For the last 20 years or so, mountain bike pedals have stayed roughly the same with more or less two basic designs, namely Shimano’s SPD and Time’s ATAC. Now, after years of research and development, Speedplay has finally brought its highly anticipated mountain bike-specific pedal to market, bringing the benefits road cyclists and triathletes have enjoyed — highly adjustable float, dual-sided entry, excellent cornering clearance and a large pedaling platform — to the world of dirt and trails.
While Speedplay’s Frog can be used for riding off road, the Syzr was designed from the ground up to be a mountain bike-specific pedal. Instead of simply taking one of their lollipop-style pedals and making it mountain capable, Speedplay utilized an entirely new design. The big challenge was dealing with the heavy grit and grime that mountain bikers encounter on the trail, which make it difficult to clip in and out of pedals. In development, this was a major obstacle for the Syzr, which utilizes a much tighter-fitting interface between cleat and pedal than traditional mountain bike pedals. After testing a number of different materials, Speedplay settled on four ceramic “rolling cams” positioned in each corner of the cleat. The cams reduce metal-on-metal friction and allow for easy entry in and out of the pedal — regardless of trail conditions. The cleat also features a “V”-shaped channel to help guide it into connection with the pedal. In testing, this was much easier than an eggbeater-style pedal like the Crank Brothers Candy.
Like all other mountain bike pedals, the Syzr is two sided for easy clipping-in on awkward starts. They are on par or lighter than Crank Brothers’ Candy 7, Time’s ATAC MX series pedals and Shimano’s XTR Trail SPD — for a similar price point, but also offer increased performance.
If you are looking for a new pair of pedals and demand the highest performance out of your gear, the Syzrs are the best on the market. They are a welcome change of pace in a segment of the mountain bike industry that has been largely stagnant for the better part of 20 years. speedplay.com
Weight (Stainless Steel): 312 grams per pair
Weight (Titanium): 275 grams per pair
Designed In: San Diego, California
Key Material: Ceramic bearings