Two years ago SRAM released the RAIL 50 all-mountain wheelset and today the company announced another option in the RAIL line, the RAIL 40. This wheelset features much of the same technology as the RAIL 50 but at a lower price point.
Internally, the RAIL 40 rims are 23mm wide which is beefier than SRAM’s XC and Trail rims, though not nearly as wide as many of the rims we’ve seen come on the market lately. The rims are UST and feature an asymmetrical profile which, according to SRAM, results in a “lightweight but strong” rim.
Of course since these wheels are the latest and greatest from SRAM, they’re Boost 148 compatible and can be ordered with either a standard driver body or XD for those who roll 1×11. The rear hub offers 52 points of engagement: 26 teeth, 2 pairs of pawls. The RAIL 40 wheels also utilize SRAM’s SOLO SPOKE design which means all the spokes (front and back, drive-side and non-drive-side) are all the same length, a big plus for repairs.
Unlike the RAIL 50 wheels, the 40s will only be offered in 27.5 and 29er sizes (what a difference two years makes in the MTB wheel business). As a lower cost alternative to the 50s, the RAIL 40 wheelsets weigh roughly 60-70g more (on average, 1810g for the 27.5, 1900g for the 29er). But for many consumers, that minor weight penalty will be worth the cost savings: the RAIL 40s will retail for between $320 and $380 per wheel (compared to $500 and up for the RAIL 50s).
We’ll keep you posted on wheel availability and additional info as it becomes available.