Once a dark horse in Motocross with the invention of the now routinely copied neck brace, Leatt arguably has a firm grip on being one of the more respected brands to offer a full line of dirt bike riding protection.
Leatt uses the decimal point system to name their product line as we saw earlier in our review of their flagship Velocity 6.5 goggles. Chest protection, helmets, even gloves reflect similar product names. The same goes for their riding boots starting with the Leatt 3.5 boot.
The Leatt 5.5 dirt bike boot is the company's flagship riding boot that features a FlexLock system allowing the user to adjust the lower boot flex for personal preference, a low profile toe box for easier shifting, a CE certified reinforced steel shank, and a SlideLock system that forms a seal around your calf, among other call-outs.
The initial introduction of the Leatt 5.5 boot required a redesign as riders complained about the ankle pinch points. Ouch! Pinch point is right. That issue has been fully addressed in the updated 5.5 model and now riders no longer have to grin and bear it or hurriedly remove the boot and find a way to pinch back.
So how does the new Leatt 5.5 FlexLock boot wear?
MotoSport employee Ryan Forbes a mostly all-around fan of Leatt and one of those complaining riders of the pinch point took the 5.5 boots for a trail ride on his 2016 Kawasaki KX250F and offered this gear-on throttle-rolled experience.
"The chassis is very similar to a Tech-7, but I will say, this boot maybe a little better believe it or not," Forbes said, noting the buckle system is nearly identical to the popular Alpinestars boot. "I tend to get a little heal float in the Tech 7 and that was not the case in the 5.5."
The new SlideLock system, which uses a more forgiving Velcro, works as designed and prevents the cuff from bunching up after locking the buckles. Like the neck brace, expect other manufacturers to follow suit in reproducing this innovative design for their own boots. It works and contributes to the efficient seal around the calf.
As for the FlexLock system, which locks out or prevents ankle movement when over flexed (and according to Leatt, reduces forces to the ankle by up to 37 percent and the knee by up to 35 percent), Forbes did not have a hands-on, or perhaps more appropriately a foot-on experience, to gauge efficacy.
"But I will say I removed the FlexLock insert to see how the boot flexed without it, and what a big difference," he said. "That little piece really does add some rigidity and I could imagine the difference with a different type or less rigid insert."
Overall, the easy-to-use four-buckle system remained closed for the duration of the ride and Forbes encountered no issues finding or feeling the foot controls and experienced what he describes as "great peg feel." The 5.5 boots broke in quickly offering immediate comfort when riding and he considered them "good to go" after a short day of riding. The Leatt 5.5 boot fits true to size with a medium-sized calf opening and the inside contact grip point to the bike is large and flat offering optimal contact.
As for downsides?
"Well, there really isn't any. I put 12 hours on these boots and my only complaint is it isn't waterproof or even resistant," Forbes said. "But from my experience, no Motocross or enduro boots are for that matter. Great job Leatt."