Mavic XM719 Rims: Probably Not Suitable For Loaded Touring

When choosing a rim for the next wheel on your touring bike, you may want to avoid Mavic’s XM719 model.

We’ve recommended this rim in the past (based on our own experience and the recommendations of others) but it seems something has changed. In the past month, several bike tourists have contacted us to report broken XM719 rims.

Bert and Gillian were the first to get in touch. They’ve broken five of these rims in just 9,000km of cycling around North America. In an email, they wrote:

It started happening after only 1,000km on the back wheel of the bike with the heaviest load. By the time we completed 3,000km a further two back-wheel rims broke on the same bike. At that stage we replaced the back rim on the heavier bike with a SunRingle Rhyno Lite rim, which solved the problem. During the last week, the same issue developed on the front wheel on the bike with the heaviest load (after 9,000km) as well as the back wheel of the bike with the lesser load (after 6,000km).

Bert & Gillian’s touring bikes.

Francesco Alaimo also told us that a crack developed in his XM719 rim after just 1,000km. He was able to ride the bike a further 3,000km before the rim gave out entirely.

In Bishkek I met a guy who had to substitute his XM719 for exactly the same problem after less than 5,000km and a couple on a tandem had exactly the same problem previously.

Cracked XM719 rimFrancesco’s cracked XM719 rim.

When we asked for opinions about rims on Facebook, Charles Coderre also reported failures of the XM719 rim (although his rims did last quite a bit longer than for the other cyclists we heard from).

We are riding fully loaded (bike and gear = 80 to 100 pounds). The Mavic XM719 we had on our rear wheels did not last. After 8,000 kilometers, my rim cracked on the entire circumference and was starting to open. I changed for Sun Rhyno Lite. After 13,000 kilometers my wife’s rear MavicXM719 rim was also starting to crack and open.

To double-check these reports, we asked two bike experts for their opinion. Both Marten Gerritsen and the wheel builders at Bike4Travel recommend Ryde Sputnik rims as a durable choice, and both had concerns about the suitability of Mavic rims for loaded touring.

We put these concerns to Mavic and they said the XM719 was a reliable rim with a return rate of less than 0.5%.

We’ve been selling those kind of rims to globe trotters for decades now (so thousands of them) and with very few issues. That said, this type of use (heavy load on the bike and rider) makes the rim more prone to this kind of fatigue. We have no influence on the wheel assembly and very often those kinds of cracks happen if the spoke tension is too high.

Mavic will replace a rim under warranty (if it’s found to be defective) but that’s of little use to most bike tourists. When your rim breaks during a tour, you just need to get it repaired and keep moving. The last thing you want is to be stuck in one place for days (or possibly weeks) negotiating a replacement with a company — especially when that company makes contact so difficult!

On the Mavic website, there are no obvious contact details (only lists of shops selling their products). It took us several days to get any reply via their social media channels. Compare that to our experience, when a Bontrager rim failed on us after just 3,000km of loaded touring. We were able to contact them easily and had a no-questions-asked refund within days (our previous rims from Alex and Alessa lasted for nearly 30,000km before we opted to replace them).

Given all of this, we can’t recommend the XM719 rim for touring anymore. It’s true that any one of these failures could have been caused by something other than the rim (eg. over-inflation of the tire or a poorly-built wheel) but when we hear so many reports about a single rim, it naturally makes us cautious. To be on the safe side, go for an option such as the Ryde Sputnik. Hopefully that will save you the trouble caused by a rim failure on the road!

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  1. Brian
    8th December 2013 at 4:01 pm #

    I heartily recommend Sun Rhyno Lite rims hand laced to Shimano XT hubs. The rims are about half the price of the Mavics and are pretty bomb proof. The Shimano hubs are a no brainer considering the price, quality and ease of service. My wife and I rode 10,000 kms this year from North Africa thru Europe to Central Asia on these wheels and we only had to do some minor truing. These are fantastic wheels; they’re heavy and definitely NOT sexy, but I don’t have to think about them.

