WTB Launches CZR Carbon Wheelset
BELLINGHAM, WASHINGTON – August 17, 2021 – WTB now offers complete carbon wheels that are available in two purpose-built gravel and mountain configurations. Fast and light CZR i23 gravel wheels are designed to minimize weight and maximize compliance on rough gravel roads, while CZR i30 are aggressive trail and enduro wheels built tough to endure whatever lies in their path. While the two wheels were individually designed for specific usages at different ends of the riding spectrum, the common goal behind both was creating high-performance carbon wheels that are equal parts lightweight and dependable.
Gravel-eating CZR i23 wheels are designed to minimize weight while blending stiffness and compliance to maximize power transfer and increase comfort during the longest rides of the year. Carbon thickness was fine-tuned throughout the CZR i23 rim to reduce weight, improve vertical compliance, reduce rider fatigue and increase overall comfort. Additional carbon thickness around each spoke bed improves overall wheel strength and durability while also minimizing weight in areas where less strength, and therefore material, is needed. CZR i23 rims feature a 24mm section depth to improve radial stiffness and maximize energy transfer without being affected by crosswinds like other wheels with deeper profiles.
All CZR i23 gravel wheels are built with winged Pillar racing spokes that are cold forged into an aerodynamic shape that reduces drag at the trailing end of each spoke. As a result, winged spokes improve overall efficiency while still retaining the gram-conscious weights of traditional bladed spokes. CZR i23 wheels are available in 24-hole or 28-hole spoke configurations with front wheels starting at 620g and rears at 775g (all weights include TCS tubeless tape, Solid Strip and valve because we believe wheels should be weighed ready-to-ride).
Carbon wheelsets are getting lighter by the day and there are plenty of ultralight mountain wheels out there to test those limits, but CZR i30 wheels weren’t designed to be the lightest. CZR i30 wheels were designed to handle it all, which is why they feature a strategically fortified carbon layup, reinforced spoke beds, and are hand-built using double-butted spokes, brass nipples and our high-engagement Frequency hubs that use top-tier bearings and oversized freehub seals to establish themselves as wheels that simply won’t quit. CZR i30 wheels are 28-hole with front wheels weighing in at 878g, and rears starting at 1026g.
While CZR i23 and CZR i30 wheels have different intended uses, they share some features that improve the performance and durability of any carbon wheel. They both utilize WTB’s unique Solid Strip, which is a durable nylon strip that lies between the rim and tubeless tape to prevent tubeless tape from pushing into the spoke holes and ensures a smooth interface between the tire and rim. The smooth surface makes it easier to mount a tire by preventing air from escaping around the bead at each indent during inflation. Solid Strip also protects the airtight system from puncture in the case of a broken spoke. TCS tubeless dependability, asymmetrical rim offset, and Solid Strip all do their part in producing the most reliable carbon wheels on the market.
The world’s best carbon rims are paired to our high-quality Frequency hubs that were designed in-house to further improve the performance and dependability of our complete CZR wheels. Frequency hubs feature a low-drag, 6-pawl design that alternates contact between two sets of 3-pawl groupings to provide a responsive 5 degrees of freehub engagement. Designing a lightweight hub that provides quick engagement and spins away with a pleasing sound is relatively easy, but ensuring it survives through countless seasons of adverse conditions is the real challenge. Two years of testing and development through sloppy Pacific Northwest winters and dry California summers allowed us to fine-tune the design with oversized freehub seals that drastically improve weatherproofing.
CZR i23 and CZR i30 wheels are assembled with hub pawl springs of different strengths to further tailor them towards their gravel and mountain uses. Frequency hubs laced to CZR i23 wheels feature lightweight pawl springs that minimize drag and therefore improve efficiency for drop bar usage. CZR i30 wheels feature heavy-duty pawl springs that engage with greater force to counteract the additional torque of intermittent and steep mountain riding. Both spring options are compatible across all Frequency hubs and a Light Pawl-Spring Kit is available at WTB.com for CZR i30 riders who prefer a quieter hub with lighter pawl engagement.
The differentiator between carbon wheels is quickly becoming how well a company stands behind them. We believe in ours enough to offer our Ride With Confidence Guarantee on all CZR carbon rims and wheels. If you break a CZR while riding, we’ll send you a replacement for free. No exceptions. Didn’t see that sharp rock until you were mid-air? Found yourself testing your gravel bike on some downhill tracks? As long as you’re the original owner and were riding your bike when it happened, we’ll replace it for free. Check out WTB.com for the complete details of our Ride With Confidence Guarantee.
All CZR front wheels have an MSRP of $749.95, while rear wheels are $849.95. CZR wheels are currently available at WTB.com but will also be available at your favorite local retailers in months ahead. Wheels will be available at retailers in Europe by late September.