How a lot blacker might Fulcrum's new wheels be? The reply isn’t any extra
Fulcrum today announced two new performance-oriented CMPTZN road bikes that sit one rung above the standard Speed 40 and 55 DB models.
The new aero-oriented Speed 40 and Speed 55 CMPTZN DB wheels, named after their rim depth, are part of the Racing Zero Carbon CMPTZN DB with a flat cross-section, which was first introduced in April, and have a similarly classic, completely black color Appearance lighter with lower rolling resistance than its older sibling. Working with Team Cofidis, Fulcrum wanted to develop a range of standard bikes that would meet the needs of Elia Viviani and the company in UCI WorldTour races.
The biggest upgrade compared to the standard Speed models is the use of Fulcrum's highest quality CULT bearings, which are made of ceramic balls and cryogenically treated steel rings to reduce rolling resistance. In fact, the CULT bearings are said to be so precisely machined and so corrosion resistant that no grease is required for lubrication. A drop of oil is all that is needed, which Fulcrum says will further reduce the hub's rolling friction.
Tested at 500 rpm, bikes with CULT bearings are said to take 45 minutes to stop spinning. On the positive side, the CULT bearings weigh 10 g less per set than the USB bearings for the DB Speed 40 and 55 wheels.
Fulcrum has chosen a black-on-black color scheme, which is supposed to give the wheels an extremely classy and timeless look. However, the minimalist design was only one factor in Fulcrum's decision for this darker look. The black graphics are also said to be lighter than the lighter appearance of other Fulcrum wheels, although it was specified exactly how much lighter Fulcrum was not specified. To complement the darker appearance of the rims, Fulcrum has also given the new hubs the matt black treatment.
The new wheels get the same full carbon, tubeless rim with an outside width of 26.5 mm, an inside width of 19 mm and a woven surface that is supposed to "optimize the elastic response of the rim". Like the Speed 40 and 55 DB, the CMPTZN wheels have 21 spokes per wheel with a 2-to-1 lacing pattern.
With these improvements, the new wheels weigh 1,460 g for the 40 CMPTZN and 1,570 g for the 55 CMPTZN – exactly 10 g lighter than the standard Speed versions. Given that the bearings are supposed to offer a 10g savings, the claimed weight-saving properties of the darker graphics seem dubious at best.
The DB wheels Speed 40 and 55 CMPTZN DB are now available in limited quantities. The increase in production will follow in February 2021. Selling price is US $ 2,810-2,821 / £ 2,600 / € 2,250-2,259 (Australian prices to be confirmed).
Please visit www.fulcrumwheels.com for more information.