Shimano SH-MP66L Shoes / PD-M647 DX Pedals

written by: J.V. Nixon

Introduction:

If you’re looking for a set of clipless pedals and shoes that are designed to work well together, look no further than the Shimano SH-MP66L shoes and the PD-M647 pedals. These two items are often associated with the Shimano DX lineup that BMX racers use but they’re just as widely used in mountain bike applications. The shoes are very similar to the SH-MP56L flat shoes in design and function but have a stiffer sole and are clipless compatible.

The SH-MP66L Product Features:

  • Rigidity required for BMX, DH, and street cycling.
  • Tall inside height of upper supports ankle and keeps mud, dirt, and water out.
  • SPD cutout to mount clipless cleat.
  • Available in sizes 3.5-12.5 (36 – 48 European) and fit like typical cycling shoes.

Shimano SH-MP66L shoes (click to enlarge)

The PD-M647 Product Features:

  • Designed for the rigors of BMX as well as all off-road racing.
  • Dual-sided pop-up bindings that position the body at 12.5 degrees angle for easy and fast entry.
  • Cleat tension adjustment with indicators for each rider preference.

Shimano PD-M647 (click to enlarge)

Riding Results:

These Shimano shoes fit quite well and they weren’t too tight or too loose. They’ve got some simple styling that I really like as well. The shoe’s overall body is very easy to clean, which is a plus. The inside height on the ankles is higher which helps to protect the inside of the ankle and keep debris out, while providing some really nice stability. These shoes feel and fit very similarly to the MP56L flat pedal shoe version but has a stiffer sole to accompany the SPD compatibility. Putting the power down on these shoes is easy and pretty efficient. It doesn’t feel quite as stiff as a full on XC clipless shoe (SIDI) as they do have some more give to them. Walking around is a bit easier than an XC clipless shoe and offers additional protection that XC shoes don’t offer.

inside profile detail (click to enlarge)

The shoe is designed well to protect against the elements and it sheds mud/water exceptionally well. The shoes also feature a shoe-lace enclosure to help keep your laces out of the drivetrain as well as a means to keep the elements out even more. The shoes also have a rear clasp that helps in putting the shoes on quickly and easily.

lace enclosure detail (click to enlarge)

The clipless pedals are easy to adjust with an allen wrench and it offered predictable engagement every time. The open design of this pedal allows for some stellar mud clearance and shedding that is reminiscent of the new Shimano series pedals (959, 540) but with some additional security of their plastic cage. The pedal naturally angles upward to enable an ideal angle to clip in. The platform is wide enough to ride on should you miss the clip or need to ride on top of the platform in a given section of the trail.

pedal detail (click to enlarge)

The durability of the pedals is quite great. The plastic cage may seem suspect for durability but it’s held its own quite well. Only some small gouges can be seen in the plastic and considering what they’ve gone through, it’s quite great. The pedals can be overhauled easily and the plastic cage can be replaced but it’s a lot more durable than you might think. They have taken many rock hits and keep asking for more. These pedals are built to last and have a dual sided entry for ease of use while keeping the guts protected.

pedal detail (click to enlarge)

Where can the SH-MP66L / PD-M647 improve?

The Shimano SH-MP56L isn’t perfect and I feel it has a few areas where it can be improved upon.

  • The shoe’s lace enclosure is great but is a bit soft and in time your pedals can wear through the soft enclosure.
  • The shoes could use a little bit more protection in the toe area with some denser material to protect against impacts.
  • The sole could stand to be a bit stiffer to help transfer even more power down as well as some additional mud clearance on each side of the cleat area.
  • The PD-M647 could stand to lose a little bit of weight. It rings in at 572g and it’d be nice if they had an option that was lighter.
  • On the left pedal, the plastic cover on the outside spring did crack between the end of the pedal and the main pedal but hasn’t affected any functioning mechanically.

Pricing:

  • SH-MP66L – $85.00 MSRP
  • PD-M647 – $119.00 MSRP

Conclusion:

Shimano SH-MP66L shoes (click to enlarge)

The Shimano SH-MP66L shoes have some great ergonomics to them and fit my feet quite well. Combined with the PD-M647 pedals it is a great setup that has worked superbly. The cleats are made out of steel and typically last 6-12months which is great. The pedals can take a beating and still spin just as smooth as the first day they were opened. Everything about the setup is quite durable and if you’re looking for a solid clipless system that won’t leave you hanging, you can’t miss with either of these two pieces.

Shimano PD-M647 pedals (click to enlarge)

Check the gallery for more pictures of the shoes and pedals.

[Shimano SH-MP66L Shoes Gallery] [Shimano PD-647 Pedals Gallery]

[Shimano Website] [Purchase Online]
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