Interbike 2016 – Reynolds Aero

For the past few years, Reynolds has been teasing us. In the spring, they told us they had nothing new but to check back in June. In June we checked back only to hear that it would still be a few more months. So when we walked up to their booth on the second day of the indoor show, you can hopefully understand how we initially walked right by their completely overhauled Aero series of rims and didn’t even notice. But the new Reynolds Aero is here, and we cannot wait to ride it.

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The Reynolds Aero

The new Reynolds Aero will be available for 2017 in four versions – Aero 46 DB (Disc Brake), Aero 65 DB, Aero 65, and Aero 80. (If you are wondering what happened to the previous Aero 72/90, Reynolds tells us the Aero 80 is that much better than the 90—so much so that they didn’t have any reason to go that deep again).

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The Aero line starts with an updated DET (Dispersive Effect Termination) profile. DET smooths turbulent, excited, energized airflow and re-attaches it to the aerodynamic surface, effectively reducing aerodynamic drag. Reynolds tells us the updated shape provides a drag reduction over their previous AERO wheels of 4-5 watts at apparent wind speeds approaching 30 kph.

The new wheels are now tubeless ready and are meant to accommodate larger tires without altering aerodynamic performance. The 19mm tubeless ready tire channels and new rim shapes result in nearly identical lift/drag numbers through a range of tires.

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The hubs (by Industry Nine) have been updated, and Reynolds claims ride quality is improved compared to the previous model. The wider flange spacing and resulting spoke bracing angles boost lateral stiffness for better control, crisp acceleration, and enhanced durability. The new hubs now include bearings by Enduro to minimize rolling resistance.

Disc wheels use a center lock disc rotor. And for non-disc wheels (the 65 and 80), the brake track has been updated with heat resistant High TG resin. This new method improves upon one Reynolds prior CTg technology (and considering how much we loved the braking on this wheel, we are incredibly excited to check it out.)

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MSRP for either the Aero 60 set or Aero 80 set is $2,499. The disc brake equipped Aero 46 DB and Aero 65 DB retail for $2,599.

Our Thoughts

We love surprises like this, and an update to a wheel that we still regularly use when testing bikes and baselining other wheels was most definitely welcome. The previous Reynolds Aero had been one of the best braking wheels we have ridden, and we look forward to seeing how the new ones stack up. That, along with Reynolds’ claim that the 80 is as fast or faster than the 90 (but with the additional control of a shallower wheel), makes these a 2017 must-review item. Keep your eyes peeled for a set of these showing up in our Mail Room, and stay tuned for more great Interbike coverage.

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