Speedplay has been refining its lollipop-on-a-stick pedal for over a decade, and those who embrace its easy-in, easy out mechanism and simple architecture become devotees for life. With a following that crosses over about equally between road and mountain, it would seem that it would not need a dedicated MTB pedal, so we were surprised to discover the new Syzr – an entirely new pedal and cleat concept. Syzr appears to be just another Shimano SPD clone in profile, but upon examination, Speedplay has taken a completely different direction for XC/trail clipless pedals.
Meet the Syzr Pedal:
Speedplay's Syzr pedal system breaks new ground with rotational float built into the cleat and an independent mechanism that stabilizes the foot over the pedal. Syzr pedals and cleats fit all SPD-compatible shoes, although the fact that the cleat is responsible for the system's lateral rigidity presupposes that the shoe has a rigid sole like carbon-fiber-reinforced Sidi pictured here.
Conventional SPD-based pedals use a cleat to engage the pedal mechanism, but the cleat offers no lateral support. Lateral stability is the job of the shoe maker – and in a perfect world, parallel rails molded into the sole of the shoe contact pressure points on the pedal with just the right pressure to keep the rider positively connected through the pedal with the crankset. Speedplay knows, however, that the chance of five different shoes fitting as many different SPD-type pedals is slightly better than a magazine editor winning the World Cup. The Syzr’s cleat both engages the pedal and provides lateral support.
The Syzr cleat has a pair of opposing set screws that to limit the rotational float action of the cleat. The cleat is fixed with two standard SPD type screws and its wide base prevents flexing of the shoe's sole.
When the shoe engages the pedal, wings on the Syzr cleat lock onto two stainless steel pads on either side of the pedal's axle housing, which eliminates any rocking side to side. For those who need rotational ‘float’ (most do), there are up to 10 degrees available and it’s adjustable with a pair of tiny setscrews down to zero. The Syzr pedal has no float in order to keep the stabilizing wings lined up with the pedal. Instead, the cleat rotates to provide float. Because the cleat handles the float, the pedal’s spring-locking mechanism holds the foot more securely than a single engagement designed to perform both tasks. Reversed logic is a Syzr theme, as the moving jaw of the engagement mech is up front, not on the rear plate as in Shimano clones. Speedplay says that this prevents unwanted disengagement when the pedal is subjected to high-pressure pedaling forces. Release tension is adjustable via a Phillips screw.
Syzr pedals use up the same amount of real estate on the sole of an SPD-compatible shoe as its competitors. SPD-type pedals rest on the ledges built into the sole, while the Syzr uses metal-to-metal contact between the cleat and pedal to provide lateral security. Stainless steel bands protect the aluminum pedal body at the contact points.
Speedplay’s new design engages in much the same manner as a typical SPD-type pedal, which is a plus for experienced riders. Mud shedding and foul-weather performance is said to be superior to existing MTB pedals. Syzr cleats fit all two-bolt SPD-type shoe interfaces. The shafts are stainless steel with needle bearings inboard and a ball bearing outboard. The claimed weight is 300 grams for the pedals and 56-grams each for the cleats. Price is $215 with stainless axles (more options on the way).Tried Speedplay's Syzr pedals? Pinkbike would love to know your thoughts on Speedplay’s latest XC/trail design.