During my visit to Sun Valley, I happened to randomly bump into a marketing contact of mine—Adrian Montgomery—at the top of the ski lift on Bald Mountain. Naturally we went out to shred a few laps, and after a couple of runs he asked me if I wanted to ride a set of brand-new carbon Enduro wheels from Reynolds. Of course I said yes—the wheelset I was on was great, but blinged-out carbon rims?! Who can resist?
The Reynolds 27.5 Enduro Carbon wheels sport an asymmetric rim design, which “allows more even spoke tension for increased durability and ride quality,” according to Reynolds. The rims measure 28mm wide internally (34mm external), with a modern hookless bead design.
The carbon rims are laced to the renowned Industry Nine hubs, offering engagement every 3 degrees.
The carbon rim is constructed using Mountain Rim 5 (MR5) technology, which utilizes different carbon fiber, epoxy, and resin, and assigns these specific types of carbon layup to the 5 different rim regions. According to Reynolds, by adjusting the specs, they “achieve the perfect tensile strength, stiffness, and elongation for each rim model.”
The tubeless set weighs a claimed 1660g.
Out on the Trail
I tested the Reynolds Enduro wheels mounted on Ibis’s HD3 enduro bike, wearing Maxxis Minion DHF tires—a perfect pairing. However, the trails that I rode on admittedly were not the best of proving grounds, especially compared to my home trails in Colorado. I covered 55 miles of singletrack in Idaho over the course of two days aboard these wheels—no small feat—but aside from one rock garden and a few steep pitches, the singletrack was fairly nontechnical. So bear that in mind as you read this review.
Ibis specs the 2.3” Minions stock because, when mounted on a wide rim, they still provide a pretty well-rounded tire profile and don’t square off too much. Similarly, I found them to maintain a decent profile on the Reynolds Enduro wheels, although a 2.5” tire wouldn’t be amiss here. The entire setup was tubeless, which allowed me to run very low pressures, producing excellent traction in the loose moon dust and scree conditions prevalent in Sun Valley.
While I did dial my pressures in for the majority of the trail conditions, when it came to pinning through rocks I did smack the rims a few times—hard. Despite some pretty serious impacts, these carbon rims were completely, 100% fine—impressive.
During those few times when I was pinning through the gnar, I found the Enduro wheels to track straight and true without a moment of hesitation, even when getting loose and wild. Even with a wide tire and low air pressure, the stiffness of these wheels was readily apparent, and despite having zero experience on them, I immediately felt confident enough to put my trust in these rims on unknown terrain.
The Industry Nine hubs that Reynolds paired with the carbon rims did a very fine job in all applications. The 3 degrees of engagement is industry-leading and immediate, and I found the wheels to accelerate quickly and maintain speed supremely well, thanks to excellent bearings and hubs with minimal friction.
In my experience the Reynolds 27.5 Enduro Carbon wheels are a bombproof, modern wheelset. With minimal heft, superb stiffness, fast rolling speeds, and excellent hub engagement, I don’t have a single complaint about these wheels, and would be more than happy to call them my own. At $2,500 MSRP for the pair they don’t come cheap, but the Reynolds still cost a little less than comparable ENVEs, and they arguably offer even more advanced technology.
For even more proof of the radness of the Enduro Carbon wheels, check out this video of pro rider Mason Bond absolutely shredding on this wheelset: