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Raise your hand if you’ve been riding the same brand/style of pedals for a decade or more. There seems to be little reason to change if those pedals have worked well for so long, right?
But modern pedals are certainly lighter and offer more power transfer thanks to wide platforms, stronger materials, and technology that didn’t exist the last time you swapped out your cleats.
With that in mind, Time redesigned its Xpro 10 pedals with the ultimate goals of improved strength, lighter weight, and better power transfer. And the French company also redesigned its Iclic system, “to allow for a more positive cleat engagement.”
The surface area is larger than that of the XPro’s predecessor, the Xpresso. This helps create a larger contact point between your shoe and the pedal, which — in theory — improves power transfer. The XPro is about 25mm larger than the Xpresso. And Time says the stack height is a low 13.5 millimeters to keep your shoe’s sole as close as possible to the pedal axle center.
In order to improve aerodynamic performance, Time developed a smooth, fairing-like bottom. It is carbon, as is the rest of the body construction, to keep weight to a minimum.
The pedal’s release tension can be changed via an adjustable carbon blade. It’s quick and easy to tune with just the turn of a small screw. The three-position adjustment goes from easy release (intended for touring cyclists) to hard release (for racers). For testing, we kept our pedals on the middle setting.
The cleats are clearly marked left and right, but swapping them to the opposite shoe will increase your Q factor by about three millimeters if you require a wider pedaling stance.
Time says its Iclic engagement system is “pre-opened,” which essentially means you’re not fighting spring tension when you push your foot down to clip into the pedal. This could also make disengaging your foot from the pedal easier.
In practice, it works wonderfully. We found ourselves getting into and out of our pedals more quickly and easily than we would with other pedal systems, more consistently. While it’s hard to determine whether more surface area actually is improving power transfer, or if the smooth bottom is more aero, the entry/release was an easily quantifiable benefit.
There was very little cleat rocking to speak of, too. The interface between pedal and cleat felt solid both in and out of the saddle, and while there’s some float to help save your knees, all other movement feels extremely limited. Perhaps this is only a feel thing, but it certainly seemed like the pedals were effectively transferring power from the pedal stroke.
After a couple hundred miles the pedals don’t look any worse for the wear, aside from some scuffed lettering. It will take a full season of riding or more to get a true sense of how these pedals stack up in the long run, but early impressions are very good.
They don’t come cheap, and this is perhaps the biggest drawback to the Xpro pedal line. Our Xpro 10 pedals run $250 and come equipped with a hollow stainless steel spindle and carbon body. For $400, the Xpro 12 pedals offer a titanium spindle. And for a whopping $600, The Xpro 15 pedals come with a hollow titanium spindle and CeramicSpeed bearings. Compare those prices to Shimano’s top of the line Dura-Ace 9100 pedals, which cost $280.
If price is no object and you’re after a remarkably stable and easy to use pedal, it’s hard to beat the Xpro 10 pedals. They’re light too, on par with top-of-the-line offerings from other brands. But the cost is certainly tough to swallow, so if you’re the cost-conscious type, these may not be up your alley.