My Sidi "City" boots are about ten years ago and fairly worn out, especially on the left foot sole, so when I saw a new pair of Sidi boots at Lone Star BMW in Austin last week, I decided to give them a try. I looked at a pair of Rev'it boots before I tried on the Sidi boot. They felt good, but lacked, in my opinion, a certain utilitarian look and looked a little to flashy for me so on to the Sidi boots.
Sidi has quite a few different boots models, especially ones with air-flow designs, but those don't interest me since my biggest concern is keeping my feet dry during a heavy rain storm. I use a thicker, Smart Wool, sock which are great at wicking away perspiration so I wanted to make sure the Sidi would accommodate a thicker sock without having to up-size on the boot size. The "On Road" model has a taller calf than most so you just can't jump into them like an old pair of Red Wings. The top calf part is Velcroed with a big flap that allows for plenty of adjustment especially if you wear your jeans inside the boot (I don't). That's followed by two other velcro straps down at the ankle level that let you adjust for your particular foot fitment. It's impossible to get your foot into the boot without fully loosening those bottom straps and at first it seems like a tight slip into the boot effort, but once your foot is in, it's a good fit feeling. Even with my bigger left foot than right foot (mom planned it that way) I felt okay walking around the dealership floor. Actually, the top of the arch was a little stiff since it is fairly thick leather, but I thought a little riding would break that in. I was wrong, the top of my right foot actually hurt a little by the time we gassed up, but I chalked that up to my advanced years and kept moving. I discovered that all I needed was to walk a little more in them instead of just slapping them on and riding over 300 miles. When I got home I wore them all day Saturday at home, no riding, and they felt much better by the end of the day. They were very comfortable.
While I was trying on different boots a fellow rider walked up and said, "get those On Road boots, I'm wearing that boot right now and have over 100,000 miles on them and they are the best boot I've ever had. I'd buy another pair any-day". He assured me he wasn't a Sidi sales rep when I asked! I mentioned that I've had the same experience with my present boot, the Sidi City; kept me dry in the worst of frog chokers.
My old Sidi boots were very good, the only drawback is that they are not leather, but Lorica, a man-made material that looks and acts like leather. Many riders might think Lorica is better than leather because it's lighter and more pliable, but not to me because they never really take a shine. They look well-worn, faded and dull. I've tried to make them look better, but it seems like no matter what I tried they just went back to that well-worn look. So it's something to consider when you're looking at a pair of Sidi boots, Lorica or Leather.
The "On Road" model is leather with Gore-Tex layered below the leather to allow for breathability yet retaining a totally water proof boot. Check out the Gore Tex site at https://www.gore-tex.com
When you're looking at a new pair of Sidi boots it's hard to tell if they're leather or Lorica so look for that little patch of cow hide leather that's attached to the boot along with the Gore-Tex tag. I think that's the international mandatory labeling system that assures you are buying a real leather item and not a synthetic leather.
I rode in cool weather so I can't say much for how hot your feet might get, but if it's like my other pair they'll be fine. They were very protective out in the cold and my feet were just fine. The soles with the lug pattern are thicker than a street boot so you might have to, as I did, adjust the shifter position so that you can slip your boot under the shifter more easily. The grip on both the pegs and on the pavement is excellent. Feels much 'stickier' than my old boot or any of my Red Wings. Inside the boot is lined with a smooth soft cloth type material (feels synthetic) and the insole is firm, but comfortable. There is extra padding on the shin which is always good and there's an ankle bone disk protector on the outer side of the boot. Between the front shin protector on the calf and the foot there is a nice ribbed-creased leather section to allow for foot flexibility. The lower velcro straps also allow you to custom fit the boot to your particular foot anatomy so you won't have your foot slipping up and down while you walk. Of course, there's the double leather toe shifter protection on both the right and left boot, something that was sorely missing in my other pair. On the backside of the calf is also the ribbed-creased leather section and a double leather reinforcement strap running up the calf.
These are handcrafted leather boots made in Italy so the stitching is excellent and without defect. So let's see if the Sidi Sales Rep is right on this 100,000 mile boot!