Repente’s Carbon LCF Series Prime 2.0 saddle ticks an impressive range of boxes. At 169g, it’s very lightweight for its size and price, the patented RLS system allows you to replace the seat cover should you scuff the one it comes with or want a different design, and the carbon shell provides an efficient feeling platform that still flexes with your movements. The only real downside is that the cover can be a little slippery in wet and grimy conditions.
Firm but forgiving
Easily replaceable saddle cover
Impressively lightweight for the price
Hand made in Italy
Can be a little slippery in wet conditions
As with most things in life, the law of diminishing returns also applies to saddles (opens in new tab)– the amount you spend isn’t directly proportional to the performance you’ll get. Italian saddle manufacturer, Repente, recognises this with its Carbon LCF Series Prime 2.0 – which is designed to be lightweight while still at a reasonable price.
Repente Carbon LCF Series Prime 2.0: the construction
Starting with the base of the saddle, the unidirectional carbon fibre rails are oval in shape with a cross section of 7x9mm – making them a good fit for most seatpost clamps out there.
The rails are bonded to the PA12 long carbon fibre base shell and essentially forms one half of the saddle. Looking underneath, you can see the T10 Torx bolts which make up the Repente Locking System (RLS) and hold the saddle’s padding in place on top of the shell.
Should the padding get scuffed or torn it’s easy and relatively cheap to mount a replacement – at about half the cost of an entire new saddle system. The RLS also allows you to try out some of Repente’s other cover models, such as the Artax GL for extra grip in wet conditions or the Spyd 2.0 if you want to try a design without a cutout.
Tipping our scales at 169g, the Carbon LCF Series Prime 2.0 is impressively lightweight for the level of padding and the price – £130.00 for a saddle that’s handmade in Italy and features that innovative RLS system. Naturally you can go lighter if you spend much more or choose something that’s essentially a carbon wafe.
To provide a little context, the Fizik Antares R1 Versus Evo – which has a pretty typical price/weight/comfort ratio – costs £189.00 and has a claimed weight of 179g.
Saddles are a tough one - what is bliss for one person can equate to a mediaeval instrument of tourture for someone else. For me, although my preference is for a design with a shorter nose and a wider cutout, I'm generally pretty adaptable to most saddle designs.
What I will say is that with the narrow width and relatively long length, the Carbon LCF Series Prime 2.0 is best suited for someone with narrower hips who likes to move about – whether that’s for differing efforts or inclines.
I got on quite well with the firmness of the padding, I don’t like the feeling of wallowing in a lot of cushion and felt like quite an efficient platform. But for that, the Prime 2.0 didn’t feel harsh at all, the carbon shell has a reasonable degree of flex that acts, not quite like a hammock, but something nearing that.
I did find that on wet and grimy rides up heinously steep inclines – the sort which require you perch on the end of the saddle, keeping your weight forward to stop the front wheel from wandering – the shiny fabric on the nose of the saddle was a little slippery. Sometimes I’d slip back down or off the front of the saddle in those cases.
Coming in at £130 and weighing 169g, the Repente Carbon LCF Series Prime 2.0 is really quite lightweight for the price. The Fizik Antares R3 costs £139.99 but weighs around 200g. The Specialized S-Works Phenom saddle does succeed in being a little lighter at 153g (claimed), but it does cost £255.00 and neither of those saddles offer replaceable padding.
Repente’s Carbon LCF Series Prime 2.0 blends a light weight with a reasonable price – as well as featuring the patented RLS system for easily replacing the saddle padding, should yours get scuffed or worn out.
- Weight: 169g (measured)
- Colours: Black
- Contact: www.sellerepente.com
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Starting off riding mountain bikes on the South Downs way, he soon made the switch the road cycling. Now, he’s come full circle and is back out on the trails, although the flat bars have been swapped for the curly ones of a gravel bike.
Always looking for the next challenge, he’s Everested in under 12 hours (opens in new tab) and ridden the South Downs Double in sub 20 (opens in new tab). Although dabbling in racing off-road, on-road and virtually (opens in new tab), to date his only significant achievement has been winning the National Single-Speed Cross-Country Mountain Bike Championships in 2019.
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