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Brooks Cambium Ergonomic Grips

8
£54.99

VERDICT:

8
10
Wonderfully well-shaped grips that do a great job of supporting your hands, but the price hurts
Very comfortable shape
Unusually nice end plugs
Very firm
Expensive
Very firm
Weight: 
197g

At road.cc every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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Brooks Ergonomic Rubber Grips are a really comfortable shape that fills your hand very nicely. Their firmness is something you'll either love or hate, but nobody's going to be very impressed by their price. Nice end-plugs, though.

The shape feels like it's been very thoughtfully designed to nestle comfortably in your hands – or at least in my hands. (For reference, I usually take a Large or XL in gloves.) My partner Caroline, who's usually a size M, also found the shape worked, but felt anyone with smaller hands might find these grips too bulky.

The grips are an asymmetrical shape, slightly convex on the top to fill your palm, slightly concave underneath to give your fingertips a place to be. The top surface has a covering of fabric, rather like the top of one of Brooks' Cambium saddles. On the underside, ridges in the rubber help with grip.

Brooks Ergonomic Rubber Grips – 05.JPG

The rubber is quite firm so you might think that would make the grips less comfortable, but they're actually really supportive. Your hands aren't cosseted, but the shape is bang-on so they're still comfortable.

If you prefer a squishy grip, you probably won't get on well with these.

> How to make your bike more comfortable – check out our 14 tips

Overall, then, these are really comfortable grips thanks to the careful shaping and supportive rubber.

You do, however, have to set the position up quite carefully, so that they put your wrists at a comfortable angle. It's worth taking some time to tweak this: ride around for a while carrying the necessary 3mm hex and fiddle about as necessary.

Brooks Ergonomic Rubber Grips – 06.JPG

Fitting is a doddle. Loosen the clamp screw off a touch, slide the grip onto your bar, tighten the clamp. I remember what a gamechanger clamp-on grips were when they first appeared. No more messing about blowing grips on with compressed air, getting messy with Renthal Grip Glue or relying on bodges like hairspray or cold milky tea (the latter two worked poorly at best, and failed if your grips got wet).

2023 Brooks Cambium Ergonomic Grips - bar end plugs.jpg

Once the grips are on, you push the Brooks-logo end plugs into place. While it's hard to get too excited about end plugs, these are really rather nice, with an aluminium body and rubber flanges to grip the inside of the bar.

Rivals & value

Nice as they are, the Brooks Ergonomic Rubber Grips are mind-buggeringly expensive at £55. About the only grips I can find that are more expensive are also made by Brooks and have leather coverings rather than the rubber of these grips, or are Ergon units with built-in bar ends.

Speaking of Ergon, they're probably the best-regarded ergo grips, and its GP1s are not only cheaper at £36.99, but can also be found heavily discounted, which isn't generally the case with Brooks.

Conclusions

Well shaped and very comfortable, these are truly premium grips. If you ride a flat-bar bike that already has Brooks parts and accessories, then you're going to have to get a pair of these to go with your Cambium saddle and Scape bags. Yes, they're pricey, but that's just the way it is. Sorry, I don't make the rules.

If you're not a Brooks über-fan, but fancy treating yourself to some very good ergonomic groups, then these are certainly worth considering, but they're very much at the luxury end of the price range.

Verdict

Wonderfully well-shaped grips that do a great job of supporting your hands, but the price hurts

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road.cc test report

Make and model: Brooks Cambium Ergonomic Grips

Size tested: One size

Tell us what the product is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

They're handlebar grips for flat bars, providing you a comfy place to put your paws.

Brooks says:

Sporting details to perfectly match with our Cambium Saddles, Brooks Ergonomic Grips are durable and weatherproof rubber handlebar grips with a pleasant touch and feel. Nylon fabric and vertical grooves on the underside provide increased comfort and variable hand positions. The aluminium clamp allows the grip to be adjusted for a perfect fit, with the iconic Brooks rivet at the bar end added for an elegant finishing touch.

Ergonomic Comfort

Pressure-reducing ergonomic design reduces fatigue for feel and control.

Hard-wearing

Made with wear and tear-resistant materials.

Unique Premium Details

Special components, designs, materials and manufacturing techniques add unique character and timeless distinction.

Hard-wearing and comfortable.

For grip and control in all conditions.

