You don't see a lot of TIme road pedals out there these days, but they bear consideration if you're looking for an alternative to the larger players
Time’s pedal system has become the also-ran of the road bike pedal market, which is dominated by Shimano, Look and Speedplay. However, its Xpresso pedals are still going strong and the range includes the ultra-light 133g-a-pair Xpresso 15. At £400 these are a bit extravagant, but the Xpresso 6 is more reasonably priced and weighs just 80g a pair more.
For that price, the Xpresso 6 offers a long composite plastic body with a large engagement surface and a carbon blade spring to handle clipping in. Time says that its pedals also have a low stack height. As well as angular float, they also provide 2.5mm of side-to-side float to suit different pedalling styles.
The iClic engagement system is pretty easy to get the hang of. The carbon blade spring rests in the open position, so unlike other road clipless pedal systems you don’t have to push against the spring’s tension to engage the cleat. Once the cleat is aligned, the blade spring just flips to mesh with the rear of the cleat – usually but not always with an audible click.
The rear engagement surface is shorter than Shimano’s and I wasn’t always certain that I’d engaged correctly. You have to get used to presenting the cleat at the correct angle for positive engagement.
But once properly clicked in the pedals give a firm, confident hold. A previous reviewer had cut his leg on the sharp edges of the pedal’s front engagement surface, but I never found this a problem.
Although other pedal makers offer a carbon body rather than composite from around the price of the Xpresso 6s, I didn’t find Time’s plastic felt any less solid. There’s a wide metal plate on the top of the pedal on which the centre of the cleat rests, giving good pedal-to-cleat contact. Disengagement with an outward or inward twist of the foot is drama-free too.
Watch: How to fit and remove pedals
The cleat itself is longer and narrower than a Shimano SPD-SL cleat. The extra length is due to the side supports being set further back, which protects the engagement surface better. But it does mean that getting some overshoes over the cleat is a bit more difficult, as their apertures are usually designed around Shimano-sized cleats. This doesn’t get in the way of pedal engagement though.
Overall I’ve been impressed with Time’s road pedals. There’s quite a lot of flexibility built into the design, so you’re likely to find them comfortable, although not the possibility to alter float and engagement tension which Shimano and Look offer.
A nicely designed pedal with easy engagement but lacking the adjustability of other makes’ clipless road pedals.