Mavic CXR60 C Ride Report
Written by: Greg Kopecky
Added: Wed Jul 10 2013
Slowtwitch contributor and engineer, Tom Anhalt, attended Mavic’s product launch in France and reported back with many details for us. If you’re interested the details of aerodynamics, rolling resistance, and other geek-tastic things about this product, check out the link above. It has more tech than you can handle. We also have last year’s CXR80 wind tunnel report linked at the bottom of this page.
Let’s get started with the basics.
-MSRP $2750 for complete WTS (wheel-tire system)
-Available September 2013
-Weight for WTS: 2,515 grams
-Weight for wheels ONLY: 1,825 grams
-Includes quick release skewers, rim tape, valve extenders, wheel bags, spoke tool, brake pads, and hub adjustment tool
-Tire price $80/ea – includes one pair of Blades
The first thing I noticed with these wheels is that they have the quality that I’ve come to expect with Mavic. They include nice touches that cost real money on their end – wheel bags, a spoke tool, brake pads, a hub tool, and so on. You don’t get all this from every manufacturer out there.
The Blade itself is thin and flexible; you can peel it back easily with your hand:
Because we love details, let’s cover the rim measurements:
-Rim internal width: 13mm (13-622)
-Measured rim external width at braking surface: 25.2mm
-Tire width at 100psi (Blades removed): 22.0mm
When you install the Blades, it adds approximately 1mm to the effective tire width. I say ‘approximately' because the Blades are soft and flexible, and are tough to measure perfectly with a caliper.
Here is a closer look at the inside of the CXR Yksion clincher tire:
My opinion is that tire width and internal rim width should roughly correlate, but we don’t need to lose sleep over small differences. A 22mm tire like this model from Mavic is fine on a 13mm (13c) rim. It would also work on a 15c rim, too. For aerodynamic purposes, I’m more concerned with the external rim width – especially for wheels that don’t have fancy Blades. The ambient air and crosswind are going to ‘see’ the outside of the rim. Mavic was also likely considering weight when choosing the narrower width; at 1,800+ grams for the wheels alone, they probably didn’t want to add any more.
The only ‘bummer’ about the Mavic system is the fact that you only get one tire choice. Similar to the tubular version, they recommend using ONLY their tire, as they cannot vouch for the performance of other tires. In addition, the tires rub on the Blades as they turn and deform on the road, and Mavic says that they’ve specifically designed and tested their tires to deal with this abrasion safely.
I would like to see is at least one wider tire option – say, 24mm actual measured width. A larger tire option – while likely less aerodynamic – could add comfort and safety for road conditions and riders that stray from the very middle of the bell curve.
Mavic uses the same hubs on all versions of the CXR wheels. My test wheels were sent with a Shimano/SRAM 9-10-11 speed freehub (a Campagnolo version is available, too):
After riding the CXR60 C wheels in training, I decided to give them the race test at Rev3 Williamsburg. Travel is always a good test of durability, and the course looked to have a mix of flats, rolling hills, smooth pavement, and good ol’ American chipseal.
The arrived safe and sound after the plane flight; even the Blades were in-tact on the wheels (I had deflated the tires completely). Unlucky for us – but good for this test – we awoke to heavy rain showers on race morning. I didn’t get any wet weather testing in training, and was about to find out how that fancy Exalith braking surface and proprietary brake pads performed while soaking wet.
Perhaps my memory is failing me, but I think races happen in all of those conditions. I only rode the wheels with the supplied Exalith pads, so I cannot vouch for performance with anything else. To me, a piece of equipment should work well in the worst conditions, and when the worst circumstances happen in those conditions. In fact, this happened at the race in Williamsburg. While riding to transition on race morning with Minnesota-based pro, David Thompson, a van driving in front of us stopped suddenly as athletes crossed the road in front of it. With a heavy transition bag full of wetsuits, nutrition, and camera equipment, I was able to safely haul down to a stop in the pouring rain. I can confidently say that some other wheel and brake pad combinations I’ve ridden could have ended with less favorable results.
Overall, I really like the CXR60 C wheels. As Tom’s article mentioned, it looks like Mavic is doing serious homework in aerodynamics. The new Yksion CXR clincher has lower rolling resistance than the tubular tire, gaining us a few watts of speed. The braking is outstanding, the looks (while subjective) are good, and price is competitive with most major players.
Clearly, Mavic is making a big push into the world of triathlon and aerodynamic performance. The only criticisms I really have don’t even have anything to do with this wheel, but rather the wheels that don’t exist. More specifically, I’d like to see an 80mm version of this clincher wheel (with a few grams of weight taken out), and a smaller-diameter 650c size. My long-shot desire is that they’ll bring back the clincher version of their Comete disc. I imagine we’ll see more options come from Mavic in the future, and they’ll continue to make headway into the triathlon market.
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