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  • The center cutout relieves perineal pressure and saves overall weight
  • Leather provides natural "give" by stretching and flexing, and because it doesn't need padding, it's a cool option in warm weather
  • The saddle will age and break in over time
  • Bag loops permit the use of a traditional English-style touring bag on the rear of the seat


View all Brooks England Bike Saddles

REI membership


Best Use Bike Commuting
Saddle Type Performance
Cutout Seat Yes
Saddle Cover Material Leather
Cushioning Material None
Rail Material Steel
Dimensions 10.7 x 6.5 inches
Weight 510 grams
Gender Men's
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Quality saddle for long time on the bike I bought this product after a charity ride because my previous saddle hurt on really long rides. Someone else had a Brooks he mentioned how little friction there was on the B-17 Imperial. I have to admit he was right! I have yet to have any trouble or pain using this saddle. You should purchase the Brooks Proofide stuff to help break it in and keep the saddle nice. I picked up a jar, that should last a long time. I also plan to purchase a Brooks cover for when it rains. The mounts for seat bag did not fit because the rails are very far apart, so make sure you have the right bag for this saddle.
Date published: 2013-08-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My bum has never been happier I've been coveting a Brooks saddle for years, and finally decided to pony up for this one during a recent REI sale. In short, everything you've heard is true. I'm cursing myself for sitting on uncomfortable bike saddles all these years. If you're going to buy one thing for your bike, make it this, you won't regret it. One note: If you're coming from a small, hard road bike saddle, this will feel pretty comfy even before it breaks in - the leather immediately starts to form to your sit bones, and the "leather stretched over rails" design means that you immediately get some nice shock and vibration absorption. It's not soft and cushy, but it is comfortable. And it will just get better from there.
Date published: 2016-06-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Superior saddle I have been training for RAGBRAI, a 500 mile tour through Iowa which is coming up in three weeks. The saddles that I have been using, gel/soft, weren't cutting it and I was having a lot of problems at 30+ miles. I researched leather seats after my sister-in-law told me that she had switched to a Brooks saddle. The choice came down to the B-17 imperial and the selle anatomica, and after reading as much as I could about each, settled on the Brooks. 3 weeks before a long ride isn't exactly the optimal time to switch an important piece of equipment like this, but I'm glad I did. Just did 50+ on the new saddle and I am more than impressed. Comfortable from the get-go albeit a little slippery, by about 10 miles the slipperiness was gone and the rest of the ride was a breeze. I'm a Clydesdale going about 210, and there was no residual discomfort following the ride. I think that being more comfortable on the seat also reduced neck strain and tightness. I am looking forward to doing another 50 tomorrow and feeling even better as it breaks in.
Date published: 2012-07-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very comfortable traditional touring saddle I live in the UK and when I bought a touring bike to add to my collection two years ago ( my wife groans at my bikes) I wanted a better saddle. Having ridden Brooks saddles 50 years ago I started looking at the different models available that are now available. Many reviewers raved about the comfort of the sprung Flyer but I did not want a big fat sit up and beg job so I elected for the Imperial and have not regretted the decision. The cut out easy pressure on your precious bits and makes breaking in much easier if your follow the instructions. I rode across the USA six years ago and on a very light custom bike but the expensive saddle at times was hard on the rear end compared to my beautiful Brooks that oozes with nostalgia as an historic icon of British craftsmanship from yester year. The Imperial is not in keeping with a carbon speed machine but the right bike it brings stylish good looks.
Date published: 2015-01-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good Choice. One week after getting this I used it in a century that I was undertrained for and I was comfortable the entire ride. The cutout is perfect. I don't think you break in a leather saddle, it breaks you in. You get used to the fact that it is a firm ride. It feels like a bike saddle, not like an easy chair and that is what makes it right. You get firm support at the sit bones, exactly where you should get the support. You do not get soft padding pressing into the soft tissues which eventually leads to compression and pain. Think of it this way. What would be more comfortable over the long haul, standing on your feet which were meant to bear weight wearing firm soled hiking boots or kneeling on your knees which were not meant to bear weight wearing soft knee pads? Actually I enjoy putting waterproofer/leather conditioner on it now and then. It feels good to take care of quality leather goods.
Date published: 2010-10-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Happy Sit Bones The Brooks Imperial B-17 was actually comfortable from the beginning. It's nowhere near broken in yet, only a couple hundred miles on my road bike so far, but it's already got all prior seats beaten in comfort. I've used the proofhide as prescribed and I purchased a Serfas waterproof seat cover to protect it from sweat & water. Love it so far. I highly recommend it!
Date published: 2016-04-05
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good saddle but didn't work for me I give 3 stars based on my personal experience which probably will shock many people. This saddle is a good choice for many riders, especially long distance riders. I got one for my daily rider/commuter, but ended up returning it. I can tell it takes some time to break in. The leather is pretty stiff at the beginning, but likely will soften up like a pair of shoes or baseball glove. I also have issues with the rails. None of my saddle bags fit under the saddle because they were differently spaced. Lastly, I always got very nervous leaving my bike parked anywhere because I thought the seat would get stolen. I know I could lock it, but I didn't want to have to worry about it. Being a commuter bike, it was always parked in public areas, and I didn't feel comfortable leaving it out. The higher quality calls for a higher price. I ended up getting a less expensive saddle and didn't worry about it anymore. With all that said, I would still recommend it since most of my issues aren't too much against the quality of it. I hope to try one again someday on a road bike that I don’t have to leave parked outside.
Date published: 2016-05-27
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Has anyone tried the cutout versus the non-cutout and noticed a difference? I'd go for it if it makes a difference but I'm skeptical any difference is noticeable...

Asked by: dontheWolfKonecny
The biggest difference that you will notice with the perineum cutout is a reduction in pressure and increased ventilation on hot days.
Answered by: REIservice
Date published: 2016-11-18

Is it possible to order this in the women's version?

Asked by: Anonymous5678
The women's version is currently not available.
Answered by: REIservice
Date published: 2017-01-26

Do you only carry the Brooks Imperial in Black?

Asked by: Zorba
We currently only carry the Brooks England Imperial B-17 Saddle in Black.
Answered by: REIservice
Date published: 2015-09-20
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