At road.cc every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.
Good scores are more common than bad, because fortunately good products are more common than bad.
Fabric's Line S Pro Flat saddle is a stubby saddle that performs brilliantly in aggressive aero positions. The short nose with generous padding makes it easy to tuck down in the drops for long periods of time. A nylon base and soft padding create a lot of give that help to isolate you from road buzz, though the soft feel won't be for everyone. This is one for TT, triathlon and slammed race bikes.
The last thing I want when hunched low, fighting either against the wind or to follow a wheel, is the nose of the saddle getting in the way. Fabric's Line S Pro Flat is a stubby unisex saddle that's extra wide at the rear end for more support. I found it incredibly comfortable for getting aero, and ideal for a TT or race bike.
I'll get the very brief negative out of the way as these are personal fit issues. I wasn't a huge fan of the soft feel of the saddle. The flexible nylon base and generous padding, whilst great when in an aggressive position, wasn't for me when sat up during more general riding.
What I love is the combination of the wide rear end and stubby nose. The rear supports you very well, holding you in position, while the short nose is entirely comfortable.
That wide rear end does force you forward on the saddle, so if you prefer sitting back, look for something narrower. While the saddle is designed for aero riding positions, unless you're racing or incredibly determined there are times on long rides where you need to sit up and back. The Line S Pro Flat, though, is too wide to allow easy movement or unimpeded upright pedalling.
I like pressure-relieving channels, and the Fabric Line S Pro has one of the biggest I've ever used. Fabric claims it decreases pressure on the pudendal artery, and certainly I had no numbness issues.
The 9x7mm carbon rails help to bring this saddle in at a respectable 186g, and also help kill road buzz – though it feels that more of the impressive comfort over rough roads comes from the soft padding.
The saddle looks very smart and is finished neatly, with the waterproof microfibre upper bonded straight to the nylon base. It's well put together and I had no issues with wear.
This short, stubby saddle shape isn't new. There are plenty of other options, such as the £105 Specialized Power Expert, £130 Pro Stealth Offroad, the £185 Fizik Vento Argo R1 and the £215 Selle Italia SLR Boost Ti316 Superflow. But while they all come in a variety of specs for base and rail materials, the Fabric Line S Pro gets carbon rails at the lowest price.
Picking a saddle is very personal, and while I got on with the Fabric Line S Pro Flat during fast, aero riding, not everyone will. The wide rear end holds you forward and doesn't allow much movement, while the soft base and padding won't suit everyone either.
Fabric's range of saddles is vast, though, and it has a 60-day money-back 'fit guarantee' that allows you to try the saddle and swap it for another if you don't like it. I strongly recommend heading to a local Fabric supplier to chat about your position and take their advice.
Short, stubby saddle that's great for aero tucks and well-specced for the price
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Fabric Line S Pro Flat unisex saddle
Size tested: 142mm
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?
Fabric says: "Engineered for lightning speed – and comfort – the short design lets you hold an aggressive riding position for longer – letting you fix your seating position and focus on the ride ahead."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Rails: Carbon (9x7mm)
Base: Flexible Nylon
Cover: Waterproof microfibre
Mid rail to saddle topper: 45mm
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
If you're riding in an aero position, it's very comfortable.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Very comfortable in an aero position.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Too wide if you want to back off and sit up.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
Pretty well: you won't find carbon rails on similarly-priced stubby saddles from Specialized, Fizik, Pro or Selle Italia.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes – for head down aero riding
Would you consider buying the product? Yes – for a TT build
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Maybe
Use this box to explain your overall score
It's very good for riding in an aero position and the wide rear end helps keep you forward. The width is a little obstructive should you sit up and back off, however, so while it's limited to aggressive efforts, it's very good at that and an eight.
About the tester
I usually ride: Cannondale Supersix Di2 My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, club rides, general fitness riding, I specialise in the Cafe Ride!
Son of a Marathon runner, Nephew of a National 24hr Champion, the racing genetics have completely passed him by. After joining the road.cc staff in 2016 as a reviewer, Liam quickly started writing feature articles and news pieces. After a little time living in Canada, where he spent most of his time eating poutine, Liam returned with the launch of DealClincher, taking over the Editor role at the start of 2018. At the weekend, Liam can be found racing on the road both in the UK and abroad, though he prefers the muddy fields of cyclocross. To date, his biggest race win is to the front of the cafe queue.