So far, in the Zipp world of carbon fiber, there's only been one wheel that hasn't received the venerable Firecrest Technology. Unfortunately for us, it's a wheel that we use for everything from climbing to cyclocross. However, the tides have changed, and the new wave of carbon clinchers has arrived. The Zipp 202 Firecrest Carbon Clincher is not only the lightest clincher in the Zipp war chest, but even as a clincher, it reigns supreme as the ultimate Zipp climbing wheel. Period. Some things are simply worth the wait. Zipp's concept for applying the Firecrest Technology is relatively simple -- what goes up must come down. For years, the 202 has been the wheel of choice for Grand Tour ascents, but Zipp found room for improvement on the wheel's handling and stability on the way down. The natural decision was to produce a Firecrest version of the wheel, but like any engineering, unforeseen variables present themselves the further that you go under the surface. For example, Zipp found that the 202's profile was more sensitive to tire shape than deeper rim depths. However, instead of being a hindrance, Zipp adapted the Firecrest profile, and accordingly, the 202 Firecrest is at home with a vast array of tire widths. On top of this, the low and wide profile of the 202 makes it the least susceptible to side force of any Zipp wheel. Now, the 202 is ready for 'cross, hair-raising descents, and the roughest roads of Belgium -- all at a low low weight of around 1380 grams. To understand all of this, let's jump into what Firecrest technology actually is. The Firecrest is Zipp's most ambitious rim shape to date. Designed to account for differences in airflow between tubulars and clinchers, the 202 Firecrest carbon clincher maintains the traditional 202 rim depth of 32. 0mm, but now it's been given a max width of 25. 4mm. Using computational fluid dynamics, Zipp moved the center of pressure towards the steering axis to create the most stable, predictable, and neutral rim in i...
- Material: [rim] carbon fiber
- Rim Width: [brake track width] 24.62 mm, [maximum width] 25.4 mm
- Rim Depth: 32 mm
- Front Hub: Zipp 88
- Front Hub Type: quick-release