Products: WTB Silverado and Volt Saddles
Silverado Pro White
Usage: Elite Road / Cross Country Racing
Size: Narrow x Long (135mm x 280mm)
Details: flex-tuned shell, comfort zone, abr corners, dna padding
MSRP: Carbon $250 / SLT $150 / Team $130 / Pro $90
Usage: Road / Cross Country Racing
Size: Narrow x Mid-length (133mm x 265mm)
Details: kevlar corners, comfort zone, dna padding, synthetic cover
MSRP: SLT $150 / Team $130 / Pro $90 / Race $60
Saddles are a pretty personal thing, so I’ll go ahead and say upfront that what fits my taint won’t necessarily fit yours. There are, however, a few universal traits that most will agree are essential to a given design, so there’s certainly merit in covering those.
WTB has been in the saddle game for as long as I’ve been riding mountain bikes, and they have a pretty good (and deserved) reputation for making something in a saddle that will work for you. I don’t even want to attempt to count all the WTB saddles I’ve bought for myself in the past, but they’ve been propping up butts on singletrack for years and years.
I’ve had a Silverado on my DH bike for the last year, and it’s been absolutely fine in that role. It’s been comfy to sit on in short spurts, not too intrusive, and looks pretty damn slick. With all the bike tossing into the backs of trucks, the crashes, and the odd places it’s been set down while out in the woods, the Silverado is barely showing a scratch. The biggest wear it shows is along the top of the saddle where a brake lever rubbed up against it on a long shuttle ride. It’s lost its coloring on the stitching, but it’s in great shape.
I was curious to try another Silverado to throw on my trail bike and see how one of these things felt on multi-hour climbs. I was already sold on its durability, weight, and appearance, but what it would do to the man bits on really long rides is a different story.
Along with the Silverado, I also agreed to review a saddle that I hadn’t heard of previously, the Volt. Billed by WTB as an “Elite MTB and Road saddle,” it’s a noticeably different shape than the Silverado. There’s nothing elite about the way I climb a trail bike, but if it keeps my junk from going numb, it’s a winner.
About the most useful info I can share is that the Volt has a narrower profile than the Silverado. The thin portion of the nose extends farther back than the Silverado, giving my individual set of sit bones a more rounded profile to rest on. Put simply, the Silverado is flatter overall, and flatter for a longer distance toward the nose, while the Volt is much more contoured.
One thing the Volt has that I appreciate is a reflective back panel. I grew up in the humid southeast, and my entire introduction to trail riding was more in the dark than the daylight. Even if you’re looking for a MTB saddle, having some reflective surfaces is good. Getting lost on trails and pedaling back on some pavement or dirt roads is bound to happen every now and then; it’s not just for road bikes. The Silverado has a rear end that remains somewhat flat and has no surface for something like this.