Profile Design’s T3 Plus is hands down one of our favorite aerobars on the market today. We have ridden many bikes with these bars and loved every mile in them. So it may come as a surprise when we say we were quite hesitant to try the T3 Plus Carbon—the reason being that the Carbon is much more than the T3 Plus fashioned in carbon fiber. While the Carbon retains the wrist-relief shape of the T3 Plus, that’s pretty much the only thing they have in common. From the new F-35 pads to the pistol grip bar ends, the Carbon is a different animal entirely. And as it turns out, one we enjoyed spending time with immensely.
Our biggest hang-up when we first encountered the Carbon was the pistol grip bar ends. For lack of a better explanation, they just looked…well, “wrong.” We are fans of bar tape on our extensions as it adds to the “gripability” and comfort. But when we imagined the pistol grip bar ends with tape we thought it would be a bit too much to handle. Instead, we found the exact opposite to be true. These were some of the most comfortable grips we have ever come across. Since we did our testing with these clipped on to a drop bar, we unfortunately cannot speak to how they would function with shifters (mechanical or Di2). But when clipped to a road bike, they were fantastic.
The Carbons also feature Profile Design’s new F-35 armrest and J4 Brackets. The F-35 features three positions that provide 30mm of adjustment and 15° of rotation adjustment. When compared with the F-19 pads on the alloy T3 Plus, the 35s provide a much greater amount of lateral support, which leads to an incredibly comfortable ride.
The J4 bracket is a major change to Profile Design’s previous brackets. In prior designs, the armrest and pursuit brackets were completely different parts. With the J4, the armrest and pursuit brackets are integrated into a single piece. The downside is a bit less adjustability, specifically on pad angle. But we think that is a minor tradeoff when you consider how much easier this bracket is to setup. First (and this is huge) you can adjust the extensions without the need to remove the pads. Anyone who has adjusted aerobars can relate to the frustration of pulling off the pads to adjust the angle or position of the extensions—it’s just one more added step. Secondly, the majority of riders want a perfectly level pad angle, and the J4 ensures that without the need to pull out your level. Finally the J4 allows up to 80mm of stack adjustment that raises not just the pads, but the entire assembly, which allows you to maintain the relationship between pad and extension.
Our only gripe about the Carbons is the weight. At a measured 616g for the pair, this is not a lightweight addition to the bike and certainly not the lightest option out there. But for the majority of riders, the comfort of the bars combined with the ease of adjustability will likely put to rest any concerns they have about weight.
One of the best perks of being a part of the AeroGeeks team is that we get to experience new equipment we may normally just pass by at our local bike shop. The T3 Plus Carbons are the exact reason you cannot judge a book by its cover. Their incredible comfort combined with the ease of adjustability easily make the T3 Plus Carbons one of the top clip-on aerobars on the market.