  2. isaac m
    8th December 2013 at 4:55 pm #

    I had the same issue after 3000 km on my back wheel , same rims Mavic xm 719 Im not longer recomend them for touring

  3. Frank
    8th December 2013 at 7:58 pm #

    I have Alex Rims on the Surly and have 20,000 ks plus and still going strong.

  4. Nomadic Justin
    17th December 2013 at 5:30 am #

    I quite literally just finished (two days ago) working with my LBS to build a new touring rig. They originally recommended Sun Rhyno Lite’s as well although I decided to go with Velocity Cliffhanger’s.

    I’ll be riding the TransAmerica in a couple months on these… let’s hope I chose well!

  5. Steven Scheib
    23rd December 2013 at 12:49 am #

    Several touring folks have experienced Cliffhanger failures just like the Mavic 719. Called Velocity several times and they recommend their Psycho rim for bullet proof endurance! One problem is the rim is not made anymore due to lack of sales. Only Peter White has inventory! I have a set and was told I could pass these rims on to someone in my will as they will last the lifetime of any 3 bike frames? We will see!

  6. Tyler
    29th December 2013 at 9:24 pm #

    Add another XM719 failure to the list:[email protected]/4302537445

  7. Sascha
    27th January 2014 at 5:50 am #

    No problems with them and know lots of others who find them more than up to the task…?

  8. Trevor
    27th January 2014 at 10:31 am #

    FWIW, my experience is that the Exal rims ( are great value for money and very reliable. I haven’t broken one yet despite a lot of trying. If you are based in Europe, give them a try.

  9. Shaun
    7th February 2014 at 5:26 pm #

    It’s a real pity Mavic don’t make the X618 anymore. Those are double-eyeletted and pretty bombproof without being too heavy and were my goto rim for mountain biking.

    When I was looking for a new set of X618-ish rims I ended up with some Rose own-brand rims which are double eyeletted, reassuringly heavy at 610g and with the added bonus of being both inexpensive and having reflective strips on the rim. I presume they’re rebranded Alex or some other Taiwanese brand.

    At the time I was also looking for a hub dynamo and Rose had a special offer on for a built set of those rims, XT rear hub, XT 3N80 dynohub, DT spokes, tubes and tyres. I paid about £150 all in figuring the rims were pretty much free after paying for the hubs.

    I’ve had three or maybe four weeks in total fully loaded front and rear and the bike is my commuter with Conti Town & Country tyres which I was pleasantly surprised by both on road and off. I occasionally take the off-piste route. I’ve also had them on my xtracyle, loaded.

    They’ve upped the price a bit but still a bargain IMHO.—sari-m-19r/aid:483388

    I’m honestly not connected with Rose in any way, just happy with my purchase. If I was to mark them down at all, it’s that the reflective strip peels off eventually if you wash your bike with cleaner. I’m using Magura rim brakes and round here it’s gritty sandstone so rims get a battering offroad. These are lasting well after over a year of on and off use and mini-tours.

    Now someone’s going to tell me they had them and they cracked….

  10. Peter
    11th February 2014 at 6:59 am #

    Also had the same issue at the start of a tour up the east coast of Australia in 2012 (inside split in XM719 rear rim). Replaced with EX721 Mavic rim and just doing some maintenance this morning and this rim has also failed (outside split).

  11. Dan
    2nd March 2014 at 6:41 pm #

    Is it possible to split the failure rate data based on whether or not the xm719 rim was hand-built into a wheelset or machine-built?

  12. Julien Roy
    6th March 2014 at 7:19 pm #

    1 more to the list!
    I still haven’t returned it yet officially because my client is still travelling, but the failure is similar to what the picture shows.

  13. Bert & Gill
    9th March 2014 at 3:11 am #

    We were the ones who raised the issue initially with Andrew and Friedel. We have covered 5,000km since we replaced our Mavic XM719s with Sun Rhino Lite rims and they are performing fantastically (on worse roads).

