Look embraces gravel with the 765 Gravel RS and e-765 Gravel
Look has hit the dirt road running with a brace of gravel bikes: one man-powered, the other motor assisted.
The two bikes share their DNA, with the 765 Gravel RS being a very race-focussed gravel bike, while the e-765 Gravel is a touch more relaxed but should still be quick up the hills thanks to its electric assistance.
Neat, rattle-free cable routingTom Marvin / Immediate Media
The 765 Gravel RS plays on what Look refers to as ‘the new playground’ — gravel roads that are becoming increasingly popular to ride, especially in the US.
The RS in the name stands for Racing Sport, hinting at the general demeanour of the bike. This means that there’s an increased proportion of high modulus carbon fibres in the frame’s layup, for a lighter, snappier ride.
Betting on the future — UCI approval for the gravel frameTom Marvin / Immediate Media
There’s also a UCI Legal sticker just ahead of the seatpost, which could hint to the bike’s intentions. While there are no UCI sanctioned gravel races, Look believes that there could be soon in the future and therefore want a bike ready to go.
Look also says the 765 Gravel RS is suitable for cyclocross.
The frames weigh a reported 1.2kg with a 350g fork.
Look 765 Gravel RS frame design
Look has gone where a number of other gravel frames have gone before, with a dropped chainstay design. This gives Look the ability to put wider tyres in its frame and maintain the use of road cranks (and their narrower Q-factor) and up to a 50t chainring.
SRAM’s 1×11 Force groupset is used, but it’s a relatively tight cassette at the backTom Marvin / Immediate Media
Tyre size is a hot topic in gravel, and Look says that the bike can run regular road-sized wheels and tyres for more road-orientated riders and easily up to 40c tyres on slightly wider 700c rims for those who want a fair mix of road and dirt.
For those who want to purely hit the dirt, 650×2.1in tyres and wheels can also be fitted. These have a far larger volume for better traction and comfort but maintain a very similar outer diameter.
The chainstays get the 3D Wave treatment, which we saw recently on the E765 Optimum E-Road bike that Look launched. This profile, which has two distinct curves in the tube profile, is said to offer 15 percent more compliance than a straight tube.
This is handy on a gravel bike, not just for comfort over rougher terrain, but also to improve the tyre’s ability to track undulations in the road surface, thus improving traction.
The 3D Wave chainstays are there to improve compliance and gripTom Marvin / Immediate Media
To make sure that the bikes are ready to get out into the wilderness there are four bottle cage mounts on the bike: three inside the main triangle and one below it. One of them is super low in the frame to improve weight distribution, which I suspect will be limited to 500ml bidons if you wish to use all four.
There’s also a pair of bolts on top of the top tube for a bento box, ready for long stints in the saddle, and there are fender mounts to keep you dry too.
The Look 765 RS Gravel range
Three models make up the 765 RS Gravel range:
The SRAM Force version of the 765 RS Gravel comes with a matt green paintjobLook
Up top is the SRAM Force 1×11 bike, featuring a Force carbon crank with 42t ring and an 11-36t cassette.
It comes with Force brakes, Mavic All Road Disc CL tubeless wheels with WTB Riddler 37mm tyres, Look’s finishing kit (including a 12-degree flare gravel specific bar) and Fizik Antares R7 saddle.
Look will be selling this bike for €4,299.
Shimano Ultegra adorns this 765 RS GravelLook
Next is a Shimano Ultegra build.
This comes with a 50-34 double chainset and 11-34t cassette, and Shimano’s Ultegra hydraulic brakes. The bike rolls on Shimano RS 370 wheels and the same WTB Riddler tyres. Finishing kit is again Look and Fizik.
This model comes in at €3,999.
This version of the 765 RS Gravel comes with a 2×11 Shimano 105 groupLook
Finally, there’s a Shimano 105 group bike in very much the same format, though it’s Shimano RS 170 wheels this time, and has a price of €3,599.
For our initial ride impressions of the Force level bike, scroll down!
