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K2 Kwicker preview (2013)

posted Jan 31, 2013, 3:23 AM by Italo Balestra   [ updated Feb 7, 2013, 1:28 PM by GoOut Project ]



How does the new Kwicker splitboard system work and how does the board ride? We just tested it on the slopes and here we report our first impressions.

We tried the Kwicker, the new splitboard system by K2 Snowboard, that will be available on the market starting from winter 2013. With the Kwicker, K2 offers a complete package that includes board, bindings, boots, crampons, and skins. The Kwicker uses the K2 Clicker step-in system, which is supposed to greatly simplify the operations of transitions and to significantly reduce weight.

First Impressions on the Snow

How does the splitboard system work?
  • In the transitions from ride mode to touring mode and vice versa, the system is much easier than any other system available on the market.
  • The average transition time is less than a minute (see the videos below)!!
  • The mechanism is essential and intuitive.
  • All the components are solid. There are no small parts that can be lost or subject to breakage.
  • The light weight is very impressive. The board with all the components mounted weighs much less than the standard version from which it derives (the UltraDream) with a pair of K2 Formula bindings mounted.
  • Attaching the boot to the board is not always immediate, especially in deep snow and on irregular or steep terrains.
  • All operations can be easily done also wearing gloves (as a challenge we did it also with mittens!)

How does the board ride?

  • The cornering grip is stunning considering the extent of the effective edge, the global shape of the board, and most importantly that it is a Splitboard. 
  • The board is steady on the corners even at high speeds and the long nose and tail do not vibrate, as one would have instead expected.
  • The decoupled twist and flex of the two halves of the board is hardly noticeable, even when pushing to the limit.
  • The grip is always good, also on steep and icy slopes. The agility in tight spaces is excellent.
  • On powder the behavior is identical to that of the UltraDream.


How are the boots?
  • As one might imagine, the boots have a particularly hard flex, both forward and backward flex. In sideways movements (parallel to the board), however, they allow some degree of movement, which is pleasant given the overall stiffness of the system. In any case, this lateral freedom does not compromise the transmission of impulses to the board.
  • The comfort is generally good and the inner shoe perfectly copies the shape of the foot, but the very hard flex may cause some problems to those who are not used to ride with very stiff boots.
  • Inside the tips of the boots there is plenty of room for the fingers to move, which allows some freedom of movement in "touring mode".
  • The lacing system uses the BOA, one for the inner shoe and one for the outer hull.

At least for the moment, K2 seems to give a strong shock to the world of Splitboards.
The ISPO winter 2013 is coming soon. 
We'll soon know who is going to challenge the KWICKER next winter ...


STAY TUNED!


Transition Ride Mode - Touring Mode


Transition Touring Mode - Ride Mode


Kwicker Official Presentation Video

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