MXA TEAM TESTED: TCX COMP EVO MICHELIN BOOTS
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WHAT IS IT? In the past TCX has been more focused on private-labeling boots for other companies than marketing its own. Chances are, you’ve owned a pair of boots that came out of the TCX factory without ever knowing it (even the unobtainium Nike boot was reportedly a TCX). After being the secret sauce in other companies’ boot recipes for years, TCX has finally decided to focus on its own line of boots. They even collaborated with tire giant Michelin to make the TCX Comp Evo boot.
WHAT’S IT COST? $569.99.
CONTACT? www.ridetcxboots.com or your local dealer.
WHAT STANDS OUT? Here’s a list of things that stand out with the TCX Comp Evo Michelin boot.
(1) Features. The Comp Evo is TCX’s top-of-the-line boot. It features all the bells and whistles that a top-tier boot should have. Its unique Double Flex Control system allows the boot to angle up to 18 degrees forward and 15 degrees rearward. This allows for flexibility while providing a progressive stop to avoid overextension of the ankle joint. The Comp Evo’s molded sole is placed onto a polyurethane footbed designed with different densities and thicknesses to fine-tune the rider’s feel and offers the added protection of a steel shank that extends into the heel for more arch stiffness. Michelin supplies the proprietary rubber sole for durability and grip. The boot features an external polyurethane exterior and a soft internal upper with double-Velcro fastening. There is an elastic collar at the top of the boot to keep dirt, mud and water out. A rubber heat guard offers protection from the pipe and frame while enhancing the grip. The shin plate is adjustable to fit different calf dimensions and to accommodate bulky knee braces. The locking quick-release buckles are made out of aluminum.
(2) Break-in. Break-in was painless. The MXA test riders felt right at home within a few laps. We had no issues manipulating the controls or finding our place on the pegs. Plus, the more we rode in the TCX Comp Evos, the more the boots loosened up—enough so that we were able to readjust the buckles.
(3) Weight. The Comp Evo Michelin boot is not the heaviest nor the lightest boot on the market; it’s in the middle. At 4.7 pounds it is in the same weight class as the Alpinestars Tech 10 and Gaerne SG-10.
(4) Comfort. This is a non-bootie boot. If you are a fan of booties, you should give non-bootie boots a try, because they feel much plusher than the average bootie, which is really more of a sizing apparatus. The TCX slipped on with ease and was supremely comfortable. There were no hot spots during the break-in process or thereafter. Our testers were more than pleased with the fit and comfort level of the boot.
(5) Performance. This boot is built for performance and longevity. The heat guards are perfectly placed to protect the boot from excessive wear on the pipe or frame tubing. The Michelin rubber makes the boot stick to the pegs, yet didn’t show excessive wear. The bulletproof aluminum buckles latch with ease and stay closed. Overall, our testers loved these boots. (6) Options. TCX makes the Comp Evo Michelin boot in sizes 5 to 14 and offers it in seven different colors.
WHAT’S THE SQUAWK? We have two quibbles: (1) There are MXA test riders who refuse to wear heavy boots. They typically have knee injuries and don’t want 4-1/2 pounds bouncing across the ground. So, for them, all of the premium boots are non-starters. (2) We loved the extra features of the TXC Comp Evo Michelin, but we didn’t love the $570 price tag.
MXA RATING: In a boot world dominated by Alpinestars, Gaerne and Sidi, it’s refreshing to see a boot with unique features all its own, not to mention a partnership with one of the
preeminent rubber companies in the world. The TCX Comp Evo Michelin easily competes with the top-tier boots on the market.