  14. Michal Plech
    16th April 2014 at 5:07 pm #

    I rode few tours on two different Mavic rims. open pro on the read fo about 6000km and XM719 bike packing in Scotland and Iceland. I am not a small guy anymore (105kg) plus all the camping gear adds up. and i had no problems with any of them. XM719 is really proper MTB rim light and raged. If you want something even stronger get XM319. extra extrusion walls inside make it stronger. And from wheel building experiance… too much tension on the spokes. Or not equal tension on all the spokes. pulling eyelets it’s not easy to do. before you go on any tour find the best wheel builder you can and ask for the right set for what you do

  15. Ian
    17th April 2014 at 12:52 pm #

    A really interesting thread here…….. Quite surprising as Mavic usually make quality products…….. Especially their rims.

    I am wondering if it is a poor quality batch of rims that have made it onto the market ?

    Other things to consider ?

    Wheels builder used or ? LBS using the old “pull the spokes by hand to test spoke tension” trick ? That can lead to really uneven spoke tension………… Leading to results that we are seeing here in this thread sadly 🙁

    I ? Am a heavy rider ( 260lbs ) and use a wheel builder that uses a spoke tensioner tool when he builds my wheels from scratch ( being a heavy rider, I ALWAYS have my wheels built by hand and from scratch, as factiry wheels are truly awful ! ) ……The proof is in the pudding….. My 36 Hole Velocity Deep V Rims, spinning on trusty Shimano 105 hubs…….. have just had a minor true on the rear wheel……… After some 10,000 kilometres. These wheels sit on my hack bike and are used and abused to be honest.

    Something else that is actually really relevant to rim health, is tyre pressures…… Personally, I ignore the maximum pressures quoted by bicycle tyre companies and go for somewhere in the middle of highest and lowest.

    Who knows as far as hubs are concerned but I have never and will never go anywhere near Shimano Deore hubs etc etc on a loaded tourer.

    I run a Thorn Nomad Mkll for touring now……….. Rohloff on the back and an admittedly over the top 48 hole Phil Wood touring hub on the front, spokes laced to a pair of Rigida CSS Andra Rims……… The Rohloff built wheel is super strong due to the “lack of dish” …….. Phil Wood….. Well, their products are top quality with few crappy reviews. I ran a 40 front, 48 rear touring hub set up on my now sold Vivente World Randonneur……….. Not a single issue in 6000 kilometres of seriously loaded touring in Australia !

    • Bert & Gill
      23rd April 2014 at 12:00 am #

      Based on our experience we can rule out the wheel builder/bad batch theories because we had the same issue happening to rims purchased in 3 different locations and built by 3 different wheel builders.
      Also, after the first failure we purchased a tyre gauge and carefully monitored our tyre pressure. This didn’t prevent further failures.
      Unfortunately only after we broke 5 rims did we meet a wheel builder who knew of problems with Mavic rims. He had a lot of experience building touring bikes and called them garbage.

      • Ian
        23rd April 2014 at 12:14 am #

        Well, looks like Mavis have out sourced the rim making side of their production…….. With catastrophic results for both Cycle Tourers AND their share of the wheel market.

  16. Phil
    26th April 2014 at 12:34 pm #

    @Ian: Mavic outsourcing their rim production – is that a fact or just a guess?

    I’m currently thinking about getting Mavic 819 rims for a Rohloff back wheel with loaded touring in sight (NZ South Island with kid and trailer). I wonder if Mavic’s FORE technology might make these rims stronger and more durable.

  17. Sascha
    8th June 2014 at 7:22 am #

    I don’t see any mention of whether it’s rims failing more with rim brakes or discs? Are they failing with both brake systems? Seems to me mainly rims using traditional brakes which is odd as the splits are down the middle like they are built with too much tension?

