Huh, apparently there are gravel specific saddles now? Also apparently, a gravel saddle is the thing I’m missing because I’ve never gotten air like that coming over a hill. Good thing fi’zi:k has me covered. Or, I guess more specifically, CMA?
Unless I’m missing something it looks a lot like the Terra Argo X1 is just a wider (?) carbon railed road saddle. There’s no magic to that, carbon rails are generally going to be be more compliant than a metal railed saddle. Which is exactly why I have carbon railed saddles on all my road/gravel bikes. It’s just a better experience for my bum.
That’s not to say that there isn’t space for gravel saddles in the mix. Personally, I think the defining feature that would separate it from a otherwise fungible road saddle would be how easy it was to clean, or even better, make the thing dirt-phobic.
Otherwise, this Terra Argo X1 really just looks like a Power clone (which Specialized markets as a road & gravel saddle) to me.
- Argo: versatile short-nose saddle that encourages stability and relieves pressure on sensitive areas
- X1: a combination of a ride-compliant carbon reinforced nylon shell and carbon rail
- Mobius Rail: Closed loop design for added strength and weight distribution
- Wingflex: The shell’s side edges flex and adapt to a rider’s inner leg movement
- Type 2 foam: Progressive cushioning, with a lower compression modulus
- Terra: All-terrain series designed to take you beyond your boundaries
- Intended use: Gravel
- Concepts: This is a product of the fizik Concepts programme, a cross-disciplinary collaboration of leading industry experts and academics carrying out research and analysis on technology, design, physiology and bike-fitting in search of ways to improve cycling performance.
The Specialized Power looks good although it seems to be a short saddle, which I’m not a huge fan of.
How do you feel about the 3D printed Mirror saddles for gravel? Awfully expensive, but if they are as comfortable as people claim, maybe worth it. I would be a little concerned with grime getting inside the lattice for gravel riding though…
Also not a huge fan of short saddles. I use Specialized Toupé saddles on most of my bikes, including the gravel ones. Works great for me, but saddles are such a personal fit item it’s really hard to make solid recommendations.
IMO, 3D printed saddles have massive potential if they actually do the thing that OEMs claim. The grime factor is real, so I’m not sure I would risk my first try with a 3D printed saddle on the gravel bike unless it’s possible to really clean the thing.
I have a 2015-era Toupe on my road bike and it’s super comfortable. Specialized doesn’t list this model on their website anymore. I wonder if the Phenom or the Romin are good replacements.
That’s so disappointing… TIL
The shape of the Romin seems closer, but it also looks to come up at the back more than the Toupé (although that could just be the photos I’ve been able to find). Might need to take a trip down to the Specialized store one of these days to have a look in person.