The aim with Wilier’s new Cento10 Air was to improve on the aero advantages of the previous model, while adding a layer of comfort from its SR all-rounder.
At 990g, the frame sinks below the 1kg watermark, which is impressive for a wind-cheating design. To reduce weight, Wilier has worked on the details – metal inserts have been simplified, and it’s switched to Shimano’s direct-mount brake standard with the bonus of improved tyre clearances, being able to take 28mm rubber.
The biggest aero gain comes from the one-piece Alabarda bar-stem. This integrates all the cables through the head tube, with the cables sitting forward of the D-shaped steerer tube before passing either side. The stem sits inline with the horizontal bar, reducing frontal area. The stem is set at 10.3 degrees (standard is 6 degrees), which puts the bar 1.8cm lower. Under the stem is a hollow slot sized to fit a Di2 control box and threaded inserts for a mount for a head unit of your choice.
We were impressed with the smoothness of the ride, for a race bike, and the front end provided a great balance between comfort and stiffness. Out of the saddle honking up a climb, the bar has just enough give, yet when you’re down in the drops there’s plenty of controlled buzz-killing compliance.
The Wilier Triestina Cento10 Air is equipped with Shimano’s 9100 Dura-Ace. The whole system feels sharp, the brake actuation comes in earlier and there’s more definition when shifting. The rear mech switches to the Shadow design from mountain bikes, which gives it a lower profile. In all but the lowest sprockets the mech sits inside the outer edge of the chainstays, offering better protection should you crash.
The brakes are perhaps the best standard callipers we’ve tried to date. The carbon Mavic Cosmic wheels are a new-for-2017 shape, with a sculpted, blunted profile with a wider 17mm internal diameter. They feel smooth, with a quick pick-up at the freehub, and not overly stiff. At 1,650g a pair for a 45mm-deep set of wheels they’re suitably light, too.
We aren’t enamoured with Exalith brake tracks – when operating perfectly you get a satisfying buzz, but this can change into an ear-piercing screech when making harder efforts.
We wouldn’t expect to praise an aero bike with terms like 'nimble', 'agile' and 'fast handling', but the Cento10 is all of those things. The short (407mm) stays and wheelbase imbue it with far more of a fun factor than your average head-down-power-on aero race bike.
Wilier Triestina Cento10 Air specification
• Weight: 7.5kg (58cm)
• Frame: Carbon
• Fork: Carbon
• Gears: Shimano Dura-Ace 9100, 50/34, 11-28
• Brakes: Shimano Dura-Ace 9100
• Wheels: Mavic Cosmic Pro Carbon Exalith
• Tyres: 25mm Mavic Yksion Pro Powerlink and Powergrip
• Bar/Stem: Alabarda one-piece carbon
• Seatpost: Ritchey carbon aero
• Saddle: Astute Star