  18. andrei
    9th July 2014 at 9:21 pm #

    How much it was inflate your tire and if you use disc brake system with rim brake rim is normal to broke because is not made for that

  19. Alberto Contreras
    17th July 2014 at 1:58 pm #

    Another bad user experience here. In our case though, the rim was extremely worn out after about 5000 km of touring, loaded, and in the Andes. Sure enough, tough condition for it, but on our other bike we had an Rigida (Ryde) Sputnik also in the back. This rim shows no sign of wear, after the same conditions and km and with a heavier load.

    Also experienced the same problem when trying to contact Mavic directly, so contacted the supplier Rose Bikes. Their response was pretty poor also: a rim is an expendable part, 5000 km can be enough to wear it out, and was out of warranty. Unfortunately we counld only get yet another Mavic rim (X221) in Northern Perú, although we now know it is know a “touring” rim and what to expect..also we did not pay a fraction of what the 719s cost.

  20. menNOMADS
    18th August 2014 at 2:00 am #

    Last week I experienced a similar problem. Not sure what type of rim, but it’s Mavic Crossmax SLR. Rims are factory spoked and equiped with disc brakes. I have used them many years for mountain biking w/o any problem. Then after 3 days of touring with a BOB Yak trailer, the rim completely cracked.

    No more Mavic for me, especially after reading this blog. The rims might be perfect for MTB, but they are not suited for heavy load touring.

  21. Chris
    10th December 2014 at 7:38 pm #

    I am touring South America. Had to buy two Mavic rims for my bike . There are alternatives here as I have 700C wheels. When I intially researched this I found Mavic rims got rave reviews, but I just contacted a mate with a bike shop England and he says they are terrible. He won’t stock them. Now I read this! Worried I am not going make it all the way to Argentina. 🙁

    • Bert & Gill
      21st December 2014 at 8:41 am #


      We were the ones who raised the issue initially with Andrew and Friedel. I wouldn’t worry too much if I were you. We experienced the problems using heavy loads on the 26 inch 36 spokes version of the wheel. My theory is that the distance between the spokeholes on the 26 inch 36 spokes model is too small too support the weight. All our rims started cracking between the valve and the spokes next to it. Since you are using 700C wheels, the distance between the spokeholes will be greater…and the wheel stronger

      Enjoy the riding

  22. Nation
    25th December 2014 at 9:51 am #

    Mavic have had issues with rims cracking in the past in the late 90’s early 00’s I believe.

  23. Andrew G
    8th January 2015 at 8:57 pm #

    Add yet another failure for the Mavic XM719 rims. I had them built around Phil Wood Hubs by Paul White. Rim cracked the entire circumference and the side wall blew out. Essentially ended my 5 months trip through South America. Overall, about 6000km on them. Paul White was no help (tried to blame me for riding them at too low of a PSI though the rim states the minimum for a 2.5 inch tire and I was well above the minimum). Mavic was no help either. Terrible customer service. Good luck even trying to get ahold of them! Never will I buy another Mavic rim. Cheers!

  24. ul71m85p1n
    2nd February 2015 at 3:49 am #

    If I might try to shed some light on the XM719 rim and it’s suitability for touring, perhaps the x-section of this rim could illustrate that, unlike cheaper Mavic rims (like XM119) that are heavier and don’t have the advantage of Maxtal aluminium or the SUP welding process, the XM719 does not have the circular structure between the wall of the rim and the wall-bracing cross member. Cheaper, heavier rims that are less sensitive to tight spokes and high tire pressures under heavy load could potentially be far better suited to touring in the long run, especially using poly-ax spoke nipples. Also, factors like long descents using disc brakes can lead to tire pressure increase, due to the heating effect of prolonged braking on the wheel hubs, which will eventually raise the temperature of the rim (sooner rather than later the more spokes you have). The XM719 may well be a response from Mavic to the demand for a strong, light rim that can take large tires from lighter riders that do not clock up much mileage on the road. Still, they look like you could fit rim brakes in addition to disc brakes, and still get a reasonable braking response.

