Most cyclists are familiar with the Roval name as it relates to Specialized bikes, which makes sense since the French brand was acquired by the American bike company quite a few years ago. However, Roval has been looking to carve out a niche of its own, hoping enthusiasts can see past its relationship as OEM wheels for Specialized, and find their way onto other premium bikes.
As a result, Roval’s new found autonomy has been spearheaded with the arrival of a new range of wheels that also include a lifetime warranty and a no-fault crash replacement program to bolster sales.
Roval’s latest offering is a new series of gravel specific wheelsets aptly called Terra.
To create the Terra series, Roval says its engineers carefully balanced a wide range of gravel riders’ needs to develop wheels with exceptional durability, class-leading weights, everyday functionality and uncompromising performance.
To wit, “leveraging decades of experience in composite wheel design and manufacture, we brought the Terra line to life. Designed as a system Terra wheels integrate lightweight carbon fiber rims with dependable DT Swiss hub internals and spokes. Terra wheels feature generous, modern internal widths – 25mm and 30mm(!) respectively, allowing riders to run a broad selection of widths, AND perform reliably over a huge range of tire pressures,” says Roval.
According to Roval, developing the Terra line presented new challenges for its engineers, who they say worked tirelessly to create wheels that were not only lightweight, but possessed excellent comfort and controllability that even surpassed the standards of many MTB wheels.
In the end, Roval says the Terra wheel series underwent 20 iterations of carbon fiber layup and design before reaching the final result, which were suitable for tackling the rigors drop-bar riding along the gravel, but again with the strength and durability of MTB wheels.
Roval says, the 25mm inner width of the Terra CLX and CL can safely accommodate tires from 28mm to 42mm wide, at whatever pressure the rider desires, while the Terra CLX EVO measures a massive 30mm between the rim walls, making them wider than any other road wheel on the market and allowing for the use of tires up to a whopping 55mm wide. Moreover, since both rims are sized to optimize tire volume, if there’s enough room for clearance, these wheelsets will allow riders to run just about any tire size they please.
Additionally, now that hookless rim technology has really come to the fore with composite rims, Roval chose this system to ensure precise tire mounting. This meant adding a “step” to its Terra wheels after an already complex carbon fiber layup process. But again, this extra step allows the wheels to accommodate just about any size tire at just about any pressure.
The Terra wheelsets also features DT Swiss’ new 180EXP internals, offering lighter weight, greater stiffness and more reliable engagement. Roval says it chose the DT Swiss internals for the reliability and serviceability of the company’s Star Ratchet system, which are housed in Roval’s own AFD hubs, paired with DT Aerolite t-head spokes in a 2:1 lacing pattern for balanced spoke tension and a stronger overall wheel system.
Lastly, at 1296 grams, the Terra CLX offers an unsurpassed strength-to-weight ratio for a wheelset in its class, while its 25mm internal rim width again allows riders to choose from a broad range of tire widths.
In the case of the Terra CLX EVO, its massive 30mm inner width makes it a perfect choice for riders looking to run seriously large tires, without gaining a significant weight penalty.
You can find out more about the Terra wheelsets by visiting Roval’s website here.
Terra Key Points:
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