Topeak has been a leader in innovative bicycle accessory technology for nearly 30 years, and it shows. The Road Morph G has plenty of desirable features to make pumping easier and faster. Although it is optimized for road, it works great for mountain bike tires as well. With a T-post handle and a folding foot pedal, getting a tire to high pressure requires much less effort than with most mini pumps. Also, unlike other fold-out foot pedal models we've tested, the Road Morph G can mount on your frame. Add in the fact that it's affordable and you get everything that we're looking for to win our Editors' Choice Award.
Topeak Road Morph G Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Great pumping performance, easy to use, affordable
Cons: Heavy, Too big to fit in a jersey or a hip pack
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Road Morph G has an extendable rubber flex hose that makes it easy to hook up to your valve in any terrain or situation. The T post handle and the foot pedal make it so gravity and the ground do half of the work for you, so getting to proper pressure is no problem. Having an accurate in-line gauge attached to the pump head makes it so that even the pickiest of tire pressure nerds can ride worry free after a quick repair on the side of the road or the trail. This pump works so well, and you can leave the floor pump at home on your next trip.
The Road Morph G (shown in blue below) outperformed the other mini pumps in a big way. It was the apparent winner for our Editors' Choice Award.
Pumping Performance is amazing. Because you can set one end of the pump on the ground and lean your body weight onto the T handle, getting up to even the highest desired pressure is not that hard. Most pumps get much more difficult to pump as tire pressure increases, but we barely noticed with the Road Morph G. It is rated to 160psi, and the gauge goes up to 140psi. At only 200 pumps we got a 25C road tire up to 125psi and a 27" x 2.3" mountain bike tire up to 38psi.
The only pump that outperformed the Road Morph G on the mountain bike tire test was the Topeak Peakini 2 which reached 55psi after 300 pumps whereas the Road Morph G only reached 50. The Lezyne Gauge Drive HV, another Editors' Choice Award winner only reached 48psi after 300 pumps.
Ease of Use
The Road Morph G is incredibly easy to use. To fold the handle out, just twist and pull on it to release it from the cylinder, and it folds into a T. The pump head type is a standard locking lever, so it's very easy to attach, and the hose extends by simply pulling on it. The fold-out pedal unlocks with gentle prying, and a rubber pad on the bottom of the pump makes it so that it won't slip around on the road or on rocks in the mountains. The pump head has a swivel, and so does the hose where it connects to the pump so you can rest easy knowing that you're likely not going to damage a valve stem because you can place the pump in the perfect pumping position.
One thing it is lacking is a pressure release valve like you can find on the Lezyne Gauge Drive HV or the Lezyne Road Drive HP. If you want to release pressure, you can undo the lever and let the air out manually, but it is an added step when compared to pumps that have integrated that feature.
Looks and Design
In the looks and design category, the Road Morph G was strong. The piston is a shiny alloy, and the head has a metal cover as well. Many pumps have switched to a thread-on type head which can be a bit of a pain to use and add time if you're in a hurry. Although it has the hose on the outside of the cylinder, Topeak still did an excellent job of keeping the cylinder small in diameter to match the sleek aesthetics of most modern road bikes.
The slip on female on the Road Morph G attaches in an instant. Unlike other standard lock with lever pumps like the Topeak Peakini 2 or the Bontrager Air Support, this one is on a flexible hose, so you don't feel like you're damaging your valve stem or leaning on a spoke even while you're pumping your hardest. One thing we'd like to see is a cover for the female like the one on the Peakini 2. Also, it still uses the old school design of having to partially disassemble the head to convert from Presta to Schrader. This is always a bit unnerving because if you ever lose or break one of the parts you're going to be walking home.
Where the Road Morph G falls short is portability. It weighs 204 grams which is not the heaviest frame pump that we've reviewed, but it is much heavier than a lot of the competition. If you are the type of rider that likes to shave weight off of every tool, accessory, or component whenever possible then you should go with a lighter frame pump such as the Lezyne Road Drive that is only 97 grams. Also, at 35cm in total length, it is pretty bulky. It's not the longest pump that we've tested, but it doesn't fit in a jersey pocket or a hip pack.
If you're looking for something as small as possible we recommend purchasing the Portland Design Works Ninja, which is less than half the length of the Road Morph G. However, considering that the Road Morph G performs like a floor pump, it should be noted that it can replace your need for a floor pump if you're flying with your bike or traveling light.
Topeak has been in the game long enough to know that road cyclists and mountain bikers alike are tough on gear. This was taken into consideration when designing the Road Morph G. With a butted aluminum cylinder and a dual density polymer handle, this pump can take some abuse. We leaned on the handle and foot pedal hard on the asphalt, rocks, wood, and dirt. After nearly a thousand pump strokes, it has shown little signs of wear and tear.
One area of concern is that slip-on style heads are more prone to wear out than metal threads like the ones on the Pro Bike Tool Mini or the Portland Design Works Ninja. Also, the lever on the head is plastic. A metal lever like the one on the Bontrager Air Support will likely last longer and take more of a beating. All in all, it's a robust product.
The Road Morph G was designed and optimized for road, but because it does so well pumping mountain bike tires, we'd recommend it for both road and mountain biking. It might be considered large for a frame pump, but it does mount out of the way. It also easily fits into most moderately sized hydration packs. Also, it does perform like a floor pump, so we've even decided to keep the Road Morph G in the truck instead while shuttling or riding the bike park.
At $43 it falls right in the middle of the various price points you'll find while shopping for a frame pump. However, considering that it comes with a gauge and can truly eliminate the need for both a floor pump and a mini pump, we'd say it's well worth the dollar amount.
The Topeak Road Morph G is an excellent all-around mini pump. It works for road bike tires, it works for mountain bike tires, it performs like a floor pump, but it still mounts to your frame. If you're looking for the lightest, most compact pump this is not the one for you. If you're looking for maximum pumping power at minimal effort, or if you want a great compact pump to keep in your truck or your gear bag, the Road Morph G is the way to go, and that why it's the winner of our coveted Editors' Choice Award.
— Ross Patton