Pearl Izumi Vortex MTB Shoes

3.05/5 (20 Reviews)
MSRP : $120.00


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Product Description

Pearl Izumi Vortex MTN Shoe. Designed for aggressive Off-Road Riding. ^Nylon I-Beam design for light weight and stiffness ^ Aggressive tread with tacky gripping surface for incredible traction and durability in wet and dry conditions. ^ Ratchet cl


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Reviews 1 - 15 (20 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by bandit350 a Cross Country Rider from asheville, nc

Date Reviewed: February 19, 2009

Strengths:    solid, simple shoe

Weaknesses:    tend to stretch during the ride so they need to be tightened after a mile.

Bottom Line:   
good, simple shoe. good size toe box compared to similar shoes. i am not a racer and don't want racer shoes. i had to dremel part of the tread to work w/ my time z pedals and still love them. no issues. i'd probably prefer 3 velcro straps instead of 2 and the ratchet (seems like everyone thinks that is a value added item).

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Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $50.00

Purchased At:   ebay

Similar Products Used:   661, diadora, shimano shoes

Bike Setup:   yeti 575, just sold a coilar

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:2
Submitted by Shamus Yandle a Weekend Warrior from Roswell, GA

Date Reviewed: November 11, 2005

Strengths:    Take them back to a Pearl Izumi Outlet Store if you had any problems with them!!

Weaknesses:    The sole sucks!

Bottom Line:   
This is a follow up of my post below. If you had problems with the soles on these shoes, take them back to a Pearl Izumi Outlet Store. I had these shoes for 2.5 years and the sole on one the shoes was pretty much dettached. I just rode with it like that (DON'T ASK). I mean I wore the heck out of these shoes. On a trip up to the mountains which drives right past an Outlet Store. I stopped in and showed them the shoes. And they gave me a brand new pair of the Vortex equivalent. The Vortex shoes sucks!!!! But I was really impressed with Pearl Izumi sticking behind these products. Thumbs down to the older Vortex shoes, but two thumbs up to Pearl Izumi!!! The new shoes don't have the problems with the soles. Giving 2 flamin chilis for value but 5 flamin chilies for Pearl Izumi backing their products!

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Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $90.00

Purchased At:   Pearl Izumi Outlet store

Similar Products Used:   None

Bike Setup:   Ellsworth Isis, Manitou Minute 2 fork, Avid mechanical disk brakes, XT and XTR components.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Ari a Weekend Warrior from Denver, Colorado, USA

Date Reviewed: June 27, 2005

Strengths:    Excellent shoe. Lightweight, yet stiff, and breathable.

Weaknesses:    As happened with many other reviewers, the sole came apart from the shoe.

Bottom Line:   
I really liked this shoe, but for the sole separating from the shoe itself. However, after seeing other reviewers note the same problem, I contacted Pearl Izumi, and they gave me full warranty. I just returned the shoes to a dealer and swapped them out, even up, for a new, 2005 PI Vortex II. Have only ridden with them once, and not sure I like the one velcro strap and ratchet system better than the old three velcro straps system. Seems that the older version fit snugger. BUT, kudos to Pearl Izumi for acknowleding the defect and agreeing to replace with new version at no cost, with no questions asked. I will be a PI customer for life. Will post review on the new model after use for a while.

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Favorite Trail:   Enchanted Forest

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $90.00

Purchased At:   Wheat Ridge Cyclery

Bike Setup:   Gary Fischer Sugar 3+ stock

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Lewi a Racer from Vic, Aus

Date Reviewed: May 15, 2005

Strengths:    Comfortable, Lightweight

Bottom Line:   
An awesome shoe, not one thing bad about it, superb quality and amazing comfort

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Favorite Trail:   lysterfield

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Similar Products Used:   Axiom cheapo shoe

Bike Setup:   xtc 1, full x.o and juicys

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Calvin a Cross Country Rider from Nor Cal

Date Reviewed: November 28, 2004

Strengths:    Shoes fit wide feet with such comfort unmatched from other brands. comfortable, ratcheting system tigtens nicely. good traction. Good looking all black shoe.

