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Fizik Aliante Gamma Kium Review

A comfortable, affordable saddle great for long-distance cruising.
Fizik Aliante Gamma Kium
Top Pick Award
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Price:  $120 List | Check Price at Amazon
Pros:  Lightweight, supportive, comfortable on long rides
Cons:  No pressure relief channel, limited colors
Manufacturer:   Fi'zi:k
By Nick Bruckbauer & Ryan Baham  ⋅  Oct 24, 2019
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82
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#2 of 14
  • Comfort - 30% 8
  • Performance - 30% 8
  • Versatility - 20% 9
  • Durability - 10% 9
  • Weight - 10% 7

Our Verdict

For the second year in a row, the Fizik Aliante Gamma Kium takes home our Top Pick for Cruising. Combining an optimal mix of comfortable padding, a stiff yet forgiving shell, and high-quality materials and construction in a reasonably lightweight package, this saddle performs well in a variety of riding conditions and scores well across the board. The slightly rounded profile of this seat is ideal for sitting and cruising, but its supportive shell and firm padding make it capable of keeping up when the pace abruptly changes or the terrain turns uphill. Weekend warriors and road racers alike will appreciate the all-around performance and comfort of this saddle.


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Pros Lightweight, supportive, comfortable on long ridesLightweight, comfortable, durableLightweight, comfortable, reasonably pricedRelieves pressure, good price, texture prevents slipHuge pressure relief channel, supports variable riding positions, good for long rides
Cons No pressure relief channel, limited colorsNo anatomic relief channel, lacks versatilityUnique shape may not be for everyoneSaddle can stick, excess padding, priceyPricey, can alter riding form, can cause pressure points
Bottom Line A comfortable, affordable saddle great for long-distance cruising.A high-end, ultra lightweight racing saddle that blends comfort and performance.A high-performing saddle that provides lightweight comfort and a unique design.A sweet cut-out model with generous padding and a sleek racing design.A unique saddle that maximizes anatomic relief and minimizes pressure on long rides.
Rating Categories Fizik Aliante Gamma Kium Fabric Scoop Prologo Dimension Terry Fly TI Selle SMP Pro
Comfort (30%)
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
7
Performance (30%)
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
9
Versatility (20%)
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
5
10
0
8
10
0
8
Durability (10%)
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
6
10
0
9
Weight (10%)
10
0
7
10
0
10
10
0
10
10
0
8
10
0
5
Specs Fizik Aliante... Fabric Scoop Prologo Dimension Terry Fly TI Selle SMP Pro
Dimensions L 265 mm, W 142 mm L 282 mm, W 142 mm L 245 mm, W 143 mm L 277 mm, W 140mm L 278 mm, W 148 mm
Weight (grams) 252 g 195 g 191 g 236 g 337 g
Target Use (mountain, road, etc.) Road Road Road, Mountain, Cyclocross Road Road
Rail Material Alloy Carbon fiber Tirox 316 Titanium alloy Steel
Seat Cover Material Synthetic Waterproof microfiber Microfiber Leather Leather
Shell Material Nylon Carbon Reinforced with Twin Flex™ center Nylon, PU foam Light foam Unspecified Composite Nylon, Carbon Reinforced
Anatomical Cut Out or Channel No No Yes, full cut out Yes, cut out Yes, full cut out

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Fizik Aliante Gamma Kium makes its mark in our lineup with high-end materials, an ideal blend of stiffness and comfort, and a reasonably low weight. It scores well across the board and doesn't have any glaring weaknesses. With a price tag that's much lower than other top-end competitors, it also provides affordable access to top quality design and performance. Continue reading below to see how it compares to the other top products that we tested.

Performance Comparison


The Aliante Gamma Kium is great for cruising down on the flats or up in the hills.
The Aliante Gamma Kium is great for cruising down on the flats or up in the hills.

Comfort


Our testers think that the Aliante Gamma Kium is one of the most comfortable premium performance saddles that we tested. It uses Fizik's Twin Flex carbon-reinforced nylon shell, which combines a stiff outer frame with a flexible carbon layer along the middle sweet spot, which provides excellent support yet allows just enough flex to relieve some of the pressure on your soft tissue. The padding is thick enough to cushion the sit bones without being too soft to sap away energy and provides a nice stable platform for aggressive attacks and harder efforts.


The Aliante Gamma scores near the top of the charts in this rating category because of its blend of comfort and support. While the advanced shell design aims to blend stiffness with a bit of flexibility and forgiveness, riders who normally struggle with pressure or discomfort on their soft tissues may want to consider a model with an anatomic pressure relief cutout. While this saddle does an admiral job of balancing comfort and forgiveness, an actual anatomic cutout will likely do a better job of maximizing the relief.

The Aliante Gamma Kium provides all-day comfort for those long cruises or uphill grinds.
The Aliante Gamma Kium provides all-day comfort for those long cruises or uphill grinds.