The Look e-765 Gravel
The e-765 RS Gravel takes inspiration from the 765 RS Gravel and the e-765 OptimumTom Marvin / Immediate Media
Look has taken the 765 RS Gravel and the e-765 Optimum (check out the details of that here) and merged them together to create the e-765 Gravel — an electrically assisted gravel bike.
Many of the features from the 765 RS Gravel can be found on the electric bike version: the 3D Wave seatstays, dropped chainstays and colour too. However, these are joined by the Fauza motor, which has impressed in the past.
As with the e-765 Optimum, Look chose this motor because of its low weight and unobtrusive feel through the cranks.
Look leaves the base of the Fazua motor naked to reduce the chance of water pooling and to keep the motor coolTom Marvin / Immediate Media
The motor, battery and bottom bracket system weigh around 4kg, so there’s not a massive weight penalty, and if the feeling on the bike is similar to its tarmac sibling, it shouldn’t make too much of a difference to how the bike rides.
The motor has 250 watts continuous power, peaking at 400 watts, while there’s 60Nm of torque and a 250Wh battery. Four power modes are offered, though one of those is a non-assist mode. Look has had a play with the software to give a power profile that’s better suited to gravel riding, it says.
There’s an associated app with the bike too. This gives you all the data you need on the battery and motor, including temperature, battery level and range. It also has mapping capabilities, including a rather smart map that will show you the range at which you’ll be able to get to and back from on one battery charge. How accurate that is in reality obviously depends on a number of factors, though.
The battery and motor ‘Drivepack’ can be dropped easily out of the bike, leaving just the 1kg bottom bracket assembly behind, should you really want to go ‘au natural’!
The Drivepack contains both motor and batteryTom Marvin / Immediate Media
Look e-765 Gravel range
There are two e-765 Gravel bikes on offer from Look.
SRAM Force appears on this top-level e-765 GravelLook
There’s a SRAM Force 1×11 build, with a FSA crank featuring a 42t ring and SRAM 11-36t cassette. This bike comes with Force CX1 brakes and Mavic All Road Disc wheels with WTB Riddler 37mm tyres. Look provides the finishing kit and Fizik the Antares R7 saddle.
This version costs €6,499.
SRAM Rival provides the stop and go hereLook
There’s also a SRAM Rival 1×11 bike, following much the same pattern, though it comes with a Shimano RS 170 wheelset and a San Marco Monza saddle.
This bike is priced at €5,799.
Look 765 RS Gravel first ride impressions
I took a quick 10km ride on the 765 RS Gravel through the vineyards of the Loire Valley to get a flavour of the bike.
The first thing I noticed is that this is clearly a race-inspired design. The position on the bike feels fairly low and aggressive, and this is compounded as soon as you hit the dirt.
The front of the bike — fork, head tube, stem and bars — are fairly stiff and uncompromising, which is further accentuated by the thin bar tape I had on my test bike.
Thin bar tape adds to the racy feelTom Marvin / Immediate Media
This combined to give a fairly harsh initial ride. However, if I had further time to play around I’d ensure I ran the tyres tubeless, to drop pressure, and would investigate running slightly wider tyres than the 700x37c WTB Riddlers on there as stock.
The tyres themselves are the Fast Rolling, Light version. Despite a relatively skinny profile and low-stack tread, I didn’t have any traction issues up loose climbs — perhaps those 3D Wave seatstays really are contributing.
Decent clearance for the low-profile 37mm WTB Riddler tyresTom Marvin / Immediate Media
The drivetrain, yet again, clearly shows road inspiration, with a tight 11-36 range. With no ‘easy’ gear on there, it encourages you to attack climbs because it’s rather tricky to sit and spin. Dropping a 10-42 cassette on there shouldn’t be an issue if your chain is long enough.
As I’ve often found, the faster you go over gravel the comfier it gets, and this was no different on the Look machine. It’s not the most sofa-like ride, and certainly has that aggressive edge, but it’s perfectly able to cross choppier ground and dodge potholes with its snappy, engaging handling.