The new Fizik Gravita Versor mountain bike shoe launched today and we were lucky enough to get our hands on a pair of the flat and clipped versions for a first ride ahead of the launch.
Let’s start with the basics. Today sees Fi’zi:k launch two new shoes, the Versor and the Tensor, each in their own clip and flat versions. Both come with the ‘Gravita’ forename which is Fizik’s new collection of gravity mountain bike shoes and will, presumably, grow in future to accommodate more models for various price points and riding styles.
The Fizik Gravita Tensor is the higher-end, higher-price version and is aimed at the high-performance racer crowd. You can check out Pete’s first ride review of those here.
The Fizik Gravita Versor is the slightly more down to earth shoe that’s aimed at us everyday trail riders. It’s still packed with decent performance features but is a little more affordable than the higher-spec Tensor. Don’t get your hopes up too much, ‘more affordable’ still comes with a £124.99 price tag for flats and £129.99 for clips.
Light On Your Feet
The first thing that really jumps out with the Versor is Fizik’s mission to make lightweight, minimal shoes. There’s none of the bulky, clumpy, ‘loaf of bread’ effect you’d get elsewhere and they really feel like you’re getting everything you need, without any fat or excess. There’s no big lumps of rubber on the sole or chunky tabs and cuffs. The shoe feels slim, sleek, unobtrusive and exactly the right tool for those big, pedaly trail bike rides in the spring and summer.
The Gravita Versor is built around Fizik’s X6 sole, which has a Vibram tread and impact-absorbing EVA midsole. The tread wraps slightly around the inside edge of the shoe and has a solid outside edge to ward off impacts.
The mid-foot area of the sole is designed with a shallower tread pattern for, Fizik say, ‘an immediate connection and optimal mechanical interface with the pedal pins’ whilst the toe and heel have a sharper and deeper tread to offer more grip when pushing back up the hill.
Fizik rate the stiffness of their soles from 1 to 5, with 5 being the stiffest. The flat pedal Versor is rated as a ‘2’ (for reference, the high-spec clip-in Tensor is rated 5) and is designed to be supple and give a little movement when stamping on your favourite flat pedals.
Rip Stop Up Top
The Versor’s upper (the top half of the shoe!) continues the theme of being lightweight, unobtrusive and very stripped back. The main fabric of the shoe is Ripstop, which treads a fine balance of being light and flexible without feeling flimsy.
There’s also PU-laminated to cap, side reinforcements and heel cap to offer a little extra impact absorption. Style is always subjective but, in my book, they look great. No complaints at all on the style.
Where the posher Tensor shoes use a velcro strap, the Versor is a no-hassle lace-up affair. According to Fizik, the laces are positioned to offer more comfort and a more secure fit than the standard ‘straight line’ you see elsewhere.
On The Trails
Since their arrival, I’ve put around 60km of riding into the flat pedal versions of the Gravita Versor shoes.
Conditions have been kind as the UK has clicked over into Spring and I’ve been able to get some fast, relatively dry laps of our favourite local trails. That’s meant plenty of natural singletrack, lots of ruts and roots, a good mix of up and down and some pleasingly rough trails given the amount of traffic local lockdown has created in our area.
It feels like it can be hard to find a pair of shoes to really fall in love with. Small details can ruin an otherwise great shoe and a slight imperfection with fit can often lead to a complete mismatch with a rider. Fizik are definitely a brand that traditionally divides opinion amongst riders, particularly with fit and particularly amongst those with big, wide feet.
For me personally, I ‘clicked’ perfectly with the Fizik Gravita Versor flat pedal shoes. They felt instantly comfortable and a perfect fit for my modest size 8 feet. Where many of Fizik’s shoes can feel a bit tight around the toes, the Versor just feels ‘right’ with room to flex and move but no excess space or that ‘too big’ feeling.
On the pedals, the Versors feel solid and secure. They’re easy to move around and readjust your foot position and don’t have the super-sticky feel you might get on other brands. No complaints at all with grip.
The minimal feel of the Versor suits me but may not be for everyone. They feel perfect for laps of the local woods and loamy, natural trail rides. They might not quite suite those that prefer a little more protection or are riding more technical, rockier terrain where impacts, scuffs and scrapes are more likely.
I’ve not had a chance to ride them in some high speed, properly rough terrain as yet and I’ve not ridden them in very wet, cold and muddy conditions. I suspect the lightweight, stripped-back nature of the Versor is more suited to warmer, drier conditions.
What Do We Think?
So far, I’ve really enjoyed my time in the Fizik Gravita Versor shoes. They were an instant match with my feet and feel very comfortable, very intuitive to wear and do nothing to alert me to their presence. I suspect that I’d need to pair them with decent waterproof socks or invest in a more substantial shoe for the winter, but for spring, summer and autumn I’ve got high hopes for the new Versor.
Lightweight, low profile design
Plenty of grip but not too much
Could Do Better:
They’re definitely not the cheapest at £124.99
May be uncomfortable in cold and wet conditions
You can check out the Fizik Gravita Tensor shoe on their website here.