Fizik’s Vento series claims to stand for efficient power transfer and comfort. With the Vento Stabilita Carbon shoes, Fizik aim to achieve both thanks to the Arch Support 2.0 system and a newly designed carbon sole. We put the flagship model to the test to find out how they perform.
The features of the Fizik Vento Stabilita Carbon
Fizik’s Vento Stabilita Carbon features two main technologies: the Arch Support 2.0 design is designed to provide optimal support and efficient power transfer while the new Li2 Dual Zone BOA Fit system offers micro-adjustments. The BOA dials have shrunk in size, giving them a smaller diameter and flatter profile, which the manufacturer claims is significantly more aerodynamic. The upper material of the shoe is a combination of laminated polyurethane and mesh fabric, which is supposed to be resistant to deformation and thereby offer lasting support for the wearer’s feet. According to Fizik, the carbon sole of the Vento Stabilita Carbon is their stiffest yet. A large vent at the front of the sole is intended to prevent your feet from overheating while its low weight and high stiffness promise increased performance. Compared to other road shoes, the holes for the cleats have been moved back slightly for more efficient power transfer, especially in aggressive riding positions. That’s it for the theory. How do the shoes perform in the real world?
Things to bear in mind
The fit of the Fizik Vento Stabilita Carbon is designed to hug your feet closely. The front of the shoe is rather narrow, making it best suited to people with slim feet. If your feet are wide or you like having wiggle-room for your toes, then you probably won’t like the Vento Stabilita Carbon. As such, we recommend you try the shoe on before buying. The feature that distinguishes the Fizik Vento from other road bike shoes is the holes for the cleats, which are slightly offset to the rear. Keep that in mind if you are sensitive to changes in ergonomics.
The pros of the Vento Stabilita Carbon
What do road bike shoes have in common with encounters between people: there’s no second chance to make a good first impression. When you put on the Vento Stabilita Carbon for the first time, you’ll immediately recognise that it’s geared towards racing and performance. The shoes hug your foot all the way around and can be adjusted millimetre-precise thanks to the excellently integrated BOA ratchet system. When tightening the ratchets, the Arch Support 2.0 system, a wide band that runs from the sole under the arch to the top of the shoe, is tensioned against the arches of your feet. The feeling is a bit strange at first, but not unpleasant, and it keeps your feet from fatiguing on longer rides. It provides support regardless of whether you have very pronounced arches or flat feet. You won’t feel the Arch Support 2.0 system when you put the shoes on as it only generates the additional support when tightening the upper BOA ratchets. This arch support, in combination with the very stiff carbon sole, achieves what Fizik promise: power transfer is first-class, which not only results in added pedalling performance but also ups your game psychologically. It doesn’t feel like the force you’re applying is being absorbed by an inefficient shoe. The support from the stiff and slightly water-resistant material of the upper also contributes to this feeling.
What are the cons?
There’s a flip side to everything, even the comparatively stiff construction of the Fizik Vento Stabilita Carbon shoe. It supports your feet and ensures efficient power transmission but is also responsible for the shoes’ two biggest weaknesses. The inner material is quite solid, which makes the Fizik somewhat uncomfortable. Likewise, the flat toe box is prone to rubbing against your toes, unless the shoe fits perfectly. Moreover, the robust upper material isn’t the most breathable, which leaves the vent in the sole as your only source of cooling. This may suffice for rides in autumn, spring or on cool summer days, but things will quickly become uncomfortable on hot, mid-summer rides. We have to make some further deductions for cosmetic aspects of the otherwise excellent sole. If you put your foot down carelessly on a stony surface, the sole will scratch very easily. This might not affect the performance but it quickly makes the shoe look used, which hurts twice at this price.
The Fizik Vento Stabilita Carbon is a performance-oriented shoe for riders who are out to get results and don’t mind paying for it. We were impressed with its excellent arch support, finely adjustable BOA ratchet system and efficient power transfer. However, if your feet are very wide or very tall, they won’t fit perfectly and you’ll find the shoes to be uncomfortable, especially around your toes.
- supports the arches of your feet
- stiff and efficient power transfer
- finely adjustable via BOA system
- robust upper material
- moderate ventilation
- scratch-prone sole
Test duration 1 month
Weight 280 g per shoe in size 44
Price € 400
Manufacturer’s website fizik.com
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Words: Photos: Phillip Schwab