5 Best Clipless Mountain Bike Pedals in 2017 – Which One You Want?

Mountain Bike Pedal

For cyclists who love braving mountain trails, marathons, or the bustling environment of a busy city, clipless bike pedals can provide an increased sense of finesse and control over their bicycle.

To truly unlock your potential as a cyclist, investing in a quality pair of clipless bike pedals is a must. However, knowing where to start looking for pedals that will fit your bike needs can be difficult.

Thankfully, we have put together this awesome consumer guide to help you limit your choices to the absolute best clipless pedals, fork, wheels are  available on the market right now.

Check it out to find out best clipless mountain bike pedals will increase your cyclist abilities the most:

Best Clipless Mountain Bike Pedals - Comparison

Best Clipless Mountain Bike Pedals - Reviews

1. Shimano PD-M530 MTB SPD Pedals

Shimano PD-M530 MTB SPD Pedals

Perfect for both highly experienced cyclists and beginner enthusiasts alike, the Shimano PD-M530 MTB SPD Pedals will keep you securely connected to your bicycle for a long time. 

Highly durable, these pedals will stay functional whether you are riding marathons, or a simple 5-mile trek to work every day. These pedals rock dual-sided entry, which allows you to quickly enter and exit the pedals with ease.

Additionally, the sealed cartridge-bearing spindle is simple to keep in shape, providing an easy way to keep up with optimal performance through minimal and occasional maintenance.

Perhaps one of the most attractive features of the Shimano PD-M530 MTB SPD Pedals model is how easily it sheds away debris like mud, twigs, and leaves. If you love riding on earthy terrain, you will not have to worry about these pedals getting overly dirty and cluttered.

Once again, this aspect of the model shows how easy it is to keep up with proper maintenance. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that Shimano PD-M530 MTB SPD Pedals are only compatible with two-bolt SPD cleats. Be sure to invest in a quality pair if you decide to go with this excellent pedals model.

Pros

  • Dual-Sided Entry
  • Easy Maintenance
  • Adjustable Cleat Retention

Cons

  • Only Compatible with Two-Bolt SPD Cleats
  • Only 1-Year Manufacturer Warranty

2. Shimano Unisex PD-M520 MTB SPD Pedals

Shimano Unisex PD-M520 MTB SPD Pedals

No matter what gender-type cleats you have, the Shimano Unisex PD-M520 MTB SPD Pedals have you covered. 

One of the best reviewed pedal models of the year.

This amazing product from Shimano is near weather-resistant, highly durable, and similar to its other brand-counterparts, easy to maintain. With many reviewers saying they find the Shimano Unisex PD-M520 MTB SPD Pedals a near perfect model, you can be sure you are making a smart investment.

Perfect for learning how to ride clipless for the first time, these pedals will help you adjust to a riding style that will unlock your full potential as a bike rider, whether you are a highly experienced cyclist, or a beginner enthusiast.

​The Shimano Unisex PD-M520 MTB SPD Pedals features adjustable tension levels, which allow you to keep your ride adjusted to your personal preferences. Additionally, this amazing feature will allow you to tighten tension to compensate for the types of cleats you choose to wear.

Perhaps the only serious downfall of the Shimano Unisex PD-M520 MTB SPD Pedals model is that reviewers have noticed its ability to shred debris is not quite as strong as other pedal models available from the brand.

Aside from this small downfall, it is hard to find a better pedal model on the market today.

Pros

  • Highly Adjustable Tension Settings
  • Perfect for Beginners and Advanced Users Alike

Cons

  • Debris-Resistance Could be Stronger
  • More Expensive than Other Models

3. Wellgo WPD-823 MTB Clipless Pedals

Wellgo WPD-823 MTB CR-MO Clipless Pedals

Not every user will want to make an immediate investment that high-end pedal brands like Shimano require.

If you want to gain access to a perfect beginner clipless pedal that lives up to the hype, the Wellgo WPD-823 MTB CR-MO Clipless Pedals has you covered

Listed at extremely affordable prices that are often less than $$, you get many of the great features you need to get you started riding clipless. The aluminum body is tough, and while it doesn’t keep debris out as easily as some of the Shimano models on this list, maintenance is fairly simple.

As long as you take the effort to keep your Wellgo WPD-823 MTB CR-MO Clipless Pedals properly maintained, they should last you for a few good years. Given the incredibly affordable price tag, this is an amazing feature.

Unfortunately, Wellgo WPD-823 MTB CR-MO Clipless Pedals are yet another model that is pretty limited when it comes to the types of cleats they are compatible with.

Be sure to own a pair of 98A style cleats, or you will be unable to click into these clipless pedals.

Pros

  • Highly Affordable
  • Easy to Maintain
  • Perfect for Beginner Cyclists

Cons

  • Limited Cleat Compatibility
  • Less Debris-Resistant

4. Diamondback Overdrive Clipless Pedals

Diamondback Overdrive  Clipless Pedals

Providing a good middle of the road price tag, the Diamondback Overdrive Mountain Clipless Pedals can help you achieve new levels of cycling skills.

