide feet.
Despite this, the fit of the shoe is not without its foibles.
Whenever I put the shoe on and cinched down the dial and straps as tight as desired, I could see an opening at the top of the shoe when riding. On some rides, I stopped to try to further adjust the shoe, but could still not fully get rid of the opening.
I also experienced some heel slippage.
The Zero Gore 2 lacks the ‘Adjustable Heel Retention Device’ found on some of its other shoes, which (for me, at least) has solved any problems in this area in the past.
It could have been a great addition here, bearing in mind my relatively narrow heels.
As with all cycling shoes, optimum sizing and fit will come down to the shape of your feet and personal preference – it’s entirely possible a particular brand just isn’t suited to you.
It’s always worth trying shoes on for size before you commit to purchasing.
Sidi Zero Gore 2 performance
I tested the Sidi Zero Gore 2 in a variety of conditions, using Shimano SPD-SL pedals. Temperatures ranged from as low as -3°C in the ice to an unseasonably mild 13°C.
Fitting quirks aside, the Zero Gore 2 was ultimately a very solid performer.
The shoes didn’t take long to break in and after a couple of niggles on the first ride (akin to those many have with new shoes), comfort has been exemplary ever since.
My longest ride in testing was 100 miles and although other parts of my body ached towards the end, the shoes were faultless and my feet comfortable.
I detected some flex in the carbon-injected sole on more powerful efforts, but it didn’t spoil the ride experience.
I found the shoes to be quite warm. They kept my feet toasty to -1°C. On a ride where ambient temperatures touched the low teens, I paired them with summer-thin cycling socks and remained warm without overheating.
Water protection is reasonable, but could be better.
There’s no shortage of puddles of standing water in a British winter and when negotiating them, water crept in through the top of the shoe. This is likely down to the low ankle height, and I’d like to see a higher opening for the shoe.
Compared to the Fizik Artica GTX Tempo, which Warren Rossiter criticised for its low ankle cut, the shoe comes up higher. However, other winter-specific cycling shoes are higher still.
Although the Zero Gore 2s are expensive, the price is in line with the Artica GTX Tempo at £250. The fact some of the parts are replaceable somewhat justifies the additional expense, theoretically improving the shoe’s lifespan.
Sidi Zero Gore 2 bottom line
The Sidi Zero Gore 2 is a very comfortable shoe for winter riding. It’s mostly well-built and kept my feet warm and dry.
However, the low ankle height is a mis-step and I’d like to see Sidi work on how the shoe closes to ensure a more snug fit, which could help with keeping water out.
In addition, the lack of an ankle retention device, plus the reduced cleat positioning flexibility, may mean the Zero Gore 2 isn’t suitable for some individuals.
That said, it’s important to caveat that cycling shoes are an incredibly personal choice and what works for one person may not work for another.
In my experience, its comfort over long distances makes the Sidi Zero Gore 2 a better-than-average winter boot, despite some quirks.