Mavic's AllRoad range, much like the gravel market itself, is under expansion, with new wheels, tyres and a clothing range all designed to expand the playground of the usual road bike.
Although the AlllRoad products aren't necessarily about racing, there's still a focus on performance.
Wheels and tyres
Mavic's AllRoad tyres are designed to work well in a range of conditions, but were designed specifically to work with the wheels. Mavic calls this the Wheel Tyre System (WTS). When you buy the wheels, you get the appropriate tyres with them.
The AllRoad range includes four wheel models, three price points, two wheel sizes and three tyre options. Here's the rundown.
The Ksyrium Pro Disc AllRoad wheel, which launched in 2016, has had a subtle update and is now called the AllRoad Pro WTS.
The rim has a 22mm internal width to support the new 30mm, 35mm and 40mm tyres from Mavic, though it will take up to 700x45c tyres on its hookless alloy rim. This is up from 19mm on the originals from 2016.
The rim has Mavic's ISM4D milling, where the rim material between the spoke holes is machined away to save weight where it's not needed, and the spoke holes are drilled with Mavic's Fore Drilling method.
This method sees a tunnel formed on the lower bridge of the rim into which a thread is cut. This means that the outer rim bed has no holes and thus no rim tape is needed to go tubeless. This is the basis of the UST tubeless system.
Mavic's Zicral alloy spokes are used to keep weight low, though they do require a specific tool to adjust tension.
Virtually every axle standard is supported front and rear. Shimano and SRAM's XD driver freehubs are available, and currently both six-bolt and centerlock disc interfaces are supported, though six-bolt will be dropped in a running change over the next year. Mavic's ID360 freehub design is said to give a 9 degree engagement angle.
As the wheels are sold as a Wheel Tyre System, you'll be able to choose either its 30mm or 40mm tyres. A 35c tyre is also in the works.
- £859 / €999 / $1,099
AllRoad Elite UST
The AllRoad Elite UST has just become available. This features the same rim and tyre options as the AllRoad Pro, to keep the rolling weight low.
A slightly cheaper hub is used to keep the cost lower, though it has the same compatibility options, and the same fast pick-up freehub technology.
Steel spokes are used to further lower the price, but the Fore Drilling tech remains, maintaining full the UST technology in the rim.
The AllRoad Elite will be offered with a rim brake option for slightly less money, for those who still require them on adventure bikes and CX bikes.
- £659 / €749 / $799
AllRoad Elite Road+
This is a new 650b wheelset for riders looking to run larger volume tyres on their gravel bikes. Currently Mavic doesn't offer a tyre to go with the wheel, but it's on its way.
The rim has an internal width of 25mm, designed primarily around 45mm tyres, giving a similar outside diameter to a 70x30mm tyre.
The rim is very similar to that found on the AllRoad Elite and Pro, with the ISM4D milling, but the rim needs taping before going tubeless otherwise the Fore Drilling technique used on the rim would make it a touch too harsh because the rim needs to be stiffer. As such, it has a more traditional spoke hole drilling and uses steel spokes.
The same versatile hubs are used and they're centerlock only. Availability will be from around July 2018.
The benefit is that there's more volume in the tyre, which provides additional comfort and grip. Bikes designed around this wheelsize could benefit from shorter chainstays and according to Mavic gives the option for more 'interesting' geometry.
- Prices TBC
At the entry-level Mavic has the AllRoad UST, with a target release of July.
The rims are UST-ready, but have a sleeve joint rather than welded construction. They have an internal width of 22mm.
The AllRoad isn't offered with a tyre at this price and it uses traditional round steel spokes. The hub compatibility is still there though, as is the ID360 freehub.
- €250, international prices TBC
Yksion AllRoad XL SL
This new gravel tyre has a thick rubber tread designed to offer protection from rocks and roots.
The tyre is UST-ready, meaning it needs sealant to be fully airtight, but should only need 40g of sealant per tyre. It is designed to measure up at 40mm wide on a 22mm internal width rim, so there are decent levels of volume available.
Mavic recommends that the chevron-based tread pattern is used pointing backwards on the front wheel and run in the opposite direction on the rear.
