The latest aero wheels from DT Swiss are a lot more versatile and easy to live with than their 65mm depth would suggest.
For most riding we tend to suggest 50mm as the maximum depth you can run before handling in gusty conditions becomes more of a hindrance to enjoyment than the potential aero enhancement. DT Swiss is the latest to push the acceptable handling envelope further into the realms of obvious speed increase.
With a width of 25mm just below the 24mm brake track, the new RRC 65 carbon clincher rim isn’t anywhere near as prominently bulged as the latest corpulent hoops from Zipp, ENVE, Easton, Bontrager and so on. That means they do shunt more noticeably in crosswinds and gate gaps, but it’s still a constant, predictable, side pressure rather than a sudden unstable snatch.
There’s less of a sense of being sucked forward by the wheels in sidewinds too. The flipside is that there is less of an unsettling sensation of ‘lift’ as you bank into a turn at speed, and they feel particularly clean and fast in calmer/block headwind situations.
The rim’s 17mm internal width broadens 25mm tyres, creating a profile that handles beautifully, and they’re supplied with valves and taped ready for tubeless use. Even with conventional tubes the ride feel is excellent, with a real sense of float over rough sections and holes that increases the faster you go.
That doesn’t mean they lack precision though, with DT Swiss’s own RWS (Ratchet Wheel-mounting System) levers letting you crank up the lightweight titanium-shafted skewers to flatter the tight, straight-pull lacing of the super-clean DiCut hubs. The ceramic bearings run with a superb smoothness and sustain speed well.
The 36-tooth ratchet system engages promptly and positively out of corners, keeping them aggressive even on twisty, technical roads. While they’re slightly heavier than the obvious competition at 1,670g (760g front, 910g rear) their clean, eager and efficient feel meant we never felt held back on climbs.
The supplied SwissStop Black Prince EVO brake pads have a low profile, which removes any worries about the wider rim in tighter frames. Braking is predictable in wet and dry too, if not spectacularly powerful or offering you that much feedback.