No longer a fringe discipline in cycling with riders cobbling together repurposed gear, gravel riding and racing has come into its own with components dedicated explicitly to the task at hand. Gravel bikes are topping new bike sales and riders are noting their versatility and ability to tackle whatever terrain is on tap. As with other areas of cycling, tire widths are playing a deciding factor in rim design, especially with internal width and just like road and mountain, tires are getting wider. This continues with gravel as width helps increase the volume of tires promising more traction and comfort over chunky B-roads. ENVE Composites started with a clean slate with its brand new G23 rims and laces them to 24h DT Swiss 240 hubs with your choice of 11-speed road or XD drivers in common road disc spacing and axle diameters. These are ENVE's first ever gravel specific rims and as such, are the lightest 700c tubeless hoops from the firm which are on average, 330-grams, unbelievably light helping you tackle those endless climbs that rack up to 5-digit days or if you get your chunk of climbing in hour-long segments. This particular wheelset is for 700c bikes and if you're looking for a wheelset that you can train and ride on day in and day out that's still light and fast enough when you're toeing a start line, few wheels fit the bill like the G23 Disc Brake Wheelset - Tubeless from ENVE.
As we stated above, this is the first rimset from ENVE specifically built for gravel training and racing. It received valuable feedback from its in-house riders and racers as well as sponsored racers with a goal to build a super lightweight set of hoops with the durability needed to prevent you from being stranded in the middle of nowhere. Another key feature carrying over from its mountain bike tech is the inclusion of its wide rim bead that virtually says goodbye to rims cutting lightweight tires during bottom out. These are lofty goals, but ENVE is not one to rest on its laurels.
Hookless rim beads first appeared on ENVE's last generation M-Series and are currently used on all of its mountain rims. They provide a vast improvement over the former XC, AM, and DH rims offering easier tubeless setup, improved rim durability, and increased weight savings. After a few seasons, the only complaint is the narrow bead hook can prove sharp on bottom outs, often leading to sliced tires. With the G23, it employs a wider hookless bead that's the culmination of over 2 years of development met to address both rim and tire durability. The rim shape features a broader leading edge on the bead which creates a more forgiving platform for the tire to bottom out, thus reducing the likelihood of pinch or snake-bite style flats. The design also allows for greater impact resistance for the rim when smashing it through washboard descents and chunky gravel. You can now confidently run lower tire pressure improving traction and decreasing rolling resistance without fear of a dreaded pinch flat miles away from civilization. The 23mm internal width on the G23 is designed for gravel tires between 35-45mm wide providing the ideal profile for improved offering better cornering stability, braking, and rolling efficiency.
What we find so remarkable is how durable the rim is given its feather weight. The team and its sponsored athletes put countless miles on samples and absolutely refuses to drop weight if it means a drop in durability and the testing yields the exact carbon laminate, resin, layup, spoke counts, and even lacing patterns to achieve the desired durability, weight, and all important ride qualities for the wheel's intended use. The end result builds the G23 which is a no-compromise gravel wheelset and the lower rim depth, relative to its road offerings, offers greater vertical compliance helping to reduce fatigue over the long miles in the saddle without losing its prized lateral stiffness which corners like it's on rails. The 24-hole count further improves the ride comfort and sheds every gram possible.
Unique to every ENVE rim is the patented molded in-spoke holes, nipple seats, and valve holes, offering the highest strength-to-weight ratio in the industry. The nipple pocket is super strong and pull through is a thing of the past. When laying up the rim, ENVE places pins in the layup at the spoke hole locations so it can maintain continuous fiber integrity versus the industry standard of drilling post cure, which cuts into the fibers and weakens the structure. This results in increased rim rigidity, a stronger anchor point for the nipples and weight savings at the spoke face.
The internal nipples are able to articulate in their pockets much like a ball-and-socket joint. This yields a higher and more uniform spoke tension key to strong, true wheels from day one and throughout the many years of ownership. To save every gram possible, ENVE removes the bladder after curing where other composite manufacturers leave the rim-shaping, inflatable bladder in the rim. This process takes more time and expertise, but the end result is a lighter wheelset and one that is more perfectly balanced.
This particular build sees the 700c G23 rims laced to the industry's much-lauded DT Swiss 240. Options for 15mm or 12mm front axles exist, so choose the one that your fork requires. These hubs are for centerlock rotors and can be used with 6-bolt rotors with adapters. Standard HG 11-speed road freehub or XD drivers for SRAM cassettes are available. The 240s are prized for their lightweight construction, superior durability, and tool-free service. ENVE recommends tires greater between 35-45mm and offers a 5-year warranty and lifetime crash replacement for the original owner.
- A do-it-all gravel wheelset for 700c bikes
- Rim bead width optimized for tire and rim durability
- Internal width optimized for gravel size tires
- Lightweight carbon construction for fast acceleration
- Laterally stiff for sure tracking
- DT Swiss 240 road disc hubs for smooth, trouble-free miles
- ENVE continues to redefine the carbon fiber bicycle wheel