Weaknesses:    The rubber lugs on the bottom were supposedly designed for any kinds of cleats, but I had to cut it for put frog cleats on. One spike came off as I was trying to hike up a bike during a race

Bottom Line:   
Great, awesome shoes that I would deifinitely buy another pair. And the price of theses shoes are half the cost of sidi's new, so I can buy 2 pairs of these, and no problems with shoe falling apart nor sole or lugs coming off.

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Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $30.00

Purchased At:   ebay

Similar Products Used:   I tried Sidi Dominator Megas 4's they were okay, but I didn't think they fit quite as well.

Bike Setup:   Giant NRS

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Chris from St. Louis, MO, USA

Date Reviewed: August 11, 2004

Strengths:    Great shoes. Cool design. Comfortable. Very light.

Weaknesses:    None that I know.

Bottom Line:   
These shoes are great. They are made of very flexible material, so they actually fit my wide feet. Very light, very cool, very comfortable. They clip in great and have good traction in dirt. What more could you ask for?

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Favorite Trail:   Lost Valley

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $30.00

Purchased At:   EBay

Similar Products Used:   Shimano M038

Bike Setup:   04 Specialized Rockhopper with SPDs.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Chad A a Cross Country Rider from Grand Rapids, MI USA

Date Reviewed: May 11, 2004

Strengths:    Brand new design from last year, all black is cool. Affordability, ratchet system, good fit, VERY comfortable, great venting system. Also the best value in this price range. Nice stiff sole, race quality stiffness really.

Weaknesses:    Only weakness is that one cleat plate broke when installing the cleat screws. My LBS promptly replaced this and I was on my way in less than 5 minutes. Thanks!

Bottom Line:   
This review is for the new 2004 model shoe. The color is now all black and they have 2 velcro straps and most importantly a ratchet at the top. This is what really holds the heel in and makes a shoe fit in my opinion. They are the most comforatble shoes I have ever owned, period. I looked for a long time for a replacement for my Nikes which I paid $250 for 4 years ago. Nothing comes close in this pricerange, nothing else has the ratchet or stiff sole that these do. I race and am more than happy in my shoes. I did have to trim the sole on the shoes, but this was pretty easy. The rubber is actually pretty hard this year and the soles seem very well attatched. I have 300 miles in them with no complaints at all so far. In fact my feet are better off now than with more expensive shoes. Probably best for the high performance rider/racer on a budget. Also good for beginner/intermediate riders as a first shoe, might as well get something stiff to work into.

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Favorite Trail:   Goat Trail, MQT MI

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $109.00

Purchased At:   Kentwood Schwinn

Similar Products Used:   Nike Carinis, Nashbar cheapies

Bike Setup:   2004 Kona Unit ss, 2003 Litespeed Vela, 2002 Redline Monocog ss, 2001 Trek 8000...all with Shimano 515's

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:4
Submitted by michael hsu from austin

Date Reviewed: January 29, 2004

Strengths:    Great customer service

Bottom Line:   
This is a follow up to my post directly below. Pearl Izumi returned my call and told me to take it to any PI dealer since they have a lifetime warranty....a week later I have a new pair of the improved Vortex shoes. So the story goes....defective product, they fix the design/assembly, and they give me a new pair...all customer relationships should be this positive.
Thanks PI. My new ratings are based on the shoe staying in one piece.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months


Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by michael hsu a Cross Country Rider from austin

Date Reviewed: January 18, 2004

Strengths:    Wide footbed last. I bought these as a less expensive option to Sidi Mega D 4s or the Carnacs they replaced...oops. Nice stiff platform.

Weaknesses:    Decent fit, but the shoe didn't hold my heel as well as other shoes have in the past making walking sections a bit more difficult. Sole delaminated at the heel on one shoe after not much use, maybe 30 rides.

