ROAD.CC9 OUT OF 10
Giro made quite an impact and raised a good few eyebrows when they launched the first generation Empire shoes several years ago, successfully reintroducing lace-up shoes to a sport that had largely confined laces to the history books, replaced by buckles, ratchets and dials.
These latest Empire SLX shoes are constructed with a one-piece Teijin Evofibre SL microfibre upper with a breathable mesh liner bonded to the inside. This, along with loads of perforations, ensures they keep your feet as cool as possible when riding in the heat.
The Microfiber Sport laces are designed to remain tied, hold a knot, be light and durable. The best thing about the laces is that you can get the closure pressure across the entire top of the foot just right, with no pressure points that you might get with a shoe that uses two or three focused closure points. Once tied, the laces are contained underneath a 'lace garage' on top of the shoe.