A premium SPD pedal built with a carbon fibre pedal body, the Look X-Track Race Carbon pedal is a tier above the French brand’s X-Track and X-Track Race models.
Built for cross-country mountain bike racing, a more square shape gives an increased contact area, supposedly to improve power transfer.
Look X-Track Race Carbon specifications and details
With a more squared-off appearance than comparable SPD pedals from the likes of Shimano and Ritchey, the Look X-Track Race Carbon features a double-sided mechanism with adjustable release and entry tension.
The carbon fibre pedal body extends over the chromoly spindle towards the crank. Quality Torx screws secure the mechanism, which features entry and release spring tension adjustment.
You can service the X-Track pedals, though you will need a specialist tool to remove the end cap from the outer edge of the pedal in order to take the axle off the pedal body.
Look X-Track Race Carbon performance
Quick to set up with an adjustable entry and release tension mechanism via an Allen bolt, the X-Track Race Carbon pedals are secured to the crank using an 8mm Allen key.
Put a foot down, and it’s almost like there’s a magnet drawing you into the mechanism. You’re secured before you even have to consciously think about it. It’s especially handy when starting off on steep inclines or rough surfaces.
Unlike other gravel or mountain bike pedals, this performance-oriented option includes a standard cleat, rather than the easy-release option (available separately for £14 / €15 / $17).
Usually, I’d prefer an easy-release cleat, but I didn’t find a huge amount of difference here, and of course you can wind up the pedal-release tension for a more secure fit.
Mud clearance seemed to be good too, stamping straight into the mechanism even with mud-clogged cleats. Cyclocross racers take note.
One thing I did notice on unrideable hike-a-bike sections was that the carbon edge of the pedal body is quite sharp, which I also found a few years ago with Shimano XTR SPD pedals.
If you’re more of an explorer than a racer, these probably aren’t for you, for the sake of avoiding some nasty ankle scrapes.
Look claims these carbon fibre pedals are ‘extremely light’, but they’re heavier than the rival pedals I tested from Time, Ritchey and Crankbrothers.
Carbon fibre construction might seem fancy, but it only shaves off 15g per pair compared to the X-Track Race model.
On the plus side, they are fully serviceable, once you have the tool (not included) to release the outer plastic cap.
LOOK X-Track Race Carbon bottom line
The X-Track Race Carbon pedals gave very mixed results, with fantastically easy engagement and serviceability at the cost of extra weight and cost.
Consider the composite body model of the X-Track Race (£73 / €72 / $90) for this performance at a more wallet-friendly price point.
How we tested
Gravel fire roads, dusty singletrack, back lanes and rocky bridleways; the best gravel bike pedals need to be able to cope with a wide variety of terrain. Therefore, we tested the pedals in a range of scenarios representative of off-road riding in the UK.
We specifically paid close attention to the ease of clipping in and out, how secure the mechanism felt and the level of support offered by the platform, as well as how serviceable each set would be.
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- LOOK X-Track Race Carbon review
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