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For sale here on eBay are some Diadora Power Drive pedals, which tried to take on the might of Look clipless pedals in the early 1990s, but, well, couldn't…
The introduction of Look's clipless pedals - which is still one of the best road bike pedals around - to the peloton in the mid-1980s, with the charge led by five-time Tour de France winner Bernard Hinault, spelled the end of toe-clips and straps – hence the term 'clipless' – although the likes of Irish Classics specialist Sean Kelly held on to the old ways into the 1990s, only eventually succumbing to the new-fangled pedals in the final years of his career.
The design by French company Look was based on the way a ski binding worked, allowing solid foot retention when required, but with an easy, twist-out motion of the foot to disengage, although everyone – and it is almost everyone – will remember using clipless pedals for the first time, which normally involves the process of a red traffic light, stopping, panicking and falling slowly sideways.
We're putting these pedals' manufacturing date around the early 1990s, and the £160 price tag still visible on the box made them – and would still make them – a premium product.
The pedals seem to be made from a chunk of aluminium, as do the cleats, which certainly wouldn't make them anywhere close to as light as today's plastic and carbon pedals. The proprietary cleats appear to come in both a 'static' and 'dynamic' option when it comes to foot retention, which presumably refers to the amount of 'float' allowed for your foot.
We recently featured these Eddy Merckx-branded Podio pedals (and shoes) from around the same era; many tried, but almost as many failed, to jump in on the clipless-pedal revolution, and other pedal manufacturers that came later and survived include Shimano and Speedplay.
The fact that the seller – who's asking for US$79 (£60) for these 'new old stock' (NOS) pedals – is based in Italy adds an element of extra authenticity to this Italian product; Diadora remains best known as a continuing manufacturer of sports clothing and training shoes. Will they ever try pedals again, though?
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