What do you think a wheelset with wide carbon rims, a hub with 108 points of engagement, and a weight of 1700 grams would cost? $2000? $2500? Guess again. How about $1200 USD? That's right – Bontrager's new Line Pro 30 wheelset comes in at an almost unheard of price, especially for a pre-built wheelset from a major manufacturer.
We've seen more reasonably priced carbon wheelsets from the likes of Ibis and Specialized hit the market over the last few years, but Bontrager's Line 30's may be the harbingers of a new era, one where it's not necessary to pawn a family heirloom or cash in a retirement account to afford a set of carbon wheels.
Bontrager Line Pro 30 Details
• Intended use: trail / all-mountain / enduro
• Carbon fiber rims
• Sizes: 27.5'', 29"
• Internal width: 29mm
• External width: 34mm
• Rapid Drive 108 hubs
• Boost spacing
• Weight: 1700 grams (actual, 29" with rim strips)
• MSRP: $1200 USD
The carbon rims have an internal width of 29mm, and a external width of 34mm, which allows them to play nice with a wide range of tires, including the 2.5” and 2.6” options that are becoming more and more common. Those 28 hole rims are laced to Bontrager's Rapid Drive 108 hubs with DT Swiss Aerolite spokes, and Alpina locking nipples keep everything snug and secure.
The Rapid Drive hub relies on a six pawl system and a 54-tooth drive ring. The pawls are offset so that three of them are engaged at a time, which means there's only 3.3 degrees of crank rotation between engagement points. In other words, there's minimal lag between when you step on the pedals and when the pawls engage with the drive ring.
The Line 30's carbon rims have an internally width of 29mm, and are laced up to Bontrager's Rapid Drive 108 hubs.
A 54 tooth drive ring, and two sets of three pawls creates a very quick engaging hub.
I only have five rides in on the Line Pro 30 wheels, but things are off to a good start so far. Getting a set of tubeless tires installed didn't pose any major hassles, and the fact that Bontrager's rim strips are already installed helps make the process even easier.
On the trail, I'd call the rear hub noise 'medium-loud' – it's not quite as attention grabbing (or obnoxious, depending on your point of view) as an Industry Nine or a Chris King, but it's not dead silent either. Engagement is quick and crisp, and so far there hasn't been any strange noises or sticking pawls. The wheels have a nice energetic feel out on the trail, with enough compliance to avoid rattling out fillings, but enough stiffness to slap them into berms without worry.
A handful of rides certainly isn't enough time to comment on how the Line Pro 30 wheels will survive over the long haul, although I will say that there was no shortage of air time and rough, rooty section of trails on those initial outings. The wheels shrugged all of that off without a wobble to be seen, which is a promising start.
If their durability remains up to par the Line 30's are going to end up on the wishlists of plenty of riders, especially those who wouldn't mind having a positive balance in their bank account after buying a set of carbon wheels.