The Mavic Ksyrium Elite is one of the most popular upgrade wheelsets. The product continues to develop so here is our review of the current version
One of the easiest and biggest changes you can make to improve the performance of your bike is to upgrade the wheels. If your bike cost below £2,000 then there is a good chance that the Mavic Kysrium Elite will represent a significant upgrade. For those with deeper pockets, the Mavic Ksyrium Elite has long been regarded as a solid training and everyday wheel, while precious carbon is preserved for race day and special occasions.
There is also a disc brake-specific version of this wheel, which we will be reviewing in the future.
Mavic Kysrium Elites are one of the most popular upgrade wheelsets around, with a good reputation for reliability, quality and easy servicing. Having bought and extensively ridden the previous version of this wheel, I felt well placed to judge Mavic’s latest iteration. The current Mavic Ksyrium Elite features a wider internal rim width of 17mm increased from 15mm over the previous. If you are wanting to consider other potential wheel upgrade options we have a page on the best upgrade wheels you can find here.
The wider rim equates to the tyre sitting wider, providing better grip in the corners, a more comfortable ride and better integration of the tyre and rim. Previously, 25mm tyres would mushroom on the rim. There are also three new choices of nipple and hub colour; the red you see here, electric blue and classic black. The anodised finishes look great and it is nice to see choices. It also means there is scope to colour coordinate with your frame.
Another visual difference from its predecessor is the rounded rim profile, something Mavic calls 4D Milling. It looks nicer and is designed to reduce inertia and improve aerodynamics. I have to admit that I didn’t really notice any discernible difference in aerodynamics, but any improvement is welcome, considering the previous version didn’t have a strong reputation in this department.
For the same sort of money you could opt for a budget carbon deep-section clincher, such as Wiggle’s Cosine wheels. However, the superior stiffness and quality of the Mavics swings it for me. It’s no contest.
In terms of weight there’s less of a change from the previous version. The redesigned rim weighs 405g, and a pair without tyres hits Mavic’s scales at 1550g. On our scales, with skewers included, the pair weighed 1708g – not super light but certainly competitive for the price.
Mavic’s QRM+ bearings found in these wheels are superb and are actually the same as used in the top of the range Cosmic Ultimate wheels – an excellent example of how technology trickles down.
Video – Buyer’s guide to road bike wheels
Having bunny-hopped up kerbs and ploughed into several potholes (resulting in several pinch flats!) I can report, these wheels are as bombproof as the previous model, with no truing required throughout testing. Stiffness is good too, with no flex or brake rub noted when sprinting.
The wheels come with Mavic’s own 25mm Yksion Pro Griplink and Powerlink tyres. Measuring with calipers, I can report that although they measure 25mm, they come up considerably narrower than Continental GP4000 or Schwalbe One 25mm tyres, both which sit around 26.5mm on these rims.
The Mavic tyres offer good grip in both wet and dry and roll pretty well. However, having covered many miles, the consensus here is that puncture protection isn’t the best and I would switch to something else once they have worn out. Still, including tyres and tubes makes for good value.
Inevitably when a product is popular and used by a large number of people, some will have a bad experience, or issue. Fortunately Mavic offers a solid warranty and repair programme for the unlucky minority – I have used this service in the past and was impressed with the turnaround
Mavic has taken one of the best upgrade wheels on the market and made it even better. Head over to the Mavic website for more details.
If you have £500 to spend on a pair of wheels, look no further.