Specialized reveal mid-range Torch shoes, available from £80 to £200
All-new Torch 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0 shoes sit below the top-end S-Works 6 and Sub 6 models
We’ve been impressed with Specialized’s road shoes in recent years, not least the flagship S-Works 6 featured in the 2016 RCUK 100, and now the American firm has announced a new mid-range line-up of footwear.
The S-Works 6 (£310) and Sub 6 (£275) shoes remain at the top of the Specialized range, but the new Torch 1, 2 and 3 models replace come in below, priced at £200, £150 and £80 respectively.
All three will be available from August 14 but Specialized has sent us some initial information on the range, so let’s take a closer look.
Specialized Torch 3.0 road shoes – £200
The £200 3.0 shoes are the most expensive of the new Torch models. “From the outset of the Torch 3.0 Road shoe design process, our goal was to create a performance offering as feature-packed as any top-end shoe,” according to Specialized. “The challenge, however, was pulling this off at a palatable price.”
The Torch 3.0 shoes are built around a carbon composite sole with a rating of 8.5 on Specialized’s ‘stiffness index’, which tops out at 13. You’re unlikely to feel the sole flexing beneath you, though, given Specialized’s performance goals for this shoe.
The Body Geometry sole and footbed are ‘ergonomically designed and scientifically tested to boost power, increase efficiency, and reduce chance of injury by optimising hip, knee and foot alignment,’ according to Specialized.
As for the upper, that’s made from mesh, TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) and a synthetic layer, each placed in specific areas to provide comfort, while the materials are thermobonded, which apparently helps provide a better fit. Closure comes via two Boa dials and a velcro strap.
Otherwise, the shoes support a three-bolt cleat and come in at 248g each (for a size 42), so they compare favourably to the 242g S-Works 6.
You’ll have the option of black and lime colours, in sizes 39 to 49 (with half-sizes from 40 to 46). There’s also a women’s version, available in white and sizes 36 to 42.
Specialized Torch 2.0 road shoes – £150
“The Torch 2.0 Road shoes are all about comfort – well, comfort and performance that is,” according to Specialized. “Due to the materials, road shoes often feel stiff and uncomfortable. We decided to address this annoyance head on, though.”
To counter this, the Torch 2.0’s upper has a 100 per cent mesh and TPU construction, said to allow for more ‘wiggle room’ in the toe box and a ‘less constrictive, sock-like feel’. That upper is combined with a ‘medium-stiffness’ carbon sole, ranked seven on Specialized’s own stiffness index, and rubber toe and heel caps to offer some off-the-bike traction.
You get a single Boa dial and velcro strap for closure, while the shoes come in black, white and red colours. Claimed weight is 235g per size 42 shoe (available in the same range of sizes as the Torch 3.0), so the 2.0 is actually lighter than the more expensive 3.0.
As for the women’s version, you’ll find white and black/mint colour options, with sizes 46 to 42 (half-sizes from 38 to 43).
Specialized Torch 1.0 road shoes – £80
The £80 Torch 1.0 shoes open the range and use a nylon composite sole with a stiffness ranking of six, designed to be ‘moderately stiff and plenty light’, while the the synthetic upper is supplemented by mesh vents.
Three velcro straps provide closure and you’ll find reflective detailing on the heel to increase visibility in low-light conditions. That gives an indication of who these shoes are aimed at but it’s a subtle touch which wouldn’t look out of place on Specialized’s more expensive footwear.
The 1.0 will accept both three-bolt and two-bolt cleats, so it’s compatible with most road and mountain bike pedals. Claimed weight is 292g per shoe for a size 42, with sizes ranging from 39 to 49 (no half-sizes). The women’s model comes in white or black, and sizes 36 to 42.
Take a closer look at the whole range in the photo gallery below.
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