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At just 197g, the Selle Italia SLR Lady Superflow Saddle is a seriously lightweight option aimed at female riders looking for high performance, which it delivers alongside decent levels of comfort despite its overtly firm character.
First off, a saddle is an incredibly personal thing, and one man or woman's posterior is very different from another in terms of what is comfortable and what's not. That said, the SLR Boost Lady Superflow has quite a few characteristics that will appeal to everyone.
For starters, it's an extremely lightweight saddle, designed for fast riding over mid-range distances (Selle Italia places its focus squarely within its granfondo distance category (5/5), 3/5 for medio fondo and touring, and nil points for endurance).
The saddle is available in two widths, S (130mm) and L (145mm) – both are 248mm in length – and is made with a smooth synthetic Fibra-Tek cover, gel padding and TI316 7mm diameter rails. (As Simon pointed out in his review of the men's model, TI316 isn't titanium, but titanium-stabilised steel.) I tested the narrower of the two.
On the bike, it looks very smart, with a sporty look which is backed up by its performance. On my first ride, I had a brief moment of panic at how firm the saddle felt, but the combination of an excellent shape, pressure relief channel and the gel padding made it surprisingly comfortable for four-hour-plus rides.
It's an undeniably firm seat, and those who appreciate extra padding under the sit bones may want to look elsewhere, but I found that the flared section flexed nicely in use, and without diminishing the power transfer when I put some effort in.
The shape shows just how much experience Selle Italia has in producing a good saddle. The smooth, contoured structure gives incredible support to the sit bones, and yet no pressure at all on sensitive areas.
The SLR Boost Lady Superflow is a much higher performance saddle than Selle Italia's Diva Gel Flow Saddle but it shares a lot of the design background and, ultimately, the comfort, albeit in a more lightweight, pared down, firmer option.
I might have been slightly apprehensive about longer rides on this when I first tested it, but it very quickly became my go-to saddle when combined with a high-quality pair of shorts. I found that pairing crucial for such a firm seat, and it worked well.
At £189.99 it's at the upper end of the saddle pricing spectrum, but compares okay with saddles of a similar weight and performance level, particularly other Italian models.
You can buy similarly lightweight saddles for less though, such as the Specialized Women's Romin Evo Pro with MIMIC, now £165 since Emma tested it in May.
Overall, the SLR Boost Lady Superflow is well made and nicely finished, and oozes good quality engineering and the company's saddle-making pedigree, making it a good investment if a supportive, firmer saddle is your thing.
High-quality lightweight saddle offering excellent support and good comfort despite a firmer ride than some
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Selle Italia SLR Boost Lady Superflow
Size tested: S - 130mm
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?
Aimed at female riders looking for a high performance, lightweight but supportive saddle.
Selle Italia says, 'The SLR Boost Lady Superflow, with rail in TI316 Ø7mm, has been designed and conceived exclusively to adapt to the needs of the female customers. Greater gel padding, combined with the Superflow technology, ensures unprecedented pedalling comfort.'
A very supportive and surprisingly comfortable firmer saddle.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Selle Italia lists:
Weight: S 198 g - L 206 g
Rail: TI 316 Tube Ø7 mm
S 130x248 mm
L 145x248 mm
Very well made and nicely finished with good quality materials.
Supportive and comfortable.
The synthetic upper is smooth and hardwearing.
Heavier than the men's model, but still a very light saddle.
Firmer than many but extremely supportive and well designed. Coupled with good quality shorts, it delivers excellent levels of comfort.
Definitely on the expensive side but on a par with similar designs.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Performed very well as a low weight, high performance saddle offering good comfort.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Comfort, support, quality.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Quite firm thanks to the lightweight gel padding. Price.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
It's at the upper end of the spectrum, but on a par with saddles of a similar weight and performance level, particularly other Italian models. It's quite a bit cheaper than the men's equivalent saddle in the range, a bit pricier than some similarly lightweight saddles such as the Specialized Women's Romin Evo Pro with MIMIC at £165, but comparable to the (fellow Italian) Fizik Vento Argo R1 at £184.99.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Definitely, particularly if on offer.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
It's very good – a very well designed, comfortable and supportive lightweight saddle.
About the tester
I usually ride: Boardman Hybrid Fi My best bike is: Specialized Ruby Elite
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, touring, sportives, general fitness riding, mtb,
Lara has been riding bikes for longer than she'd care to admit, and writing about them nearly as long. Since 2009 she has been working as part of the road.cc review team whilst championing women's cycling on the side, most notably via two years as editor of the, sadly now defunct, UK's first and only women's cycling mag, erm, Women's Cycling.
Believing fervently that cycling will save the world, she wishes that more people would just ride a bike and be pleasant to each other.
She will ride anything with two wheels, occasionally likes to go fast, definitely likes to go far and is always up for a bit of exploring somewhere new and exciting.