Another extremely durable model, these pedals will serve you well both during marathons, and simple treks around town.

Made from stylish chrome alloy material, the Diamondback Overdrive Mountain Clipless Pedals will catch the idea of your fellow cycling enthusiast.

Being a trusted cycling brand for many years, Diamondback helps you feel secure in your purchase with a 1-year manufacturer warranty. While this could be better, it is certainly reasonable given the general price tag of less than $$.

The release tension adjustability for Diamondback Overdrive Mountain Clipless Pedals holds its own against higher-end brands. You can easily achieve the desired force and resistance in your pedals, making your ride as comfortable and enjoyable as possible.

Given the amount of miles you are likely to put onto these clipless pedals, this feature is very welcomed. Similar to most clipless models, you will need to have specialized cleats to use Diamondback Overdrive Mountain Clipless Pedals.

Lastly be sure that your order comes with these specialized cleats, or you will have to wait to use these awesome pedals.

Pros

  • Highly Adjustable Tension Settings
  • Stylish Chrome Alloy Design

Cons

  • Less Debris-Resistant

5. Shimano Clipless SPD Pedal PD-T780

Shimano Clipless Pedals SPD Pedal PD-T780

The most expensive choice on our list, and also the most valuable, these awesome Shimano clipless models provide the efficiency of a SPD pedal, alongside the convenient design of a platform pedal.

This model’s hybrid design helps set it apart from the competition, both practically and stylistically.

Perhaps the most durable clipless pedals on the market currently, commuters and marathon riders alike will be enjoying their product for years after they purchase them. Highly debris-resistant, and easy to maintain, you will never have to worry about whether or not the manufacturer warranty has you covered.

As long as you ride safely, these pedals should last you a long, long time. Style-wise, the beautifully forged alloy body contains both chrome and cromoly axle components.

Additionally, Shimano has slapped on an aesthetically placed reflector to keep you riding safely, no matter what time of the day you are out and about.

Amazingly adjustable tension settings, which rise up above all of the competition, cement the superiority of this fantastic model. No matter how you like your entry and release tension settings to be, these pedals should have you covered.

Pros

  • Unrivaled Tension Settings
  • Beautiful Design
  • Easily Maintained

Cons

  • The Most Expensive Choice on this List
  • Better Suited for Advanced Users

Things To Consider Before Buying

Tension Settings

Every rider will want to have their pedals give them a different amount of resistance; depending on what type of terrain they are riding that day. With this in mind, the versatility of pedals tension settings becomes very important.

best clipless mountain bike pedals– Guide & Reviews

Additionaly beginner cyclists will simply need the ability to make changes between a few stock settings, as they will not have the abilities to truly discern between minute settings. However, advanced cyclists, especially marathon riders, will highly benefit from a variety of minute tension settings.

More than any other feature, tension setting capabilities help high-end clipless pedals stand apart from their lower-end counterparts.

What do Tension Settings Affect

  • Clipping In/Out
  • Security
  • Peddling Tension

Cleat Type

The unfortunate side of clipless pedals (practically the only one), is that you almost always need very specific cleat types in order to use them.

To ensure you do not purchase clipless pedals that you cannot use, be sure to analyze the specifications to pinpoint which cleats you need.

Most clipless pedal brands will offer specific cleats to buy alongside their products, and you can often save money by buying these products in a combo package.

Maintenance Needs

Each clipless pedal type has varying degrees of debris-resistance. Additionally, some models have designs that make it easier to clean and maintain the pedals without roughing them up, or potentially disturbing the security of important mechanisms.

More expensive models will be almost seamless in both their ability to deflect most environmental factors, and in their maintenance needs. Lower-end clipless pedals, however, will need to be cleaned after almost every use.

Either way, frequent maintenance is extremely important to the durability of your clipless pedals.

Maintenance Issues

  • Debris-Resistance
  • How Frequently Does a Pedal Need to be Cleaned?
  • Can Beginner Cyclists Easily Clean the Pedals?

Final Verdict

Simply put, the Shimano Clipless Pedals SPD Pedal PD-T780 models easily take the spot of most recommended clipless pedals on this list.

With tension settings that blow the competition out of the water, a beautiful design, and a super durable construction, these pedals will have you riding in style and comfort for many years. The only real downfall of the model is the price tag, and the complicated settings.

For beginner users, Wellgo WPD-823 MTB CR-MO Clipless Pedals might be a better entry-level choice. However, if you want to take the plunge and make a smart long-term investment, the clear choice remains the Shimano model.

Feedback? Rate Below:

  • 5/5
  • 12 ratings
12 ratingsX
Very bad! Bad Hmmm Oke Good!
0% 0% 0% 0% 100%

Relevant Resources

About the Author Matthew R. Duncan

I am proud to be the go-to guy among my circle for bike advice. I take it personally when someone I know buys a new bike without consulting me first!

Leave a Comment: