This week we have a monstrous e-mountain bike, and a World Cup-winning XC race bike with a dropper post that drops on its own, some very fast new road wheels & more! Here’s what’s on the menu:
- BMC’s auto-dropping Fourstroke
- Ibis Oso eMTB goes big
- Ridley & Cervelo launch MTBs, too
- Pinarello 3D prints an alloy bike
- Parcours Chrono road wheels
- Wahoo ROAM gets an upgrade
- Pirelli Race-level EN/DH tires
- WTB HTZ eMTB wheels
- Hunt Proven MTB wheels
BMC Fourstroke’s self-dropping seatpost, fast suspension
The 2023 BMC Fourstroke family of XC bikes gets a complete revamp, with a bit slacker 66.5º headtube and much lower BB height to give it an aggressively low center of gravity and really good descending skills.
Updated suspension kinematics give it rock crawler-like climbing prowess, too. Combined with a lighter, 20% stiffer frame, it turns all of your power into ground-hugging forward motion.
But what really sets the top Fourstroke 01 models apart is the new fully integrated Autodrop seatpost. Pressurize the full-carbon tank co-molded into the downtube and it’ll drop the seatpost for you using air power to compress the spring, saving precious energy since you don’t have to squat to lower the post.
It’s extremely clever (and effective, I rode it at the launch), and is good for up to 100 drops per fillup. And when the tank’s empty it works just like a normal dropper post. Titouan Carod raced it to an XCO win at Val di Sol this year. I made a video of it working.
Ibis Oso eMTB can change travel from big to ridiculous
The Ibis Oso e-mountain bike starts out enduro, but can go full DH. It starts with 155mm of efficient DW-Link rear travel, but a unique side-mounted rear shock allows you to bump it to 170mm simply by putting in a longer stroke shock. Stock forks are 170mm, but bump that to 180-190mm (dual crown if you want) to go really big.
Size-specific seat angles and wheel sizes (S/M get mixed wheels, L/XL get 29er F&R) cover all rider sizes. It’s powered by a Bosch Performance CX motor with a massive 750Wh battery on M/L/XL (Smalls only fit a 650Wh battery). Cleanly integrated Lupine lights let you ride into the night. One build only for $10,999.
New Cervelo ZHT-5 is a hardtail mountain bike for roadies
When some pro road racers want to race MTB, they’ll choose whatever mountain bike they want and simply cover up the logos. Cervelo, however, is giving Team Jumbo-Visma their own hardtail to challenge the 2023 XCO World Cup series.
A steep 69º head angle should feel familiar for roadies, as will a 907g frame (size M) and a middle-of-the-road 457mm Reach (size L) and short-ish 430mm Chainstays. Two builds available, GX Eagle AXS ($4,800) and XX1 AXS ($9,000).
Ridley Probe hardtail & Raft full-sus mountain bikes
Ridley’s Probe hardtail is just 760g (claimed, unpainted size M), is aimed a racers but is dropper compatible, an dhas a slightly slacker 68.5º head angle but shorter reach than the Cervelo. It’s compatible w/ 100mm & 120mm forks, though. Video here, available January 2023.
The Ridley Raft full-suspension MTB comes in XC (100mm fork, 67.5º HA) or Trail (120mm fork, 66.5º HA) specs. The frames are the same, relying on different shock strokes to achieve 100mm or 120mm of travel. Bonus points for having five bottle bolts on the downtube (M-XL frames) plus mounts on the seat tube and top tube. Video here, available Spring 2023.
Pinarello Bolide F HR is a 3D-printed Hour Record bike
Designed and printed for Filippo Ganna, this 3D-printed Pinarello Bolide F HR time trial bike took advantage of a new lightweight Scandium-Aluminum-Magnesium alloy called Scalmalloy (seriously) that’s made specifically for 3D printing.
This allowed them to create tubercles (I’m not making this up – they’re inspired by whale fins) on the front edges of the seat tube and seatpost to cut drag. The hubs and bottom bracket shell are 20-30% narrower than normal, reducing the frontal profile. Custom Princeton Carbonworks wheels fill that space.
Parcours Chrono road wheels go deep & wide for aero gains
Ultra-narrow may work for track bikes, but IRL aero gains are increasingly made with wider rims. Parcours’ new Chrono series take the excellent (and extremely lightweight) wide rim shapes of their Ronde wheels and give them 68mm, 75mm & 83mm depths.
They’re optimized for 28mm wide tires, with a 22.5mm internal width and hooked, tubeless-ready rim. The new, wider profile is 17% more stable in crosswinds than the prior design, giving you low drag and predictable handling. The 68/75 (F/R) combo weighs 1620g (745g F/ 875g R), MSRP is £1,199 (EZO steel bearings) or £1,4479 (Kogel ceramic bearings), lifetime warranty.
New Wahoo ELEMNT ROAM adds more memory, better GPS
The new Wahoo ROAM v2 upgrades to 32GB of memory, letting it store more maps and routes on board. A new dual-band GPS receiver helps it track you on those routes better, and a higher-contrast 64-color screen makes it all easier to see.
A new Summit Segments feature color codes by grade the climbs on pre-loaded routes. The 17-hour battery life remains, MSRP is $399.
Pirelli Scorpion Race tires bring big R&D to enduro, downhill
Internally, Pirelli loves to win top-level races. So their bike division said they could win World Cup EWS and DH races if they had extra resources. They got them, and the result are new Scorpion “Race” EN & DH tires.
A softer outer compound grips like crazy and is supported by a firmer base compound and two-ply casings (120tpi for EN, 60tpi for DH). The rubber isn’t as durable, but it’s optimized for all-out grip and performance on race day. MSRP is ~$95 each, available in late 2023. Four tread patterns cover all-around, soft surfaces, hardpack, and mud. I’ve ridden the EN-M version and it’s amazing.
WTB HTZ eMTB wheels are nearly indesctructible
If you want an overbuilt, heavy-duty wheelset for your heavy, long-travel e-mountain bike, the new WTB HTZ i30 wheels are purpose built to take any abuse you can dish out. The rims have 20% thicker walls, spokes are heavier gauge and custom butted to be thicker at the hubs, and the rear axle is oversized.
The rear hub has five bearings, THREE inside HG/XD freehub bodies (Micro Spline gets FOUR!), to handle the extra torque. Heat sinks at the brake rotor mounts claim to reduce rotor temps by 10% on long descents, improving braking. They’re heavy, but they’re affordable and tough. Available in 27.5″ and 29er.
Hunt Proven MTB wheels for XC, Enduro racing
The new Hunt Proven carbon mountain bike wheels have been in testing for years by 2x XC national champ Isla Short and 3x British EN champ Katy Curd. Front and rear rims have unique profiles, with layups tuned for compliance, stiffness & impact protection based on their use case and position on the bike.
The 29er-only XC set is 1469g, and the EN wheels come in 29er, 27.5, and mullet sets with weights from 1,837g to 1,929g. All rims are 30mm wide internally and all wheelsets retail for $1,099, shipping in late October.
MW Altosphere ultralight waterproof cycling jackets, vests
If you’ve ever had a piece of Mission Workshop kit, then you know. And the new Altosphere wind- and waterproof jacket and vest are their lightest ever fully weatherproof shells, and their first truly designed for road & gravel cycling.
Using a two-layer Italian stretch laminate material, it’s hydrophilic to repel rain and help sweat evaporate out. An eco-friendly DWR treatment boosts its performance, and untaped seams provide a full movement range. Two-way zips help you vent as needed. Available now, while supplies last.
- Canyon launches Humuhumunukunukuapua’a-inspired tri bikes
- Your Zwift HoloClone is now ghosting you
- K-Edge has limited edition Green ano computer mounts
- Gravel Worlds will donate $2/entry to diversity efforts in 2023
- Chrome’s Fog Collection is live, inspired by their local gray skies
- Snēk’s new merino pocket tee is perfect for casual rides
- Kinekt adds a suspension stem for commuter bikes
- Mongoose Motomag BMX Wheels get a limited re-release
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