Let's get one thing out of the way: yes, the Campagnolo Bora Ultra 35 Tubular Wheelset costs over $4000. Now that you're sure your eyes aren't deceiving you, let's try and answer the obvious question: why?
The simple answer is that the Bora Ultra 35 is a pro-level race-day rim, as in "I'm leading the Tour into the final few days, so I'd better go all out with my wheel selection today." Tubular rims are incredibly light and provide unbeatable feel on the road, and with a rim depth of just 35mm, 15mm less than the classic Bora 50, the Bora 35 cuts down even more weight, so there's nothing slowing down the rotation of your tires.
Shortening the depth of the rim also reduces material and corresponding weight. Not only is the Bora Ultra 35 lighter than almost any other wheel, but it's slightly wider than most (24.
2mm), which actually means less rolling resistance and improved aerodynamics compared to standard skinnier wheels (trust us, it's science). Less paradoxically, wider wheels also provide better grip and cornering, and they accommodate wider tires for an even plusher and more durable ride.
Size isn't everything, though. The Bora 35 employs Campagnolo's legendary CULT bearings, which help add more power to every stroke -- indeed, Campagnolo calls them the lowest-friction bearings in the world, and we're not inclined to doubt them.
Carbon wheels are also notoriously finicky with regards to braking, but Campagnolo has employed its 3Diamant braking surface, which actually uses diamonds to polish the brake track, to increase friction and decrease pulsing. It's also claimed to reduce wet braking by up to 40%, and dry braking by 20%.
Finally, long flanges add extra stiffness to the G3 spokes, which are also engineered to help absorb road vibration.
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