Look’s ubiquitous KéO road pedal receives a significant update in the new KéO 2 Max, with a wider composite body and co-moulded stainless steel upper plate that lends a more solid feel underfoot and less out-of-plane rocking compared to the original KéO.
The stainless steel plate also yields smoother rotational float than before plus seemingly more resistance to long-term body wear – a good thing considering they’re not replaceable.
Just 4.5 degrees of lateral movement is provided by the included grey KéO Grip cleats but optional red cleats double that figure for those who need it. Fully fixed cleats are available too.
When it comes for your mid-ride cafe stop, soft rubber pads on the front and back of the cleats help prevent embarrassing spills on slick floors.
However, they do wear pretty quickly if you spend too much time ambling about, in contrast to Shimano’s SPD-SL cleat which uses a longer lasting compound.
One other note about the cleats: keep them clean and be mindful of wear. Our KéO testers ran nice and quietly for their first few hard weeks but eventually started to develop a subtle squeak under hard pedaling load (or when we ran a year-old set of KéO cleats).
Clean them thoroughly and the din mostly goes away but it’s still disappointing that we should have to do that sort of thing when other pedal designs run silent in nearly all conditions.
Otherwise, everything that was good about the first KéO design thankfully carries over. Entry and exit are intuitive and smooth, the release tension has plenty of adjustment range and the easy-to-service cartridge-style chromoly axle assemblies rotate on three silky bearings each.
The new KéO 2 Max axles also have a pedal washer-friendly 2mm of additional threading for riders who need to run a wider stance.
Our base-level test pedals cost just US$179.99 but weigh only 259g per pair – a modest 65g more than last year’s pricey KéO Carbon Titanium at less than half their cost.
For now, just three KéO 2 Max models are available and none has titanium spindles but we expect that option will be added soon enough to satisfy the weight weenies.