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The Look Keo Classic 3s are good mid-level pedals that offer a decent base for power transfer, have an easy-to-use adjustable mechanism, and are well made and robust.
I've used the Keo Classic 2 pedals for the past few years, and one of the first things you notice is the different shape, which has changed dramatically. The new pedals are more angular with a wider contact area in the centre – the edges of the Classic 2s are relatively curved and the entire pedal body is slimmer, with only a slight taper from centre to toe. According to UK distributor Zyrofisher, this change in shape is to bring the pedals in line with those higher up the Look range, as well as to create a wider contact area in the centre of the pedal.
This wider contact area creates a good platform for power transfer. I found I could put the power down easily, even when using a set of 9-degree cleats that were moving around fairly freely. There is a slight improvement on the previous pedals, with a claimed '400mm2 surface area which is almost 40% more than the competition'.
I cannot verify the numbers, but one of the key reasons for doing this is comfort: spreading power transfer over a larger area is meant to decrease hot spots on longer rides. This isn't something I tend to suffer from, but I certainly didn't notice it while using these, so it might work...
The pedals attach to the cranks through an oversize steel spindle, tightened with an 8mm Allen key; as with all Look pedals, you can't use a pedal spanner. They are simple enough to fit and once properly on leave 53mm from crank to pedal and a stack height of 15.7 mm: no forcing your feet into strange positions.
To add resilience, Look has fitted the spindle in a new way internally, with a needle bearing cartridge within the spindle itself. Look says: "The Kéo Classic 3 spindle is made up of an oversized steel axle with miniature ball bearings (12 mm inside x 18 mm outside) and a needle bearing cartridge for improved wear resistance." It also claims to have performed "a rotational test of 2 million cycles at 100tr/min with a load of 90kg on the center of the pedal and an eccentric rotation (creating a shock on each rotation)". This is to guarantee longevity and robustness. I can't vouch for this from the limited review time I had, but I can confirm that the bearings worked well with a smooth rotation throughout the review period, with no issues even when used on muddy lanes.
As with the previous Classic pedals, they have an adjustable float from both the bolt at the rear of the pedal and from the three different cleat options in the range: 0° (black), 4.5° (grey) or 9° (red). The pedals themselves come with grey cleats, but I also used them with 9° cleats and they worked well. Engaging and disengaging from the pedals is simple and the mechanism has a sturdy hold and a reactive click to let you know you are clipped in properly. They also have a decent degree of adaptability, with some fairly destroyed overshoes not impacting on clipping in, despite the shreds of material sometimes getting in the way of the mechanism at the front.
At 276g for the pair, they are almost exactly the same weight as the Classic 2s. Shimano's 105 5800 pedals, which are more than twice the price, weigh 11g per pedal more – which shows that the Looks are strong in this area, despite their low price.
You can buy cheaper pedals, but £40 is a really good price, especially bearing in mind that they are genuine Look units; the Classic 2s had an RRP of £64.99, so these are 38.5% cheaper than their predecessor.
Overall I think the Classic 3s are really good pedals. They look good on the bike, perform well and have a good contact area for better power transfer. Many of the internal improvements of the pedals cannot be accurately tested in a limited time review, given that they are intended to increase longevity, but from what I've seen these are a good upgrade to a trusted beginner/intermediate pedal design.
A great update to what was already a reliable and sturdy offering
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Look Keo Classic 3 Road Clipless Pedal
Size tested: n/a
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 pedal that can be used by a variety of riders, from beginners to advanced.
Look says: "Simple to use, it is possible to adjustment the cleat entry/release tension to low for an easy clip out. Its large and wide contact surface provides excellent pedaling stability."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Beginner to advanced
9/16 X 20 mm
1 ball bearing, 1 needle bearing cartridge
PEDAL STACK HEIGHT
DISTANCE PEDAL SPINDLE / CRANK ARM
CONTACT SURFACE AREA
8 to 12 adjustable spring
Kéo Grip Cleats
0 °, 4.5 ° or 9 ° according to the cleat color (Black, Grey, Red)
140 gr (348 gr per pair with cleats and screws)
A pair of Grey Kéo Grip cleats + screws
Well made, they spin well, the bearings are good and the mechanism is reassuringly responsive.
Performed really well, large contact area helps when putting the power down and clipping in is simple and secure.
No durability issues at all during the review, and if Look is to be believed they are likely to last a long time.
Not the lightest, but excellent for the price.
Really good value, one of the best you can get at this price point.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
They performed very well, good spin, nice mechanism and secure.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The price is amazing all things considered.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Not a lot not to like.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your score
Very good all round – price, performance, weight... A clear 8.
About the tester
I usually ride: Cannondale Supersix Evo 6 My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,
George spends his days helping companies deal with their cycling commuting challenges with his company Cycling for Work. He has been writing for Road.cc since 2014.
When he is not writing about cycling, he is either out on his bike cursing not living in the countryside or boring anybody who will listen about the latest pro peloton/cycling tech/cycling infrastructure projects.