Fulcrum releases two new wheels for wallet-conscious XC and trail riders

Fulcrum Red Zone 5 and Red Metal 5 wheelsets
(Image credit: Fulcrum)

Fulcrum has announced two new budget entry-level Red wheelsets, aimed at XC/marathon and trail riders which seek to hit a sweet spot of performance, durability, and price.

Fulcrum previously added two new wheelsets to its Red Zone range, a carbon and a lightweight alloy option to its best mountain bike wheels. Now it firms up its entry-level offerings with the new Red Zone 5 and Red Metal 5.

The Red Zone 5 features a 27mm internal rim width and is aimed at cross-country and marathon uses, while the 30mm wide Red Metal 5 has been designed for trail riders. Both rims feature a shallow 18.6mm rim depth and use Fulcrum's asymmetrical spoke pattern which is said to give a better balance of spoke tension. 

The rims use Fulcrum‘s 2 Way Fit tubeless design and will come with tubeless rim tape already installed and with tubeless valves included.

Fulcrum Red Zone 5 and Red Metal 5 wheelsets

Red Zone Carbon rims feature a wavey double asymmetric rim design (Image credit: Fulcrum)

The 28-hole hubs use the same hub shell as the pricier wheels but Fulcrum has opted for sealed bearings, rather than cup and cone, which can be micro-adjusted with a specific adjustment ring.

The wheels weigh in at a respectable 1840g (claimed weight) for the narrower option, while the Red Metal 5's wider rims only add on an extra 50g. There is a rider weight limit on these, the maximum total weight of the system (rider and bike) is 125 kg. 

They are only available in 29er Boost sizing but are compatible with HG, XD, and Microspline freehub standards. Pricing starts at $465 / £389.99 for the Red Zone 5 or $489 / £409.99 for the Red Metal 5 wheels and will be available from today.

Graham Cottingham
Senior reviews writer, Bike Perfect

Graham is all about riding bikes off-road. Based in Edinburgh he has some of the best mountain biking and gravel riding in the UK right on his doorstep. With almost 20 years of riding experience, he has dabbled in downhill, enduro and, most recently, gravel racing. Not afraid of a challenge, Graham has embraced bikepacking over the last few years and likes nothing more than strapping some bags to his bike and covering big miles to explore Scotlands wildernesses. When he isn’t shredding the gnar in the Tweed Valley, sleeping in bushes or tinkering with bikes, he is writing tech reviews for Bike Perfect and the muckier side of Cyclingnews 


Rides: Canyon Strive, 24 Bicycles Le Toy 3, Surly Steamroller

Height: 177cm

Weight: 71kg