Performance


Despite the flexible central sweet spot on the Aliante Gamma, there's still excellent power transfer, thanks to the Twin Flex technology that combines a stiff carbon-reinforced shell with the more comfortable central carbon layer. The Kium rails (Fizik's proprietary rail material) also provide a nice balance of stiffness with just enough flex to give you comfortable, responsive control in the saddle. This model also uses a smooth Microtex cover with designated glide pads along the nose to limit chafing and friction, something we appreciated in the rain and on hot, sweaty rides.



On longer days in the saddle, it can sometimes feel good to move around on the platform to a slightly different seating position to give your undercarriage a little bit of relief. On the Aliante Gamma, there's a smaller sweet spot for your rear end to sit, and because of the shape of the taper from the tail to the nose, tends to rub and chafe you a bit more if you're at the far rear end of the saddle. We found that saddles with a longer, narrower nose and midsection with a wider rear platform tend to do a good job of allowing an efficient pedal stroke in a wider range of seating positions.

The Twin Flex technology on the Aliante Gamma combines a stiff carbon frame with a softer carbon midsection for a nice blend of comfort and performance.
The ideal density foam with Twin Flex shell technology of the Gamma Kium provides a nice blend of comfort and performance across a wide variety of riding conditions.

Durability


The Aliante Gamma uses a tough Microtex cover to protect against tears and abrasion and has separate Microtex glide panels along the nose of the saddle to minimize thigh friction. It also has scuff guards near the side edges at the tail of the seat, to prevent scrapes or tears in case you lean the bike against a rough surface or take an unfortunate spill. The supportive shell uses a tough yet flexible carbon layer combined with a stiffer carbon reinforcement frame, that both seem strong and sturdy. The Kium rails are a proprietary titanium alloy blend, maintaining a high degree of strength while shedding some weight. The finished product is handmade in Italy, giving it a strong perception of high-quality craftsmanship and durability.


This saddle ranks near the top of our lineup in the durability ratings, and we expect it will last you several seasons without trouble. Other saddles that rank well in this category have thinner or denser padding and are made from similarly high-end materials. We think any saddle in our lineup should last several years with proper care, but the Gamma Kium definitely stands out because of its high-end materials and quality craftsmanship.

The high-end materials and quality craftmanship should help this saddle last a long  long time.
The high-end materials and quality craftmanship should help this saddle last a long, long time.

Versatility


The Aliante Gamma Kium is quite versatile, and would be equally at home on your road bike, commuter, touring bike, or even mountain bike. Its firm yet comfortable padding, forgiving shell with a central sweet spot, and moderate size make it capable of performing across a wide variety of riding conditions. It certainly shines on the roads on those hard mid-distance rides and during the long, slow base miles, which is why it won the Top Pick for Cruising award. But it also holds its own when you need to aggressively pick up the pace to bridge a gap, or when you're digging deep to hold on during an intense climb, with its wide base and anatomic sweet spot providing a stable yet forgiving platform. These qualities also make it decent for touring or mountain biking, but most non-pros in those disciplines might opt for a little more padding.


While some other saddles in our lineup tend to specialize in a certain area and may make sacrifices in one area to optimize in another area, the Aliante Gamma Kium performs well across the board without any significant weaknesses. As longs as it's comfortable for your specific anatomy, there aren't many areas where this saddle would underperform or be out of place.

The Gamma Kium is an all-around great saddle for training and will hit most demands straight on.
The Gamma Kium is an all-around great saddle for training and will hit most demands straight on.

Weight


According to our measurements, this seat comes in at 252 grams. While it's not the lightest saddle in the lineup, that's certainly a respectable weight considering its high-end materials and top-quality construction.


Fizik maintains that their proprietary Kium rail formulation allows an 8% weight reduction compared to full titanium without sacrificing much in the way of corrosion resistance, fatigue performance, or strength. If weight is your biggest concern, there are certainly lighter saddles out there, but if this model fits your riding style and anatomy, the weight penalty is pretty minimal.

The Aliante Gamma Kium comes in at a modest 252 g.
The Aliante Gamma Kium comes in at a modest 252 g.

Value


Considering the marketplace for bike saddles, it's a pretty fair asking price for this seat. It's a tough, hand made, high-performance product, and you're paying for comfort, longevity, and the relief your tail will get from a saddle made for long, hard rides.

The Fi'zi:k Aliante Gamma K:IUM is all the saddle most riders should ever need.
The Fi'zi:k Aliante Gamma K:IUM is all the saddle most riders should ever need.

Conclusion


Hands down, the Fizik Aliante Gamma Kium provided one of the best riding experiences we had during our testing period. It was great on the flats for both sprinting and cruising, we loved it during those long, mellow training rides, and it also did really well on the long grinding climbs where you're glued to the seat for up to an hour at a time. The comfortable padding and firm yet forgiving shell materials are made for sitting back and settling into the sweet spot, which is why the Gamma Kium earns our Top Pick for Cruising award, and why you should give it a try.


Nick Bruckbauer & Ryan Baham