Perfectly matching Brooks Cambium Saddles, Brooks Ergonomic Grips are durable and weatherproof rubber handlebar grips with a pleasant touch and feel, shaped for more comfort and variable hand positions.

IDEAL FOR

Commuting in the city

Travelling the globe

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Brooks lists:

Ergonomic shape

Varying sectional rubber density

Hard-wearing materials and details

Perfect match to the Cambium saddles

Thermoplastic rubber vulcanised with UV + Abrasion-Resistant Waterproof Nylon on the top and ergonomic grooves on the underside

Materials

Aluminium end-plug rivet

Aluminium clamp

Nylon fabric

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
9/10

Really nicely made.

Rate the product for performance:
 
10/10

Great shape that supports your hand really well.

Rate the product for durability:
 
9/10

A bit soon to tell, but they certainly feel bomb-proof.

Rate the product for comfort (if applicable)
 
10/10

One caveat: you have to like your grips on the firm side.

Rate the product for value:
 
2/10

Ergon's GP1s are £36.99 at rrp, and can usually be found discounted; £55 is a silly price for a pair of grips, however good they are.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Extremely well.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Fit & comfort.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

The price!

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

Ergon makes probably the best-regarded ergo grips, starting from £36.99 for the GP1s.

We don't review grips very often, but over on off.road.cc they've got a handy guide to the best mountain biking grips. Mountain bikers almost universally favour round grips because you move your hands around more on a mountain bike, but you might find some useful pointers there nevertheless.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Not if I were spending my own money.

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes, if they were wealthy.

Use this box to explain your overall score

Exceptional grips in shape, construction and details, but they lose points for being 55 quid.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 56  Height: 5ft 11in  Weight: 100kg

I usually ride: Scapin Style  My best bike is:

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Most days  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, touring, club rides, general fitness riding, mtb,

John has been writing about bikes and cycling for over 30 years since discovering that people were mug enough to pay him for it rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work.

He was heavily involved in the mountain bike boom of the late 1980s as a racer, team manager and race promoter, and that led to writing for Mountain Biking UK magazine shortly after its inception. He got the gig by phoning up the editor and telling him the magazine was rubbish and he could do better. Rather than telling him to get lost, MBUK editor Tym Manley called John’s bluff and the rest is history.

Since then he has worked on MTB Pro magazine and was editor of Maximum Mountain Bike and Australian Mountain Bike magazines, before switching to the web in 2000 to work for CyclingNews.com. Along with road.cc founder Tony Farrelly, John was on the launch team for BikeRadar.com and subsequently became editor in chief of Future Publishing’s group of cycling magazines and websites, including Cycling Plus, MBUK, What Mountain Bike and Procycling.

John has also written for Cyclist magazine, edited the BikeMagic website and was founding editor of TotalWomensCycling.com before handing over to someone far more representative of the site's main audience.

He joined road.cc in 2013. He lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.

Add new comment

6 comments

Avatar
KDee | 11 months ago
0 likes

Am I alone in not getting ergonomic grips? Literally comfortable (allegedly...I think they feel weird, and look a bit daft) in one position, and one position only.

Avatar
hawkinspeter replied to KDee | 11 months ago
1 like
KDee wrote:

Am I alone in not getting ergonomic grips? Literally comfortable (allegedly...I think they feel weird, and look a bit daft) in one position, and one position only.

No, there's literally several of us

Avatar
brooksby replied to hawkinspeter | 11 months ago
0 likes

My main bike has Ergon GP-4 grips/bar ends.  Really comfortable.

Avatar
KDee replied to brooksby | 11 months ago
0 likes

I sold my full-sus trail bike last year. Buyer sent me a photo a few days later, apologising for fitting a pair of those to it...I was mortified 

I know Ergon do some more traditionally shapped grips. Shall take a look at what's available.

Avatar
brooksby replied to KDee | 11 months ago
0 likes
KDee wrote:

I sold my full-sus trail bike last year. Buyer sent me a photo a few days later, apologising for fitting a pair of those to it...I was mortified 

I know Ergon do some more traditionally shapped grips. Shall take a look at what's available.

Different tastes, I guess  3

Avatar
KDee replied to hawkinspeter | 11 months ago
0 likes

Excellent! I have a pair on my new commuter. I Just do not get on with them at all. Need to find something to replace them, something a little squishy to take the buzz out of the Dutch clinkers.

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