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Reserve 25/GR Gravel Wheelset review

A stiff and speedy gravel wheelset

Our rating 
3.5 out of 5 star rating 3.5
GBP £1,899.00 RRP | USD $1,599.00 | EUR €1,799.00
Reserve 25/GR Gravel Wheelset

Our review

If speed is your friend, this is a wheel that lives to deliver
Pros: Lightweight; rapid freehub; great at speed
Cons: Fragile tape; can feel overly stiff at slower speeds
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The Reserve 25GR builds on the brand’s previous gravel designs to be compatible with higher-volume gravel tyres and even more durable in the face of the demands of harsher terrain.

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The Reserve brand has seen plenty of collaboration with Santa Cruz and Cervélo (it’s owned by the same parent company), so there’s plenty of know-how to draw upon when it comes to off-road prowess and speed.

This wheelset excels when ridden at faster speeds, indicating it’s probably best suited to racers, or those who don’t need an abundance of compliance.

Reserve 25/GR details and specifications

Reserve 25/GR Gravel Wheelset
The Reserve 25/GR wheelset rim features a mini-hook design.
Russell Burton / Our Media

The Reserve 25/GR wheelset prioritises low weight over anything else – the 18mm-deep carbon rim builds in nothing in the way of aerodynamics.

The slender rim has a generous 25mm internal width to handle large-sized gravel tyres. At 1,360g a pair, they are amongst the lightest gravel wheels you’ll find.

Reserve says the 25/GR is “engineered to keep you faster for longer”. As part of that promise, it says it uses externally reinforced spoke holes to strengthen the area around the spoke nipple without adding extra weight.

Reserve 25/GR Gravel Wheelset
Applying your own rim tape doesn’t always result in the best finish.
Russell Burton / Our Media

It also claims the offset spoke holes allow the tyre to push past the bead bumps for easier seating of tubeless tyres.

Reserve’s lightweight rim is matched to a set of DT Swiss 350 hubs.

DT Swiss’ star ratchet freehub is well-regarded for its performance and reliability, and you get a fast six-degree angle of engagement here.

Reserve 25/GR Gravel Wheelset
The rims are very shallow, contributing to their low weight.
Russell Burton / Our Media

You can upgrade to a set of Industry 9 Torch hubs for an extra $300.

Rim tape is included, but doesn’t come pre-installed.

Reserve backs up the 25/GR wheelset with a lifetime warranty and ‘no-fault’ crash replacement service.

Reserve 25/GR ride impressions

Reserve 25/GR Gravel Wheelset
The Industry Nine hubs (pictured) are an optional upgrade.
Russell Burton / Our Media

Tyre installation could have been easier.

The supplied rim tape is thin, didn’t stick well and had a tendency to bubble. Although my tape-laying technique could likely be improved, I’d have preferred a better experience.

There was also an issue with one of the valves, which initially leaked no matter what I tried.

Customer service replaced it efficiently, but it’s worth noting the Filmore valve specced with this wheel costs £50 should you need to buy a new one.

Reserve 25/GR Gravel Wheelset
These cost $300 more than the standard DT Swiss 350 hubs.
Russell Burton / Our Media

It’s designed to prevent clogging and get air in quicker. It makes life easier, and my test tyre seated well with a large volume, giving a good contact area with no noticeable effect on drag.

These are interesting wheels that live up to their mission of keeping you faster for longer. Off-road, they seem to be a tiny bit under-employed at low speed and can feel on the harsh side.

Conversely, they positively leapt into life the faster I rode.

Reserve 25/GR Gravel Wheelset
I tested the wheelset with an XDR freehub body, but a Shimano HG version is also available.
Russell Burton / Our Media

The 25GR wheelset took the edge off the buzz, but arguably didn’t feel that inspired when ridden steadily.

However, once you put the power down, they sit up and pay attention, absorbing vibration and bumps better, tracking more tightly, enabling you to hold your line, and generally encouraging you to relax and enjoy the speed you’ve earned.

On the road, the wheels are smooth with immediate pick-up out of corners and efficient stroke engagement.

Reserve 25/GR Gravel Wheelset
The 25/GR wheelset feels fast and efficient when speed is picked up.
Russell Burton / Our Media

That efficiency of engagement also translates off-road, and even on stony, technical climbs I never found myself playing catch-up and stalling on power engagement.

Thanks to their apparent love of speed, the Reserve 25GRs also keep a straight line on descents, translating to a supple feel for the ground (in tandem with quality tyres).

For some who prefer quieter wheelsets, the noisy freehub may prove a downside, although there are even noisier options.

Reserve 25/GR bottom line

Reserve 25/GR Gravel Wheelset
This wheelset excels for shorter, faster rides.
Russell Burton / Our Media

Over longer, easy-pace rides, the Reserve 25/GR is a competent but not outstanding wheelset. The stiffness that makes these wheels so playful can be a little wearing over the long haul.

But for faster-paced, shorter distances, they deliver a lot of fun. They give the sense of urging you on, which makes riding hard all the more rewarding, delivering a lively spring when you keep the speed high.

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In all, the 25/GRs are light, lively and fast wheels best reserved for racers.

Product Specifications


Price EUR €1799.00GBP £1899.00USD $1599.00
Weight 1,360g (700c) – including valves and tapes
Brand Reserve


Features Weight: 618g Front, 742g Rear
Engagement (deg): 6
External width: 30mm
Brake type Disc
Hubs DT Swiss 350
Rim depth 18mm
Rim internal width 24.5mm
Rim material Carbon
Spoke count 24 front, 24 rear
Wheel size 29in/700c