One of the foremost trends in road cycling (and mountain biking) is for wider tyres and rims. To that end, Zipp has just announced a new range of NSW Carbon Clincher Tubeless wheels with an updated rim profile measuring 19mm internally, optimised around 25mm tyres.
Zipp’s NSW range is it’s top-end offering, packing in all its latest know-how when it comes to carbon manufacturing and aerodynamic design. There are three wheels to choose from; 303 (45mm rim depth), 404 (58mm) and 808 (82mm) covering the wide range of road race and time trial applications.
As well as growing in width, Zipp says it has entirely redesigned the rim shape to seamlessly integrate with the wider tyres it intends the rims to be used with.
The rims are designed to be compatible with both regular clincher and tubeless tyres. It recently launched its first tubeless-specific tyre and is the latest brand to join the growing tubeless movement. The wheels ship with tubeless tape and valves already installed.
Aside from the new rims, there are the same Cognition hubs with a freehub employing magnets to reduce drag when coasting. There’s an SRAM XDR freehub option for using with a 10-42t cassette. It’s also worth remembering that these NSW wheels are manufactured in the US, at the company’s Indianapolis base, when you're looking at the prices below.
The 303 NSW wheelset weighs a claimed 1,500g, the 404 NSW 1,620g, and each wheelsets costs £2,678. The 808 NSW weigh 1,855g and cost £2,857.
Zipp’s lower-tier Firecrest range will continue to use a narrow rim profile (17mm) but it has managed to shave a bit of weight of the 303, 404 and 808 wheelsets.
Zipp says it has also revised the Firecrest rim profile to improve the aero performance, while ShowStopper textured brake track improves rim brake performance in all weather conditions.
The Firecrest wheels are quite a bit more affordable than the NSW wheels. The 303 Firecrest and 404 Firecrest weigh 1,480g and 1,615 respectively and cost £1,986, while the 808 Firecrest come in at 1,830g and cost £2,321.
All wheels are available from June onwards. More details at www.zipp.com
David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.