What happens when the aero-engineering legend Simon Smart, and Enve Composites team up? Well, the Enve Smart System line of wheels, of course. Simply put, the SES lineup plays host to some of the highest levels of strength-to-weight ratios, race-ready stiffness, and watts-saving aerodynamics that we've ever seen. And of course, the Enve 6.7 Carbon Clincher Wheelset is a shiny apple in this family tree.
As part of the Enve Smart System, SES series, the 6.7 carbon clincher uses Enve's most sophisticated technology and engineering techniques in order to ensure a fast, stiff, and aerodynamic wheelset. The 6.7's aerodynamic design starts with the size differential of the wheels. Enve accounted for the different behaviors of front and rear wheels, and designed the 6.7s with the front wheel that's 60mm deep and 26mm wide, while the rear wheel is 70mm deep and 24mm wide. The front wheel's shallow profile and wide stance helps decrease drag in windy conditions. On the other hand, the rear wheel's depth decreases drag, because stability is less affected at the aft position of the bike. According to Enve, the 6.7s create a low drag number rivaling many competitors' 60mm wheels. In fact, when comparing the necessary power required to hold 40kph at yaw angles ranging from 0 to 16 degrees, the 6.7 goes toe-to-toe with the Zipp 808 Firecrest Clincher and is leaps and bounds ahead of the 404 Firecrest Clincher -- even more so at yaw angles 11 degrees and above.
Outside of consistent aerodynamic performance, the most noticeable advantage of the 6.7 carbon clincher wheelset is its enhanced stability. The 6.7 demonstrates stellar results under the Enve Stability Index, a series of tests that incorporate the measurement of transient aerodynamics. In the wind tunnel, the front wheel is subjected to quick changes in wind degree at set yaw angles, and the steering torque of user-correction is then measured. The test represents real-world conditions, and surprisingly, Enve is one of the only non-Formula One manufacturers to conduct it. The 6.7 shape was developed as a result of these tests, and it ensures predictable airflow attachment over the rim, regardless of crosswind. In fact, the linear steering response trumps even the Zipp Firecrest series. In a crosswind, the 6.7 experiences a buildup of side-force equal to the changing angle of the wind, and the predictability prevents the need for rider over-correction.
The Smart System 6.7 clincher is not only aero, but it's also lightweight, stiff, and strong. The Enve SES series boasts the highest strength-to-weight ratio on the market, and this is due in part to Enve's patented process of molding in-spoke holes, nipple seats, and valve stem holes. Knowing that carbon fiber gains strength from continuous fibers, Enve routes the fibers around each hole in a 100% intact design. This design allows a lower weight at the spoke face, and adds overall rigidity to the rim. When built, the molded design promotes both higher spoke tension and tension uniformity than the industry standard of bladder molding. Another aspect of the 6.7's light weight is due to Enve's use of removal bladders during the molding process. While most composite rim manufacturers leave the rim-shaping, inflatable bladder within the rim, Enve spends the time and money to remove it. This time-consuming process reduces rim weight, and makes for a perfectly tensioned wheel build.
And outside of incredible strength-to-weight ratios and insane levels of compliant rigidity, Enve has also taken the time to ensure that you can stop at great speeds -- an all-too-common ailment of the carbon clincher. To do so, the 6.7 has been given a textured braking surface that promotes a positive engagement with your pads, even in wet conditions. So, you can descend like a banshee without the worry of overheating or only being able to scrub speed.
The Enve Smart System 6.7 carbon clinchers use a 20/24 spoke count, and are built with DT Aerolite bladed spokes on DT Swiss 240 hubs.
The Enve Smart System 6.7 Carbon Clincher Wheelset is available in the color Black and with either a Campagnolo or Shimano/SRAM compatible freehub body.
I bought the wheels for the simple reason that I wanted them. I did not expect them to make me faster, etc. Having said that, they do seem to be faster than my older (non-aero) wheels. It's hard to quantify, but the PR's are coming steadily on routes I've ridden for multiple years and many times.
I had no experience with carbon or aero wheels, and these wheels do feel different. The ride is slightly more harsh due to the deep section, but not overly so. I've read that people feel the 6.7s are easier to maintain speed with. That's subjective at this point but I would have to agree.
I haven't noticed any issues climbing, but even at 1500 plus grams these wheels are lighter than what I'm used to by 200-300 grams so that's not surprising.
Very happy with the purchase!
**I have the wheels built with Chris King R45 hubs.