Only just eclipsed as Specialized’s premier road shoe, the S-Works 7 is still mighty impressive. Whereas earlier Specialized shoes had been fairly narrow fitting, the S-Works 7s gain a roomier toebox and more generous Form Fit last to better fit wider feet.
Specialized says the FACT Powerline carbon sole is its stiffest ever, rated 15 on its stiffness index, and includes a toe vent, hardwearing toe section and replaceable heel pad too.
The uppers are constucted with Dyneema Mesh, which is encapsulated within layers of four-way stretch mesh and TPU. Dyneema is a material derived from space exploration and is extremely tough and doesn’t stretch, meaning that the flanks of the shoe create a firm foundation for the twin BOA dials.
As well as the toebox Velcro strap, a pair of BOA S3-Snap closures with custom CNC’d alloy dials look smart, and each lace makes a simple loop across the thickly padded tongue and back. It’s unfussy and very effective at quickly finding a comfortable fit, with 1mm adjustment in either direction.
Body Geometry insoles have a metatarsal button and Varus Wedge, which help to stabilise the foot and improve circulation, and the PadLock heel’s stepped shape and grippy fabric ensure excellent heel retention.
The S-Works 7s are seriously comfortable, able to be as tight as you could wish, to maximise pedalling performance without squeezing the foot and affecting circulation.
That spacious toe box is well perforated, keeping your free range toes from overheating, and my only minor niggle has been an occasional rattle from the BOA dials.
Specialized S-Works 7 specifications
- Outer sole: FACT Powerline carbon
- Closure: BOA S3-Snap
- Weight (pair): 517g
- Size tested: 45
- Sizes available: 36–49
- Price: £340 / $400 / AU$500