First look: FFWD F2R-190 Ceramic wheelset

Almost sub-1kg road wheels

Holy light wheels, Batman!  Dutch company FFWD appeals to the climbers with its F2R-190 Ceramic road tubular wheels.  Total weight is an impressive 1022g for the pair (456g/566g front/rear plus 100g for the included skewers) and the retail price is just as staggering at €1798.00 (roughly £1430/US$2800 by current exchange rates).

The 20mm-deep carbon tubular rims clearly value light weight over aerodynamics although FFWD makes up some of the difference with the DT Swiss Aerolite spokes and alloy nipples.  DT Swiss is also tapped for its ultralight 190 Ceramic hubs which are available in Shimano, SRAM or Campagnolo spline patterns.  Carbon-specific pads and wheel bags are included as well.

The handbuilt wheels carry an 80kg (176lb) rider weight limit but that won't matter much in our case as we're sending these straight to the designated climber of the test crew who maybe comes to two-thirds of that limit with a full tummy...and cement shoes.   We'll report back once she's logged the requisite 100,000m of vertical gain.  Climb, Kirsten, climb!

Price: €1798.00

James Huang

Technical Editor, US
James started as a roadie in 1990 with his high school team but switched to dirt in 1994 and has enjoyed both ever since. Anything that comes through his hands is bound to be taken apart, and those hands still sometimes smell like fork oil even though he retired from shop life in 2007. He prefers manual over automatic, fizzy over still, and the right way over the easy way.
  • Discipline: Mountain, road, cyclocross
  • Preferred Terrain: Up in the Colorado high-country where the singletrack is still single, the dirt is still brown, and the aspens are in full bloom. Also, those perfect stretches of pavement where the road snakes across the mountainside like an artist's paintbrush.
  • Beer of Choice: Mexican Coke
  • Location: Boulder, Colorado, USA

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