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SES 4.5 AR Disc Brake Wheelset
The SES 4.5 AR Disc Brake Wheelset from ENVE was built out of the desire of its sponsored cycling team, Dimension Data, to run wider, beefy road tires over grueling European cobbles while maintaining the usual aerodynamic and handling benefits of riding on standard width road tires and rims. Compared to its more road going SES 4.5, which is aerodynamically optimized around 23-25mm tires, the 4.5 AR profile is built for excellence with plusher 28-30mm tires for extra cushion across the rough sectors and less rolling resistance when the smooth pavement returns. This wheelset provides the ever-growing segment of all-road riders searching for wheels with multi-surface versatility to expand their routes while coving multiple surface conditions. The AR initials stand for All Road, and these wheels (and the generous tires they accommodate) are built to keep going even after road maintenance ends.
We would be remiss to categorize these as just a wider version of the 4.5 though, as ENVE engineers created a whole new carbon layup. The new lay-up makes the most out of the 4.5 AR's 25mm internal rim width, disc-specific hub pairing, and multi-surface utility. ENVE understandably guards the specifics of its layups closely, but if its other proven rim designs are any indicator, this wheelset is sure to withstand all manner of aging pavement, graded gravel, and even singletrack with snappy speed and stability. Another tweak to the usual road design is the inclusion of a hookless bead, which is inspired by ENVE's mountain rims and increases tubeless reliability with a clean tire to rim interaction.
Even with all those changes, the 4.5 AR sees a continuation of ENVE's now signature offset front and rear rim depths by featuring a 49mm front and 55mm rear rim. Like with the standard 4.5, these depths inhabit in the sweet spot between the more climbing oriented 3.4 and TT/crit-leaning 5.6 wheelsets. With wind tunnel and real-world testing to back up claims that these wheels will hold steady in a wide variety of wind conditions, the 4.5 AR takes the 4.5's claim of being the all-rounder wheel of choice for riders across the world to a whole new level—or at least to whole new terrain.
While shaping and dimensions are the brand's calling card, ENVE's obsessively clean construction also sets it apart from the herd of carbon competitors. ENVE wraps carbon fiber continuously around a removable bladder to construct the rims, routing the fibers around each hole for a completely intact, precise design that boasts the highest claimed strength-to-weight ratio on the market. As an added step, ENVE removes the bladder for a final product that's both lighter and more structurally sound than rims that remain packed with molding material. While that extra step adds time and expense to the manufacturing process, the end result is worth it, and it further solidifies ENVE's reputation as a company that cuts no corners.
- A versatile, aerodynamic, all-terrain wheelset
- Carbon construction blends low weight and stiffness
- Rim depth strikes a balance between confident handling and speed
- Wider rim designed is aero-optimized for 28-30mm tires
- ENVE's Alloy hubs are stiff, durable, and fast engaging
- Dimension Data's choice wheelset at Roubaix
- ENVE's advanced engineering continues to lead the industry with innovative rim design
- Item #ENV007F
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