Here’s the perch on which we’ll be resting our posterior in the weeks ahead.
The Fizik Arione VSX is a development of the Italian brand’s long established racing platform, the Arione. The development in question is the introduction of a ‘relief zone’ to remove pressure from delicate areas. It’s a channel that runs from nose to tail and reaches a depth of some 20mm at its deepest point, which occurs just ahead of the ‘wing’, or above the ‘k’ in the Fizik logo pictured.
Like all Fizik saddles, there are three shapes available with the VSX design. The dimensions and profile change in accordance with the rider’s flexibility. Fizik demarcate flexibility with animal symbols: snake denotes a flexible rider, for whom they recommend their ‘flat and narrow saddle’, the Arione. ‘Relief zone’ versions of the Antares saddle (for ‘chameleons’ – riders less flexible than ‘snakes’), and the Aliante saddle (for ‘bulls’, riders described by Fizik as ‘rigid’) are also available.
Further options can be found in the rail. There are two options for each: the lighter, carbon braided rail, or a chromoly rail that Fizik call Ki:um. Ours is the latter, equipped with some nicely finished metalwork with a short, 5cm rule stencilled on the right-hand rail. We weighed our perch at 262g, or 12g more than the 250g claimed by Fizik. It’s a significantly weightier perch than its two predecessors in the RCUK test rig (a 165g, carbon-railed PRO Falcon, and a Selle San Marco Concor with a rail fashioned from a mix of silicone, titanium, and carbon, that tipped our scale at 191g), and while we’re not quite comparing apples with apples, even the carbon-railed incarnation of the Aliante VSX weighs in at a claimed 225g.
The base, however, is “carbon reinforced” and an elegantly moulded affair, finished with a Fizik name plate at the rear, which can be removed to attach a Fizik seatpack. Turn it over, and you’ll find a firmly padded surface, tastefully finished with Fizik branding in silver, and three red ‘ribs’ of diminishing length on each of the ‘thigh glides’. We measured the base at 130mm at its widest point, a dimension that meets the billing of ‘narrow’. It’s 300mm long.
We’ll be fitting the Fizik Arione VSX to the RCUK Test Rig and riding out with it beneath us in the weeks ahead. Check back soon for a full review.