Speedplay's Zero Aero pedals and Walkable Cleats are here to win over doubters
Over the past year or so, Speedplay has adapted its lovable lollipop pedals for everything from the aero enthusiast to those with a hunger for all things gravel.
While Speedplay’s faithful user base swears by the pedals, its cleats have been a bit of a mixed bag. The adjustability is second to none, but their price, lack of traction and questionable durability make them a true hassle.
Released together, the Aero Walkable Cleats and Zero Aero pedals offer an interesting solution to our cleat-based woes.
Speedplay claims the dimpled underside of the zero aero pedals offer some wind cheating advantage:
Speedplay’s new Zero Aero trades dual sided entry for aerodynamics, but is it worth it?
Every second counts when attempting the world hour record, and longtime Speedplay pedal user Sir Bradley Wiggins, stomping down on the Speedplay Aero Pedal (and Walkable Cleats) covered a blistering 54.526km.
We’re not sure how much aero advantage is on offer from the new Aero Pedal system, but it’s definitely sleek in comparison to the standard Zeros. Either way, it’s marginal gains for those looking at the Zero Aero pedals.
Beyond the dimpled underside for the pedal body, there’s not a whole lot different between the standard Zero and the Zero Aero. Except for the lost dual-sided entry, of course.
Maintenance is also a little bit different as the grease port is well hidden and requires a small grommet (included) to guide the grease though the pedal.
Similarly to the standard Zero, the Zero Aero has a claimed stack height of just 8.5mm for four-hole mounting and 11.5mm for three-hole mounting.
Our stainless steel spindle sample items are claimed to offer up to 37 degrees of cornering clearance. They weigh in at 210g for the pair, excluding cleats.
Aero Walkable Cleat – £60 / $55 / AU$90
Arguably more exciting for the masses than the zero aero is the new walkable cleat:
It seems Speedplay has solved the major complaints users have with their cleats
Arguably more exciting than the Zero Aero pedals are Speedplay’s new Walkable Cleats. Long and loud have Speedplay users lamented the negligible traction of the cleats, and near-mandatory cleat covers.
Then there’s the fast-wearing exposed hardware. At least one BikeRadar staffer is guilty of having to drill out cleat bolts because they get too worn down for a screwdriver.
With the Walkable Cleats, the rubber cleat covers are part of the package – all the time. Not only should they offer vastly improved traction, but also protect the hardware underneath from wear. The covers are replaceable and available in a range of colours, if you’re the type of rider who likes your cleats to match your shoes.
Compatible with all existing Zero series pedals, the new cleats are quite low profile – especially for those with Speedplay specific shoes (four-bolt) – and the rounded profile should also allow for a bit less awkwardness when walking.
The new Walkable Cleats also come with plugs called Cleat Buddies, which protect the mechanism from grit and grime. They snap together to minimise the space they take up in your jersey pocket.
Despite the positives, at 136g for the pair, there’s a 31g weight penalty over the standard cleats to be aware of.
Speedplay Torque Wrench – £16 / $18 / AU$30
The new torque wrench makes it easy not to over tighten your cleat hardware:
Never overtighten a cleat bolt again
The importance of tightening Speedplay cleat bolts to the correct torque is often overlooked, and it doesn’t take much force to damage the hardware. With this, Speedplay has released a preset 2.5nm torque key to cater for its surprisingly low recommended torque.
There aren’t many bells and whistles to shout about – it only comes with one bit and clicks out like any other preset torque wrench. But it should be useful for Speedplay lovers, given most torque wrenches only start from 3nm.