Bottom Line:   
Bad assembly. Everyone knows that this is where MTB shoes come apart....you'd think that they could've gotten it right. Others and newer models seem to be improved...I seem to have been a beta tester for a new product. Really dissappointed in PI, typically good stuff.

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Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $100.00

Similar Products Used:   various Sidi's, Shimano shoes, Answer shoes, Carnac shoes

Bike Setup:   Spyder, Fox 80 with tires and a handlebar...just about everything you need to go ridin'

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Nic lanzarone a Weekend Warrior from Sydney, Australia

Date Reviewed: November 15, 2003

Strengths:    Super comfortable, no pressure points from this shoe

Weaknesses:    Judging from the no. of reviewers with sole peel off problems I'd say you could get stuck with a bad production batch!

Bottom Line:   
At this stage I am really happy with the shoes performance. I have used them regulary and am very hard on them.
Very stiff sole, nice and light for long rides. great comfort. look good, great tread, removable studs up front, shed water well thro well placed mesh panels.

I probably would not have bought this shoe had I read the reviews below. But I have to say that SO FAR I am wrapped.

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Favorite Trail:   the dam

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $100.00

Similar Products Used:   shimano mtb shoes

Bike Setup:   Santa Cruz heckler

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Shamus Yandle a Cross Country Rider from Atlanta, GA

Date Reviewed: August 28, 2003

Strengths:    Stiff shoe, comfortable fit

Weaknesses:    Poor construction

Bottom Line:   
These shoes suck! Do not buy them. I bought a pair from the Pearl Izumi Outlet store. When I got a few miles away, I opened the box and noticed that the sole on one of the shoes was starting to come off. I turned around and drove back to the outlet and they exchanged them for another pair that looked better. Well, then after about 7 or 8 rides on them, one of the soles started to come off as well. I'm never going to buy another pair of Pearl Izumi shoes again.

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Favorite Trail:   all trails

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $80.00

Purchased At:   Pearl Izumi Outlet store

Bike Setup:   Wolf Creek titanium hardtail, Kooka crank, Avid Arch Rivals brakes, etc

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Dan Weiss a Cross Country Rider from Denver, CO

Date Reviewed: August 19, 2003

Strengths:    Cool colors.

Weaknesses:    Stitching came apart after ONE ride!

Bottom Line:   
Pearl Izumi should not be making shoes. I bought this pair which literally unstitched itself during my first ride. I then exchanged this pair for PI's next best model. AND again, the stitching came apart. I attribute both occurences the result of a poorly made shoe. Save your money and buy Sidi.

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Favorite Trail:   Hall Ranch

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $80.00

Purchased At:   REI

Bike Setup:   Specialized StumpJumper

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:3
Submitted by paul shell a Weekend Warrior from alpharetta, ga

Date Reviewed: August 18, 2003

Strengths:    great fit, seemed like a quality mountain bike shoe.

Weaknesses:    after 5 weeks, they tore apart @ the sole. Do not buy !!

Bottom Line:   
the shoe fit really well, looked like a good midpriced shoe, however the sole came off after 5 weeks.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $109.00

Similar Products Used:   replaced with sidi


Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Micah Hayes a Cross Country Rider from Sherman,Tx,Grayson

Date Reviewed: June 10, 2003

Strengths:    GO hard soul

Weaknesses:    Tears a part at soul

Bottom Line:   
It sucks and i can't get my money back. Don't buy them!!!

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Favorite Trail:   Bar-H

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $90.00

Purchased At:   excel sports.com


Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:2
Submitted by Jarrod a Weekend Warrior from Fresno, California, USA

Date Reviewed: June 5, 2003

Strengths:    Not a whole lot..

Weaknesses:    SOle is coming off of the shoe.. Uncomfortable for the first couple of rides..

Bottom Line:   
Its an ok shoe.. just wish they wouldnt have come apart...

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $90.00

Bike Setup:   Stock Fisher Sugar 2

Reviews 1 - 15 (20 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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