Mavic claims that reverse chevrons works better for water dispersal when the tyre is leaned over in a corner.
At the rear, the chevrons point forward, which Mavic claims pushes water to the edges when the wheel is upright.
- £52 / €59 / $80
Yksion AllRoad UST
The standard Yksion AllRoad is a narrower 30mm tyre (on a 22mm rim) with a slicker tread and a touch less protection for lighter riders on less-rough terrain.
This focus on reducing rolling resistance extends to the rubber compound, where less butyl is used, further speeding up the tyre. Again, the tyre is UST ready, but only needs 30g of sealant.
The 30mm tyre has been on the market since the original Ksyrium AllRoad wheel was released, however later this year a 35mm version will be on the market. This will be in addition to a brown/tan sidewall model for that classic look, which is apparently in fashion at the moment.
- £52 / €59 / $80
Mavic AllRoad Pro wheels and Yksion AllRoad XL ride impressions
Without a direct back-to-back comparison, it's hard to make too detailed a judgement on the feel of the wheels, but over a couple of days' riding on massively varied terrain I came away impressed with the package.
At a claimed 1,610g for the pair (without tyres) they aren't flyweight, yet the wheels didn't feel sluggish or dead on riding, and I suspect that Mavic's work on reducing the rim weight pays dividends here.
I ran the 40mm tyres at around 35psi on rocky trails, but at no point did I feel that the tyres were unduly at risk of puncturing. There was a fair amount of cushioning to the ride and it was the weight, rather than any added rolling resistance, that potentially slowed the wheels on road sections.
In mud the lack of serious bite from the tread meant some slipping both for front and rear wheels, so if these are the conditions you regularly ride I'd be tempted for a more aggressively treaded tyre, but for general gravel roads and rockier sections they posed no issues. That added depth of tread actually gives a surefooted feel for the most part.
If your riding is purely on gravel roads, rather than chunkier stuff, I reckon the non-XL 30mm tyres, or the upcoming 35mm tyres, would be the ones to go for. Their slicker, lower profile tread should roll faster, but with the obvious reduction in traction when it gets soft.
My Mavic App
Mavic developed an app to help riders tune their wheels and tyres. By entering data such as riding style, weight, and terrain, the app will suggest appropriate tyre pressures and widths. It's also one of the ways to register Mavic wheels for warranty etc.
The app is available from mavic.com or on the relevant app stores.
Mavic has a five-piece clothing range, designed to complement the riding style of the AllRoad wheels.
AllRoad Insulated Vest
This gilet uses a Primaloft insulation with a lightweight Pertex fabric for a very packable, lightweight vest suitable for chilly conditions. It's reversible, with grey or orange options, and has a storm flap and magnetic neck closure for comfort.
A rear pocket and reflective details are present on the orange side.
The AllRoad jersey has a tough, woven fabric towards the top of the garment and a Merino wool section lower down. Mavic claims this design better manages comfort and moisture levels.
The jersey has a polo collar, snap buttons on the quarter-length opening, three regular sized pockets on the rear and a smaller zippered one.
AllRoad Thermo Jersey
The Thermo Jersey is a thicker Merino jersey with long sleeves. It has a snap neck closure, full-length zip, a chest pocket and a single zippered one at the rear.
The neck closure can be kept closed, while the zip is opened to better regulate temperature.
AllRoad Fitted Short
Mavic reckons that the discerning gravel rider wants a non-flappy, baggy short for riding. The DWR-coated material has a close fit to reduce flapping and there are couple of regular-placed pockets and a thigh-based one too.
AllRoad Pro Shoe
Available in September, the AllRoad Pro shoe is a high-end, very lightweight, gravel orientated SPD shoe.
It has a dual density rubber tread and a sole with an 80 percent carbon mix, which gives it a relatively stiff feel.
The Pro show uses a lightweight 'matrix' woven upper that weighs a claimed 16g, which Mavic says is five times more abrasion resistant than traditional synthetic uppers and ten times more resistant than woven materials.
The fibres are DWR-coated before being woven.