DH champs and flat pedal specialists Sam Hill and Brook Macdonald helped design Five Ten‘s new Impact VXi for gravity fed, foot out junkies. The STEALTH Mi6 rubber outsole has 50-percent more shock absorption and damping than any other shoe on the market. Not only is it stickier than its competition but it also dampens impact as you smash through rock gardens. The upper has been slimmed down but provides more protection than the original, while shaving 25-percent off the weight. Plus they’ve added a quick-dry, hydrophobic upper.
Olympic medallist and pro MTB rider Jill Kintner reviews the new Impact:
“First of all, the old Impact shoe has been a staple piece of gear for YEARS to any downhill mountain biker. Sam Hill Won the first Elite Downhill World on flat pedals with that shoe in ’07, and many other riders have had it as their go-to shoe ever since.
Over the past year and a half, Five Ten asked a bunch of riders from their “Elite” team about ways to improve a few different shoes. With the redesign, the Impact VXi addressed issues regarding the weight, protection, and weatherproofing, like the athletes requested.
So my first thought on this shoe was that the weight was hands-down the most notable improvement. This shoe is so light compared to the old Impact, but stiff in the right places, malleable through the toes, with the same amount of stiction to the pedals with the Mi6 rubber. The whole shoe overall is a bit more sleek, too. The little impact dots on the bottom are smaller in diameter, but it didn’t really seem noticeable vs. the old bigger dots of the last generation impact and freeriders. It might be better for hiking, but hard to say after one ride.
Weatherproofing is such an important part of this new shoe as well. Wet soggy shoes are no fun, and weigh you down. This has been considered, and water and mud seem to shed off a lot better rather than absorbing into the material. It’s a smooth coated surface.
Toe protection seems really good on this shoe as well. If you have ever clipped anything with your foot on a trail, you will know the importance of a bit of reinforcement. The pinkie toe has a bit of reinforcement too on the side, which is a must. Cowboys have the same idea with their steel-toe boots; keeping toes safe when kicking rocks. These are not steel, but a rubber/plastic composite to keep your foot safe. You can notice the protective quality along the sole of the foot as well, while still being able to feel the pedal. Wizard engineers know their materials. Really impressive to have damping in the rubber, stiffness on the platform, and still be able to feel for control of where your foot is on the pedal.”