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2012 Mavic Cosmic Carbone Ultimate Wheelset
The Mavic Cosmic Carbone Ultimate is indisputably Mavic's ultimate wheelset. The 40mm rim depth is unique. While it could be argued that shallower would be even lighter and deeper would be more aero, Mavic decided this was the perfect depth for road racing where a careful blend of these attributes creates the best overall road racing performance.
The rear hub is also unique for its aluminum body and the ability to true the rear wheel. There are tiny steel spokes at the end of the radial non-drive spokes. They're attached to spoke nipples that exit from the hub flange.
These nipples can be adjusted with a standard spoke wrench. However, the spokes on the rear drive-side and in the front wheel are epoxied into place on the hub flanges. This means the rear can be trued to an extent, but the front wheel cannot. With most wheels, there are spoke holes at both ends of the rim. That isn't the case with the Cosmic Carbone Ultimate; like Lightweight wheels, the Ultimate's tire bed is smooth, no holes. This allows the carbon bed to be both lighter and stronger. It also means the rim is totally sealed from the elements. No water can be forced inside the rim, even on the wettest days.
The Ultimates are breathtakingly light, and they're still built for the rigors of everyday riding; Mavic designed them to pass the same stress tests all other Mavic wheels undergo. And they're aerodynamic to boot. They transcend the historical precedent of Mavic's road wheels being either about light or aero, but never both. The profiled spokes are more aero than traditional bladed spokes, and they're 35% lighter and more than twice as stiff as a 15 gauge spoke. Thanks to the integrated spokes, the bladed flanges on the all-carbon front hub have an ultra low profile, and the front wheel has very little drag. According to Mavic's testing, the Ultimate is a whopping 59% more aero than the heavier, shallower, more flexible Ksyrium SL.They also address the chief complaint about light weight wheels -- they may be light but they're incredibly stiff.