Shoes come between you and your car. That's unavoidable. Good ones feel like they don't. Purpose-made driving shoes with all manner of pretense and peacockishness have attempted to fill that space, with varying results. For us though? We stick to a few proven shoes that'll go wherever wherever our off-track inclinations take us, but never get in the way.
Any ol' Nike running shoe.
There might not be a better non-driving, driving shoe than your average pair of Nikes. Lightweight and advanced materials, highly engineered structures and sticky soles; there's more technology in a pair of modern Nike running shoes than there is in most of my cars. Kicks like these are trim in all the right places, for easy footbox fiddling, padded where they ought to be for stabbing at heavy clutches and well-ventilated, so your feet are cool even when they're inches away from hot engines or transmissions. When it comes to comfort and performance in the car, good running shoes have few equals.
Dainese Vera Cruz Moto Shoes
The is a motorcycle shoe for casual, comfortable riding. It slays at that job, with a close fit, firm sole, and an integrated toe cap that keeps the shifter from tearing apart the top of your footwear. But forget its intent, the look of the Vera Cruz is pure driving shoe. A large, rockable heel and those thin lines make this lightweight contender as effective handling pedals as well as it does pegs.
Converse Chuck Taylor All-Star
No shoe has traveled more miles with me than my classic 's. My Chucks are old, beat to hell, and dirtier than a teenage boy's search history. I'd be shocked if they had anything less than a hundred thousand miles, yet they're still kickin' along just fine. The classic basketball sole sticks to the pedals just like it sticks to the court, which makes up for the flexible canvas construction when your feet get busy in the footwell.
Cole Haan Original Grand Penny Loafers
Ayrton Senna was wearing simple loafers when he wrung the neck of an NSX at Suzuka in 1992. The of Senna's white-socked footwork is legendary. Cole Haan's modern update of the combines classic looks and lightweight, comfortable Nike Lunarlon underpinnings. If the loafer was good enough for Senna, surely it's good enough for you.
Another athletic legend, the Samba is the second best selling shoe. Ever. In production since 1950, the odds are good that not every Samba sees the soccer pitch. Mine certainly haven't, but they're more than competent dancing between three pedals. A good, firm sole and a sturdy leather upper responds well to firm clutch and brake pedals.