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The new-for-2020 Edco Maloja is an excellent deep-section, 'everyday, all weather' wheelset. It's also very competitively priced for such a good quality pair of carbon hoops, and the braking performance is up there with the best I've used.
The last set of wheels I tested from Edco was the big ticket Brocon, a full carbon fibre wheelset (including hubs and spokes) designed for disc brakes that cost a cool £2,900!
The Malojas sit at the other end of the market at £749.99 (currently £649.99) but still exude the same levels of quality, both in terms of build and ride.
At 50mm deep they provide some aerodynamic advantage and certainly feel lively above 23mph, where the gains are more noticeable. On the flat they roll along very smoothly, and they also give a plush-feeling ride so if you are out for a long one you aren't getting battered by an overly harsh carbon layup.
The 24-spoke rear and 20-spoke front build provides plenty of lateral stiffness paired with the 21mm internal width rim. The front is laced radially and the rear two-cross on the drive side and radially on the non-drive side. The spokes are from Sapim, aero-bladed with a j-bend at the hub.
Hard efforts when sprinting or climbing achieved no rubbing noises from any rim/brake pad contact, and as they only weigh around 1,600g (2,270g with tape, tube and tyres) they feel sprightly when you ask them to start spinning quicker.
Freehub engagement is pretty much instantaneous, something that you can feel when trackstanding at the lights, so when you want to power off the Malojas just go.
One place where carbon fibre rims can be a bit of a letdown, especially in the wet, is braking performance. The last few years have seen big improvements, though, with manufacturers adding various materials into the carbon resin mix to give a bit more of a modulated feel to slowing down, like you get on an alloy rim.
Edco's carbon blend is spot on and these are some of the best braking wheels I've ridden in both the wet and dry. In the wet you still need that wheel revolution to clear the water off like any rim, but once that's done the pads grip well and bring you to a stop quickly without feeling at all grabby.
In the dry, the control you have over the braking is brilliant and gives total confidence should you need to come to a halt sharpish.
The rims are tubeless ready, and the width gives the 25mm tyres that ours came fitted with a nice rounded shape. It does increase the nominal tyre width by about a couple of millimetres, so you might need to bear that in mind if frame or brake calliper clearance is tight.
Another thing I was impressed with was how little the rims are affected by crosswinds. I was riding these back in the winter through the stormy season, and while I could feel a little slap from a gust past a gateway, on the whole the u-shaped profile doesn't get twitchy at all regardless of the angle of the wind.
As I said, ours came fitted with tyres, a pair of Vittoria Corsa Graphene 2.0s, and these were easy to get on and off. Trying others I've got knocking around from the likes of Schwalbe and Panaracer also went on fine, and some tubeless tyres popped onto the bead without issue.
The alloy-bodied hubs ran smoothly throughout the wet and dirty test period and showed no signs of noise or grumbling, which is impressive considering the amount of floodwater on the roads at the time.
Our test models came with a Shimano/SRAM freehub but they are available with a Campagnolo freehub too.
When it comes to value, it's a lot of wheel for £749.99. They compare very well to others such as Scope's R4c which are around 50g lighter but much pricier at £1,298.
Liam was really impressed with the Prime BlackEdition 50 Carbons – again, a similar sort of weight, and he was also a fan of the braking just as I was with the Edcos. They now have an rrp of £899.99 (currently £599), which still makes the Maloja's £749.99 rrp look impressive.
The very good Hunt 50 Carbon Wide Aero rim brake wheels are also around the same weight and share the Edcos' build quality (I tested the 3650s back in 2017). They currently come in at £759 although, as I mentioned earlier, Edco is currently selling the Malojas for just £649.99.
Overall, the Edco Maloja is a great set of wheels at sensible money, whether you are looking for your first set of carbon hoops or fancy a quality upgrade for your race bike.
Excellent carbon wheelset that performs across the board at a good price
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Edco Maloja Wheelset
Size tested: 50mm deep
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?
Edco says, "New for 2020! The all new 50mm Maloja wheelset, All day, everyday, all weather wheel set. 50mm deep, tubeless compatible.
"Competitively priced bringing EDCO performance to the masses.
"At just £749.99 this is the perfect upgrade and entry into the world of carbon fibre wheels and high end components. Giving your older bike a new lease of life, or upgrading the off the shelf wheels on your newest purchase."
I think Edco has created an excellent wheelset at a great price.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Weight: Front 701 g : Rear 892 g
Rim brake only,
Inner width: 21mm
24h rear hub, 20h front hub. J bend Sapim spokes
Edco lists weight for the front as 701g, and 892g for the rear – the weight we've shown at the top of the review is with tyres fitted.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
A surprisingly good 'jack of all trades' performance for a deep-section wheelset.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Great braking performance.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
They are cheaper than many other really good wheels like the Prime and Scope offerings I mentioned in the review, and are still competitively priced against the Hunts.
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 overall score
With their quality, ride performance and braking surface, I'd be giving these a very decent score even if they cost over a grand. The fact that they are a fair chunk under that means they are very impressive indeed.
About the tester
I usually ride: This month's test bike My best bike is: B'Twin Ultra CF draped in the latest bling test components
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed,
As part of the Tech Hub here at F-At Digital, our senior product reviewer Stu uses the knowledge gained from putting well over a 1,000 products through their paces (including hundreds of bikes) to write in-depth reviews of a huge range of kit. After first throwing his leg over a race bike back in 2000, Stu's ridden more than 160,000 miles on road, time-trial, track, and gravel bikes, and while he's put his racing days behind him he still likes to smash the pedals rather than take things easy. Although, as he spends a fair bit of his time reviewing ebikes these days he's becoming an expert in letting the motor take the strain. He's also waiting for 23mm race tyres to make a comeback!