Vittoria Qurano 46 Graphene wheels review
Ever ridden a pair of wheels with Nobel prize-winning ingredients? Neither had we until now. While they look like other carbon road wheels, beneath the surface lies a layer of Graphene – ‘G+’ in Vittoria-speak – which is being touted as the next wonder material.
It’s a transparent, super-electrical conductor which cools rapidly, is 150 times stronger than steel but 20 per cent more elastic. All this in something that’s a single layer of carbon atoms thick, which is unfathomably thin compared to the carbon sheets sandwiching it.
Vittoria claims the graphene makes the Quranos stronger and laterally stiffer, with greater impact resistance, but also lighter and with improved heat dissipation, and still more compliant. And given graphene’s properties, these claims are entirely feasible.
Wide, rounded profile
The 42mm-deep front rim and 46mm-deep asymmetric rear rim are 23mm wide externally. Their profile is wide and rounded, and they spin on Vittoria-designed hubs with an 82mm drive side flange, and the clever SwitchIT freehub, which allows tool-free freehub body removal with the cassette in place. Our wheels came in at 1344g, plus another 122g for the skewers.
They’re as solid as they come
With 25mm Vittoria Corsa SC tubulars fitted, we found a wheelset that couldn’t help itself. Tubulars always give a plush feel, but even at high pressures, the Quranos have a very forgiving ride. Rising from the saddle to crest a hill incites a surge of acceleration, and the low rotational mass makes attacking digs, sprints and punching out of corners extremely rapid indeed. They’re as solid as they come, with a width that gives confident handling stability.
Strong crosswind performance, excellent braking
The shallower front rim helps keep the steering light, and though they don’t lead the class for crosswind performance, they’re well above average, and braking is excellent. In the dry, the brakes bite positively, and progressively. In the wet it takes a fraction longer to begin stopping, but these are among the best-stopping carbon wheels we’ve tested.
They’re supplied with bags, brake pads, valve extenders and a wheel tool, and though the tubular version was first to be released, the range now consists of 46, 60 and 84 tubulars, plus 30C, 46C and 60C carbon clinchers. We’d expect the clinchers to cost a little more, but with the tubular Quranos proving superb value, the clinchers could give the big boys a fright.