MT Zoom Ultralight gravel handlebar review

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Rachael Wight's picture

Editor here at off-road.cc, Rachael is happiest on two wheels. Partial to a race or two Rachael also likes getting out into the hills with a big bunch of mates. In the past Rachael has written for publications such as, Enduro Mountain Bike Magazine, Mountain Biking UK, Bike Radar, New Zealand Mountain Biker and was also the online editor for Spoke magazine in New Zealand too. For as long as she's been riding, she has been equally happy getting stuck into a kit review as she is creating stories or doing the site admin. When she's not busy with all the above she's roasting coffee or coaching mountain biking in the Forest of Dean. 

Product reviews

The Ultralight gravel handlebar from MT Zoom is one of the lightest off-road drop handlebars on the market. It has a great shape for fast, competitive riding and nicely designed internal cable routing, but it's only available in the one width.

This handlebar weighs an incredibly low 195g, and only a few rivals claim to come close: the 3T Superghiaia, for example, is 202g in the 42cm width. For comparison, the budget alloy Genetic Drove weighs 330g, which is ball park for the basic aluminium bars found on the majority of bikes.

The MT Zoom Ultralight Gravel handlebar does have a rider weight limit of 100kg (15st, 10lb), but at least there are no limits on aero extensions or baggage – something else that's common with lightweight handlebars.

2021 MT Zoom gravel handlebar-4.jpg

Currently the Ultralight is only available in one width – 42cm – so if you prefer a wider (or narrower) bar you need to look elsewhere. Why only one? Its aimed pretty unflinchingly at racing, where a reasonably narrow position is often preferable.

2021 MT Zoom gravel handlebar.jpg

It's all focused towards going faster, with a 78mm reach and reasonably deep, 129mm drop. The drops flare out 12 degrees – as do many other gravel handlebars – meaning the width at the end of the drops is actually 49cm.

2021 MT Zoom gravel handlebar-6.jpg

The handlebars allow full internal routing, including via a stem port on the few framesets it might suit.

2021 MT Zoom gravel handlebar-5.jpg

There's also routing for a Shimano Di2 junction box, and good-sized ports each side of the stem for the shifter and brake cables. So whatever groupset you have and whatever brakes or drivetrain you run, the routing should work, and there are guides inserted as standard.

2021 MT Zoom gravel handlebar-3.jpg

What this bar lacks is any kind of alignment markings. You just have to hope you have the shifters level and stem perfectly central before taping up the bars... either that or break out the tape measure, anyway.

2021 MT Zoom gravel handlebar-2.jpg

I really like how the circular section extends across the entire flat top, giving you loads of space for clamping on mounts for lights, computers and everything else.

The reasonably deep 129mm drop won't suit everyone, but if you prefer a more aggressive, lower position these will work well, and I find them very comfortable for longer rides. The 12 degree flare gives enough extra width in the drops to improve control on rough downhills, too.

Overall

The MT Zoom gravel handlebar is an exceptionally light design that, while it's fairly agressive for racing, proves comfortable for everyday riding. While not cheap, it does offer good value when compared directly against other lightweight carbon handlebars... so long the single width available suits you, anyway.

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