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Verdict: 
Classic looks with racing performance and weight make this a good choice for your best bike
Weight: 
212g
Selle San Marco Classic Regal Evo Carbon Saddle
8 10

You'll still see the Selle San Marco Regal and Regale saddles on plenty of Pro bikes: it's been a favourite of top riders for many years and Greg Lemond, Mario Cipollini and Tom Boonen have all picked it as their race perch. The Regal Evo is a carbon-reinforced development of the saddle, with both Xsilite titanium and carbon-railed options available. It's a classic-looking saddle but it's also very light and pretty comfortable, if quite a firm ride.

Saddles can get down to under 100g but most racing saddles hover around 200g and this Regal Evo Carbon was 212g on our scales; Selle San Marco claim 190g. That's proper racing-perch weight, almost exactly the same as the £250 Prologo CPC Airing Nago Evo Nack Saddle we tested recently. Although, clearly nowhere the 112g Selle San Marco Mantra Superleggera Saddle. That's almost twice as expensive as this one, though.

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What you get is a nylon shell reinforced with long-strand carbon fibre. On top of that there's a layer of closed-cell biofoam padding, with a microfibre leather-look cover. The Regal Evo gets the trademark rivets around the rear of the saddle, and the front-back profile is flat, with a wide rear and quite strongly curved wings, with the cover extending quite a long way down in the classic style. It's beautifully made and it looks fantastic.

San Marco Classic Regal Evo Carbon Saddle - underside.jpg

San Marco Classic Regal Evo Carbon Saddle - underside.jpg

The rails are carbon fibre, using Selle San Marco's DNA design where the two rails are tied together near the front to increase the torsional stiffness. The tall rails mean that the saddle won't work with seatposts that clamp from the side, so be aware of that.

The ride qualities of the Regal Evo reflect its race heritage. This is a pretty firm saddle, both in the stiffness of the shell and the nature of the padding. If you're used to being told to find and anchor your sit bones by your favourite training program, it certainly makes that job simple. It's not uncomfortable though: there's enough flex in the shell and give in the biofoam to take the worst of the sting out of the tarmac.

Read more: 18 of the best saddles — the seats that improve cycling comfort for men and women

There's no central groove or cutaway, so if you suffer from numbness due to pressure build up then it might not be the saddle for you. I don't generally have a problem with that except on the turbo, and even indoors I found the Regal Evo to be pretty comfortable for an hour. Outdoors longer rides were fine: you're moving around more and there's more opportunity to get out of the saddle. It didn't do well enough in terms of comfort to get on the bike full time, but saddle comfort is a very personal thing; your mileage may vary there.

There's no doubt it looks the bee's knees on the bike, too. Clearly £150 isn't pocket money, but you can spend plenty more than that on saddles that aren't as nicely built and finished as this. It's equally at home on a modern carbon race bike and something a bit more classic: light and firm enough for racing with looks that are good enough to grace pretty much anything. If you like a firm saddle and you want it look just so, this is one for the list.

Verdict

Classic looks with racing performance and weight make this a good choice for your best bike

Read more: 12 of the best high-performance saddles — improve comfort & save weight in one upgrade

road.cc test report

Make and model: Selle San Marco Classic Regal Evo Carbon Saddle

Size tested: Black

Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

A line to which all that has been achieved from years of experience in the bicycle world inspires a selected number of evergreen saddles. A taste of retro meets modern design for the ever-changing life of cycling and the importance of essential details.

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Rail: Carbon

Shell: Carbon Fiber Reinforced

Padding: Biofoam

Cover: Woven microfeel

Length / Width : 278x152 mm

Weight : 190 g.

Level : Carbon fx

Color : Black

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
10/10

It's a beautifully-made saddle.

Rate the product for performance:
 
8/10

Good, firm ride characteristics.

Rate the product for durability:
 
8/10

Wearing well.

Rate the product for weight (if applicable)
 
9/10

Really light for a classic-looking saddle.

Rate the product for comfort (if applicable)
 
7/10

Firm padding with some flex in the wings of the shell. Not quite the perfect shape for me but that's a personal thing.

Rate the product for value:
 
7/10

Considering the build quality and the weight, pretty good.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Really well: a classic-looking saddle but with race DNA and a low weight.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The looks, the weight.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Nothing really. It wasn't quite the perfect shape for me but it might be for you. Deep rails limit seatpost choice.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Not for me

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your score

High quality race saddle with a classic look. Not cheap, but you're getting a well-made thing that'll last. It's light, too.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 43  Height: 189cm  Weight: 92kg

I usually ride: whatever I'm testing...  My best bike is: Kinesis Tripster ATR, Kinesis Aithein

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Experienced

I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mtb, Mountain Bike Bog Snorkelling, track

Dave is a founding father of road.cc and responsible for kicking the server when it breaks. In a previous life he was a graphic designer but he's also a three-time Mountain Bike Bog Snorkelling world champion, and remains unbeaten through the bog. Dave rides all sorts of bikes but tends to prefer metal ones. He's getting old is why.