  25. Simon
    1st May 2015 at 11:35 am #

    I think some more investigation is required here. At the very least, are thosewho are reporting malfunctions using rim or disc brakes? Hand-made or bought off the shelf? I have over 20,000km on 719 rims, 14,000 of which was and currently still is, fully loaded touring on sealed roads and unsealed tracks. I use disc rims and the wheelset was made by a pro builder. I don’t wish to tempt fate as I am still travelling but I have had absolutely no issues regarding the durability of these rims under load and on rough ground.

    • Peter
      5th May 2015 at 4:57 am #

      Hi Simon, not sure anyone is thinking it is 100% failure rate, but certainly the rate appears to be high enough to shed considerable doubt as to the rims being a robust option for touring. As with most cases that I’m aware of, my rims were hand built by a well experienced professional touring bike specialist that has considerable familiarity with the rims (and no longer recommends them due to the failure rate they have experienced). My first rim failed very early (1500km) and the second later (5000km). My setup is 2010 LHT with rim brakes & I’m now using Rigida Andra rims.

  26. Peder
    17th August 2015 at 4:52 pm #

    I’ve had the Mavic A319 rims for over 40,000 kilometres. Still going strong. The Shimano hub (XT and later deore) has broken twice, however. 🙂

  27. coco
    22nd February 2016 at 5:03 pm #

    I have problem with my LX Mavic XM719. less than a year with 7’000 km
    rear rim is “inflate” in just one part, consequently, when i brake …
    I am just lucky this did not happen during a long trip …
    What the fuss playing with the warranty, too risky

    will not buy anymore mavic

  28. Andrew
    11th April 2016 at 2:52 pm #

    These arguments are silly, the Rigida is 300g more than an A719 which is a huge amount relative to the weight of the rim and that naturally will offer, “weight” for it, … a stronger rim!

    To ride a 319/719 on a tandum isn’t a fault of the rim but of poor user choice.

    The 319/719 having less alloy will be more prone to overtight spoke issues.

    I’ve toured with A319’s on some of the worst riding surfaces imaginable and they’ve held up.

    • Peter
      20th April 2016 at 10:46 pm #

      Not quite sure why the discussion turned to A719 rims, it is XM719 rims that have failed for myself and others?????

  29. phil weatherley
    25th April 2016 at 2:58 pm #

    This rather alarming conversation from people who broke their Mavic XM719 rims omitted one significant detail – namely; the weight of the entire load INCLUDING the rider. With the average American (and increasingly the UK) rider becoming significantly overweight we may be simply looking at gross overload rather than a shortcoming in the rim.
    My own experience has this 719 Disc rim on a Rohloff hub on a Marin Pt Reyes 2010 with Tioga FS100 2.1″ tyres. The high-volume tyres give a very smooth ride. The rim is as pristine as new after 5 years of my mixed-condition riding. Rough-terrain, big stones, cobbles, bumping up kerbs and other foolish, stressing behaviours seem to not have any effect. The Mavic 317 on the front not showing any signs of stress either. However after this blast from the crypt I shall be examining the rims more frequently just in case.

  30. S.S.Agius
    29th October 2016 at 1:36 am #

    Here it says that the XM719 can only support up to 115kg (excluding the bike).

  31. stefan l.
    10th November 2016 at 1:44 pm #

    Hello there everybody,

    I am in the process of building a wheelset for my gravel bike and have looked at the Mavic XM719 Disc as well.

    At one webiste I did find the information that the XM719 has a maximum load capacity of 115kg. Mavic states here rider + load excluding the bike itself. Typically Mavic.
    DT Swiss states always a max weight for rider+luggage+bike. Makes more sense.

    Anyway, I guess every touring bike packed with rider will be way over the recommended total load.

    So, yes the XM719 is not a touring bike rim.

  32. Mike
    15th June 2017 at 4:09 pm #

    Purley anecdodal but I’ve been beating the crap out of mine for 5 year loaded on very very rough roads. As with all wheels the key is skill of the builder.

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