Fizik's latest Antares Versus road saddle retains the general shape of the popular flat-topped Antares but adds a full-length central channel that's designed to reduce pressure on soft tissue during longer rides.
However, while the channel is generously sized – about 4mm deep and differing in width from 2cm at the nose to 5cm at the tail – and does decrease soft tissue pressure, the effect isn't as pronounced as we'd hoped based on appearances.
The culprit seems to be the density of the surrounding foam, which is notably lower than that of the standard Antares' very firm (yet very supportive) padding and quickly compresses under body weight, flattening out the profile.
As a result, the real-world gap between the two Antares versions is noticeable but surprisingly subtle. Still, the Versus remains an enticing option for riders seeking a high-end saddle. Total weight with k:ium rails is a respectable 214g, the quality of construction is superb, and the styling is sleek and stealthy.
If the standard Antares' non-cutout shape and rock-hard feel worries you the new Versus iteration may be just the ticket – but if you're already on a standard Antares we'd suggest staying put as you likely won't notice enough of a difference to warrant the change.