Offering German-designed and built products for nearly 25 years, Lupine has gained an impressive amount of light-building know-how, but how does its Wilma R perform in a market of less expensive offerings?
Lupine Wilma R7 details and specification
Pumping out an impressive 3,200 lumens from four LEDs arranged in a plus shape, the head unit’s body is made from anodised CNC machined 6061 T6 aluminium.
The head unit and battery pack both have an IP68 dust and waterproof rating and a 2-metre impact resistance rating.
The Wilma R is supplied with a serious amount of accessories. Alex Evans
The light’s supplied with a host of accessories including a 31.8mm bar mount, a helmet mount, a 121cm extension cable and a one-button Bluetooth remote. A 35mm bar mount is available aftermarket for €32.
The light unit and battery pack are connected by a 36cm long cable with a push-fit unidirectional fitting in the middle. There’s a single button on the top of the light that is used to turn it on and cycle between its various programmes and functions.
The light’s battery has a power indicator. Alex Evans
There are both battery power and mode selection indicators signified by a selection of different coloured LED lights on the head unit.
The battery pack also has five charge display LEDs, each equating to a charge percentage that jumps in 20 per cent increments.
To improve the readout’s accuracy, the charge indicator LEDs flash to denote a 10 per cent charge change.
Like the rest of the light, the remote is full of nice details. Alex Evans
The light has 14 potential modes that can be programmed using the iOS or Android app but comes pre-programmed with three settings: low, medium and highest brightness levels.
The Bluetooth remote’s button LED light also denotes battery level and it’s possible to connect one remote to multiple compatible Lupine lights.
The bar mount attaches to one side of the light’s body. Alex Evans
The supplied wall socket charger plugs directly into the battery’s cable to charge and the battery uses a Velcro strap to attach its curved shape to your bike.
Lupine Wilma R7 performance
The Lupine’s 3,200 claimed lumen output provides plenty of focused trail-illuminating power directly in front of the bike.
The four spot LEDs have enough light to tackle straighter, tricky terrain or fast, open tracks. As well as the close-range spot doing a good job of lighting what’s ahead, the light’s beam extends well into the distance with impressive power, fading rather than stopping abruptly.
The four LEDs are best suited to helmet-mounted applications. Alex Evans
This does come at the sacrifice of side-to-side illumination and the width of beam on offer is quite narrow, making it tricky to spot lines on the exits of corners or features as you’re heading around them.
The side-to-side cut off, unlike the light’s forward spread, is quite harsh, compounding the difficulty I had picking lines and spotting obstacles when turning lots.
The Lupine Wilma R7’s beam extends well into the distance but is quite narrow with a harsh side cut-off. Simon Bromley
To counter this, I did find myself constantly playing with the light’s mounting angle to try to get it to shine further to the sides. The lack of cowl meant that this caused dazzling but, arguably, the light shouldn’t be set to such extreme angles.
Unfortunately, changing the light’s beam without replacing the lenses isn’t possible — the beam is focused and that’s that.
On the bike, the head unit is really inconspicuous. Alex Evans
Although this isn’t ideal for bar-mounted applications, it’s perfect for those looking to put the light on their lid to partner with a secondary, bar-mounted flood light.
And, if you stay with Lupine lights, you’ll benefit from the remote’s multi-light controlling functionality. This will cost a small fortune, though, but you know you’re going to get top-performing kit.
The battery mounts using a single strap. Alex Evans
The LEDs emit a neutral yellow-white colour when combined with the beam’s focus and makes for quite a formidable combination, letting you pick out obstacles and details with pinpoint accuracy.
The bar clamp is very easy to use and I liked how no tools are needed to remove it, making swapping between bikes a breeze, as long as they’ve got the same diameter bars.
The remote is also easy to use and the rubber strap meant it stayed in place even when it was being used in a heavy-handed way.
The head unit sits in front of and centrally over the stem. Alex Evans
First time assembly is quite fiddly, requiring the screwing on and removal of various bolts and mounts depending on how you’re going to use the light. The light’s supplied with all of the correct tools, though, and all of the fittings feel very well made.
Setting up and understanding how to use the light can be quite time consuming. It’s supplied with a 24-page manual that does a solid job of explaining how everything works, but I can’t help think that if it requires this much instruction, it’s probably too complicated.
The cables are rated to withstand minus 40 degrees celcius. Alex Evans
That said, the default modes — once you’ve mastered what the light’s LED displays mean — offered all of the power outputs I required and I was never yearning to further customise the light’s modes.
Run time in top mode is 1 hour 45 minutes, matching the claimed time, which is impressive given the size of the battery and the light’s output. If you want more, a higher-powered battery is available.
The light’s thermal control system is pretty sensitive and unless you’re constantly moving, flicking between maximum and other modes or if it’s warm outside you might find that it dips from its max setting on occasion.
Lupine Wilma R7 bottom line
Best suited to helmet-mounted applications because of its rather narrow but especially focused beam, the Wilma R is a technical masterpiece with beautifully elegant design to boot. Unfortunately, its operation isn’t quite as fluid as its looks, but if tech is your thing then this light will tick boxes.
Lupine’s customer service is top notch, which is just as well given its high price, but at least you can buy in confidence knowing that any issues — if they arise — will be sorted with minimal fuss.
Just remember that you might want to invest in a second, bar mounted unit to get the most from your nights in the woods.
How we tested
Testing lights objectively is a tough task. While it’s entirely possible to measure the number of lumens a light emits, there are a lot more variables that dictate how much of that light illuminates the trail. The colour of the light, its beam pattern and lens type have as much effect as the outright power.
With that in mind, we haven’t measured the number of lumens each light emits for this test. Instead, we’ve assessed how the light performs by describing the beam pattern, its colour and overall performance, while also measuring run time on the most powerful setting.