Hands-on Gear Review

DMR V-Twin Review

Large, heavy and adjustable, this pedal will find its audience, but its price to performance ratio isn't in line with its competitors.
By: Joshua Hutchens ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Aug 29, 2018
Price:  $140 List  |  $137.97 at Amazon
Pros:  Adjustable, excellent performance, available in an array of colors
Cons:  Hefty, expensive, pins don't provide much traction
Manufacturer:   DMR Bikes
71
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#6 of 14
  • Ease of Exit - 25% 9
  • Ease of Entry - 20% 9
  • Adjustability - 20% 9
  • Weight - 15% 1
  • Platform - 10% 6
  • Mud Shedding Ability - 10% 5
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Our Verdict

A solid pedal offering a broad array of grip and traction adjustments, the DMR V-Twin is large and feature packed. The SPD licensed mechanism performed exceptionally well, and the pedal felt very consistent. Weighing in at 610 grams, these pedals will likely find their market on gravity-oriented bikes. Offering a more customizable interface than any other pedal in the test, the DMR lets you build the pedal just the way you want it. Pair these pedals with the Specialized 2FO Cliplite and attack the downhills with confidence. Still, we'd rather have the Shimano Saint M820 pedal for a few dollars less.


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Our Analysis and Test Results

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The DMR V-Twin brings a unique form of adjustability, promising more variations for grip and feel. Unboxing this pedal is interesting. There are more parts than we're used to seeing. Included with the pedals are, of course, cleats and pins. But they also come with steel shims that raise and lower the nylon pin platforms. The pin platforms feel a bit cheap and slippery, but the pedals' machining and anodizing look top notch. The pedals feel large and a little bulky, even before adding pins and shims.

The 4140 Chromoly steel axle sports a 6mm recess, there is no 15mm wrench flat. Similar to the Xpedo GFX, they use a spring-loaded cage to hold the engagement mechanism in an optimal position, ready to go.

Performance Comparison


The V-Twin is an excellent choice for the ride down
The V-Twin is an excellent choice for the ride down

Ease of Entry


With or without pins installed, the V-Twin allows rapid ease of entry. The cleat mechanism is open and highly polished, and the body does nothing to obstruct entry. It scores very well against its competitors as a result.


Although based on an SPD design, the engagement doesn't have the lock and load feeling of an authentic Shimano SPD pedal. The traction pins, which can impede entry, are not an issue on this pedal. The DMR pins are slightly larger in diameter and less sharp than others we've tested.

Crank Brothers Double Shot 2  HT D1  Shimano Saint M820 and the V-Twin
Crank Brothers Double Shot 2, HT D1, Shimano Saint M820 and the V-Twin

Ease of Exit


The upside of less aggressive pins is that these pedals are incredibly easy to exit. They scored well in this metric as a result.


Unclipping is quick, smooth and consistent, requiring less effort than the Saint M820.

Adjustability


DMR set out to make the V-Twin customizable in its engagement, grip, and traction. The engagement mechanism is based on SPD and offers 15 clicks from low to high tension. It works well.


The ends of the platform have nylon bumpers that you can raise using the included steel shims. Seven bolts hold the bumpers in on each side. You can also swap each bolt for traction pins.

Weight


At 558 grams, they're the heaviest clipless pedal we've ever tested.


There's plenty to love about the V-Twin but the weight isn't one of those things. If you bolt on the steel shims that raise the nylon pin platforms,you're at a whopping 610 grams!

Whoa! 568 grams is before we bolt on 8 steel shims to raise the nylon bumpers
Whoa! 568 grams is before we bolt on 8 steel shims to raise the nylon bumpers

Platform


The larger DMR pins provide a bit less bite than the narrower ones used by HT and Shimano.


Regardless of shoe choice, we never felt like the pins engaged as well as they deflected, pushing back on the sole rather than cutting in.

The DMR pedals feel large but also a bit tall  especially with shims installed.
The DMR pedals feel large but also a bit tall, especially with shims installed.

Mud Shedding


We preferred the DMR over the Saint M820 on dry days. Putting the pedals in the mud changed our opinions a bit.


The DMR held on to the muck that prevented us from getting in a couple of times. More surface area on this pedal meant more places for mud to catch a ride.

The DMR enduring a mud trial
The DMR enduring a mud trial

Best Applications


If you're finicky about the feel of your pedals and want the ability to fine-tune your fit, these could be your ticket. They'd be right at home on a downhill or enduro bike but maybe a bit much for smaller bikes when weight is a consideration.

Value


They're big and bulky and highly adjustable, a combination that will work very well for some, but they cost too much to spend much time rationalizing their cons. The Shimano Saint M820 is a far better value.

Conclusion


Big, bad and bold, the DMR provides excellent performance and industry-leading adjustability. We found the pedal to be stable, capable, and confidence inspiring. If weight isn't a concern of yours, you'll appreciate these pedals more.

Joshua Hutchens

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