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The Repente Quasar saddle is light, very comfortable (given its lack of padding) and its flat profile is perfect for racier riding. It's not the most affordable seat out there, but given its spec and the fact it's handmade in Italy, it's very competitively priced against the competition. It's only available in one width, mind.
If you like to ride hard and fast, with your saddle high and handlebar low, then you're probably the type of rider who is interested in a flat saddle. Flat is good for more aggressive riding, where you don't have to worry too much about padding thickness because most of your weight is going to be on the front end anyway.
That's precisely the kind of setup I employ on my rides – partly because I like to ride fast, and partly because I am long legged and need the seatpost pretty high anyway. Repente's Quasar is well suited to this kind of riding, but unlike some racier saddles, which can be stiff and uncompromising, it's actually very comfortable – good enough, even, for endurance riding.
The usual caveat applies, of course: as with any saddle review, when it comes to comfort it's entirely subjective – what I find comfortable might, to you, feel like sitting on a bed of nails, or what is uncomfortable for me might make you feel like you're floating on a cushion of air.
Here, on the top side the flat surface consists of a water-based microfibre and is padded with polyurethane. The PA12 (nylon polymer) shell is reinforced with long carbon fibres, which Repente says is 'a system developed to increase the resistance and non-deformability of the structure'.
Unlike the more expensive Repente Prime saddle which has carbon fibre rails, the Quasar's are 304-hardened stainless steel. They have a round profile, so will fit a variety of seatpost clamps easily.
Its 260mm length is shorter than most standard saddles, but it's not super short, so you do get a bit more room to move around on than 'short' nose saddles. It only comes in one width, though, 142mm.
Despite the Quasar having less exotic stainless steel rails rather than carbon fibre, Repente has managed to keep the weight down to an impressive 170g. Saddles of a similar weight tend to be vastly more expensive – for instance, the Selle Italia Flite Boost Kit Carbonio saddle I tested almost a year ago weighs 182g and costs a rather significant £165 more.
For £64.50 more, Repente's own Prime saddle features carbon rails and an RLS system that allows you to change the cover. It offers a similar amount of comfort, but you only gain a 4g advantage over the Quasar. It's hardly worth it really.
For £24.99 more, the Selle San Marco Aspide Short Open-Fit Racing saddle (phew) has a similar flat design with an open channel, though you do get the advantage of two different widths to choose from. It's 20g heavier, though.
Another shorty option is the Giant Fleet SLR, which is £29.99 more than the Quasar, and again it's slightly heavier at 184g.
When I first checked out the saddle before fitting, I was impressed by its low weight and just how comfortable it looks for such a racy model with a minimal amount of padding. The rear section is quite generous, and though the cutout pressure relief channel is wide, it's more subtle than some examples out there.
I was also surprised at just how much flex there is in the shell. Hold your fingers over the top with your thumb under the rails and you can easily squeeze the shell to the point that it's almost touching the rails. It really flexes, and on the road this translates into a high level of comfort. It doesn't make you bob about when you're pushing hard, but it does appear to soak up most road imperfections.
At the end of several 50-mile-plus rides, I was amazed at just how fresh I felt in the bum department. I always get a sore backside on longer rides on account of having very pronounced sit bones and little of my own natural padding. I didn't have numbness (the cutout certainly helps here) and I didn't notice any chafing either.
I can't say whether it's as efficient when putting power to the pedals as a stiffer saddle, but I can tell you that being comfortable for longer means I can maintain my pedalling ability for longer.
Both sides of the cutout at the rear have a beautiful looking grippy texture, which helps to keep you locked in place, and the Italian flag at the end is the icing on a very premium cake.
Though the nose isn't as short as some, it certainly doesn't get in the way when you're really tucked into a low aero position.
Overall, this is a fabulous saddle for the money and one I would happily recommend. There are plenty of good saddles at a lower price point, but the Repente Quasar can't be beaten when it comes to price per gram; you'll have to pay a lot more to get close to its 170g mark.
That it's also very comfortable for even long rides, good looking, and has the cachet of being handmade in Italy, is all the more reason to buy one.
Racy saddle that's very comfortable and exceptionally light for the price
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Repente Quasar saddle
Size tested: 260x142mm
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?
It's for riders who sit in a racy position and want to feel comfortable for many miles. It's also a very cost effective way of losing grams on your bike.
Repente says: 'Top-class materials and technologies for a saddle that weighs less than 170 grams, designed and developed by Repente on the basis of feedback from professional athletes and the many enthusiasts who use Repente saddles on and off the road. The first saddle by the Italian brand to have a steel rather than a carbon fibre rail.
"Quasar stands out both for the gritty appeal of its design and for its excellent cost/effectiveness. Painstaking care has been applied to every single detail - both in the design phase and in the product manufacturing process, all exquisitely Italian-made in the best Repente tradition.
'Design, comfort and functionality come together in Quasar - to meet the needs of both racers and amateur cyclists."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Repente lists these features:
The saddle shape is characterised by a 142mm "flat" design seat and central opening, integrated in a wide channel designed to relieve perineal pressure.
The comfortably sized rear support surface has been modelled according to anatomical and ergonomic requirements - a typical feature of all Repente saddles. The "close fit" effect produced by this particular shape makes the seat comfortable without having to use thick layers of padding and allows users to immediately find their most effective riding position.
The shell is made of PA12 reinforced with long carbon fibres (LCF technology), the same solution adopted by Repente to increase the strength of its Prime 2.0, Spyd 2.0 and Artax GL models.
The padding is in polyurethane, while water-based non-slip polyurethane microfibre has been chosen for the cover.
The rail is made of Aisi Stainless Steel, a type of steel with highly advanced mechanical properties. Repente has further strengthened it by submitting it to a special process called Shot 304, which hardens the metal surface and makes it more resistant.
And this spec:
COATING Water-based microfiber
SHELL PA12 Long Carbon Fiber (LCF)
RAIL Aisi Stainless Steel - Shot 304
DIMENSIONS 260 mm (10.24 in) x 142 mm (5.59 in)
WEIGHT (+/- 5%) 170 g (5.99 oz)
Nicely built (and bonus points: it's handmade in Italy).
Stiff when you need it, but flexible enough to offer comfort for your sit bones. Only available in one width though.
No issues here after hundreds of miles testing.
Very light for the price.
Plenty of flexibility in the shell to absorb road bumps and vibration mean you can use this on endurance rides.
Not the cheapest saddle out there, but price per gram is unbeatable.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
The Repente Quasar is firm but very comfortable, which makes it great for extended periods of being low on the bars without discomfort.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Very comfortable and light.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
Selle's San Marco Aspide Short Open-Fit Racing saddle is more expensive and 20g heavier, but you do get more width options. Giant's Fleet SLR, which is £29.99 more than the Quasar, is again slightly heavier at 184g.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
The Repente Quasar saddle is pretty easy to recommend if you want to improve the comfort of your (admittedly racier) rides, lose some unwanted weight off your bike and do so for relatively little money. It's also a great-looking saddle with the cachet of being handmade in Italy, if that matters to you (it does to me).
About the tester
I usually ride: Steel audax bike My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, touring, club rides, sportives,