Hunt are set to roll out new Limitless Research wheels later this week as the culmination of their more focused, premium aero R&D work over the last year and a half or so. Update: Their full Arenberg Testing video is now live. These first wheels are the same 48 Limitless Aero Disc that we saw last summer at Eurobike, designed to be the fastest, real-world aero wheels on the markets set up with a 28mm Schwalbe Pro One tubeless tire. And to prove they are fast, Hunt set out to take the Strava KOM across the historic cobblestones of the Trouée d’Arenberg on the road to Roubaix…
Hunt 48 Limitless Aero Disc, KOM over Trouée d’Arenberg
Update: Scroll down for the full length Limitless Research: Trouée d’Arenberg Test video.
We’ve been following Hunt since they first delivered high-value, consumer-direct tubeless alloy road wheels a bit more than four years ago. But they have come a long way since then.
In fact, last spring we had an opportunity to catch Hunt in the famous GST wind tunnel and got a bit of a behind the scenes look at what would become this new aero wheel project.
Hunt’s objective was clear, leverage their production experience together with the aero design capabilities of at-the-time new wheel engineer Luisa Grappone to produce the fastest wheel for what most of us cyclists actually ride these days. So the requirements became: a mid-depth aero wheel with disc brakes, larger volume tires, and ready to ride irregular road surfaces. Hunt saw a big need to partner with a tire manufacturer as few aero wheel companies are open about how much impact tires & the resulting rim+tire profile has on wheel aerodynamics.
So Hunt settled on the 28c tubeless Schwalbe Pro One tire, which continues to be one of the top all-rounder solutions for fast, even rough road riding. With a wide profile, riders could then size down to a 25 or up to a 30mm tire, and still get most of the same gains. (Hunt says you can use as small as a 23mm tire with the new wheels. And they certainly aren’t limited to Schwalbes, since Hunt seems to have been using Maxxis Padrone-TR tires in testing too.)
As we saw before, the 48 Limitless Aero Disc is a super wide wheel – 22.5mm internal and 34.5mm external, with a 48mm deep blunt-nosed aero profile.
Top keep a rim that wide from becoming heavy, Hunt developed a new construction technology that uses a non-structural, low-density expanded polymer filler.
Bonded and then cured into the carbon of the rim to get the wide aero shape they wanted, the filler is said to shave 50g off rim weight vs. standard carbon. (The filler is less than 38% the density & mass of standard carbon composite.)
And the resulting wheels are fast. How fast? Hunt is doing some final tests in the wind tunnel this week, and will get back to us on that. But as to that KOM over the Trouée d’Arenberg pavé…
Astute followers of Strava segments might have notice that a new fastest time was set a few weeks back on the official secteur of pavé with pro cyclist Alex Paton of Canyon DHB riding for Hunt. Word on the cobbles is that Paton chopped 10 seconds off the segment on these new wheels.
As for any more detail on wheelset spec, weights, pricing & availability… it looks like we will have to wait just over two months until the 48 Limitless Aero Disc gets its full launch. But Hunt is set to release the full video of their Limitless Reasearch R&D process and trip to northern France on Friday, ahead of this year’s Paris-Roubaix.
Update: You can however head to the new 48 Limitless Aero Disc wheels’ landing page, where you can sign up for an early pre-order, and get more info as it is made available.