Eurobike is this week, so there’s a TON of new stuff, so here’s a mega roundup grouped by Road/Gravel and MTB, including a few prototypes! Next week’s likely to be big, too, as there’s way more launching at EB than I could put in one post, plus le Tour starts soon, so there’ll be new stuff there, too. Here’s the best new stuff this week:
Road & Gravel Stuff
- Felt FR/VR road bikes
- Merida Scultura GR
- More 3T x Lamborghini
- Litespeed Spezia FI
- Look 795/796
- Corima EVO wheels
- Hunt prototype wheels
- Rotor 2INpower SL
- Silver Shimano shoes
- Brooks C17 Migration
- Selle San Marco Regal Short
- CyclingCeramic OSPW
- Commençal Meta
- Exept Base Nato
- Norco Fluid VLT
- Bosch SL eMTB motor
- Pinion gearbox + motor
- CushCore eMTB inserts
- WTB updates saddles
- Hutchinson Wyrm
- Goodyear Peak SL
- Schwalbe Tacky Chan
- American Classic’s new treads
Road & Gravel Stuff
Felt FR & VR road bikes get faster
Felt Bicycles is teasing the next generation of their FR race bike and VR endurance bike. The FR (shown) has been their all-rounder, and now they’re adding aerodynamic elements like a fully integrated cockpit (but with two-piece cockpit for more flexibility) and subtle frame tweaks…and a sub-700g frame on the top model.
The VR will get more capable, expanding clearance to 700×38 tires and adding a vibration damping elastomer system to the seatpost, making it a “gravel lite” ride perfect for the modern drop bar cyclist. Full specs & deets are TBA, bikes launch in early 2024.
Merida Scultura Endurance GR gravel race bike
Modeled off their endurance road racing bike, the new Merida Scultura Endurance GR is aimed at gravel racers who prioritize speed over features…and tire size. Maxing out at 700×35, the “springy” seatstays should help make up for the lack of tire volume.
With a stated 70/30 road/gravel bias, its more for (some) BWR and Strade Bianche (aka Euro Gravel) type events over Unbound. At least it has flared handlebars. Available in two carbon and one alloy models.
3T x Lamborghini collab adds more road, gravel bikes
3T expands their Lamborghini partnership with four more bikes, two Exploro RaceMax gravel bikes (top row) and two Strada road bikes, the latter having just enjoyed a complete makeover with full internal routing and improved aerodynamics.
Meanwhile, the Exploro RaceMax Italia models use 3T’s in-house filament wound, resin transfer molding for an extremely lightweight frame, but still has the brake hose running into the top tube (which is apparently about to go away). Clockwise from top left, the Lamborghini matching colors are Verde Selvans, Oro Elios, Viola Pasifae, and Arancia Apodis.
Litespeed Spezia Fully Integrated lightweight Ti road bike
The new Litespeed Spezia FI (Fully Integrated) is their lightest ever disc brake road bike, and the sleekest, too, thanks to ENVE IN-Route fork, stem and handlebar hiding cables through the Chris King AeroSet 3 headset and around their T47i BB, keeping the rear brake hose completely hidden.
Designed for electronic drivetrains only, it gets size specific tubing, sheet formed 6/4 top tube, a bi-ovalized downtube, and ovalized seatstays to maximize performance. Clearance for 700×35 tires and a choice of wheels, tires, and cockpits let you build it for any type of (paved) riding. From $8,299.
All-new Look 795 Blade RS & 796 Monoblade RS road bikes
The new Look 795 Blade RS race bike adds more ultra-high modulus carbon to yield a 7% stiffer frame, and reshapes the head & top tubes, stays, and the area around the bottle cage mounts to improve aerodynamics by 10%. The aero cockpit hides everything internally and looks like one piece, but is actually separate to make cable routing easier.
The new fibers and frame design also dropped weight, giving it a claimed 890g frame and 435g fork (size small), and complete bike weight of 7.0kg (15.43lb, size M) in top spec. MSRP from €8490 (8490£ / $9000) to €12,990 (12990£ $14600).
The 796 Monoblade RS TT bike is also lighter and stiffer (1320g frame, 425g fork) with a new base bar that hides the brake lines inside, and (finally) switches from integrated rim brakes to modern disc brakes, and a T47 bottom bracket. Frameset only for €6990 (6990£ / $7800), availability TBA.
Corima MCC EVO & WS EVO road wheels go tubeless hookless
Corima’s made-in-France, top level MCC and WS road wheels have been updated with hookless tubeless designs (and tubulars, if you’re still into that). Both are available with 32mm & 47mm deep rims, each 21mm wide (internal, fits 25-32mm tires) filled with their structural foam to improve lateral stiffness.
The full carbon 12-spoke MCC EVO weighs 1445g-1480g and runs $4,200. The WS EVO also has carbon spokes, they just look more like normal ones. These run 1505g-1540g and cost $2300. Both roll on new, very smooth ratchet hubs with 10º engagement. (video here)
Prototype Hunt 42 Limitless Gravel Adventure wheels spotted
These upcoming Hunt 42 Limitless Gravel Adventure wheels were raced at the Unbound XL after their ultra-distance “Beyond” athletes requested something light like their standard Limitless road wheels, but tough enough for something crazy like a loaded, self-supported 350-mile gravel bike race in gnarly conditions.
They get higher spoke counts, brass nipples (versus alloy), and a new “H_Ratchet” hub internal that they wouldn’t share more details on…yet. Coming later this year, and look for more new stuff under the Coop-Hitec Tour de France Femmes team, too.
Rotor 2INpower is the lightest dual-leg power meter crankset
Weighing in at just 530g for 170mm arms with spindle, the new Rotor 2INpower SL (pronounced “twin power”) crankset is not only light, it’s also fully featured. Two independent strain gauges inside the hollow-drilled cranks measure left and right legs independently.
The antenna sticks off the back of the arm, not the spindle, so it won’t rub your ankle. The rechargeable battery is good for 250 hours per 3 hour charge and speaks ANT+ and Bluetooth to work with any head unit. They fit any of Rotor’s 104BCD spiders or direct-mount 1x and 2x chainrings, with a complete 50/34 w/ 170mm arms setup weighing just 729g.
Shimano RC903 S-Phyre Silver road shoes
These limited edition Shimano RC903 S-Phyre road bike shoes get all the features (Dynalast shape, metal BOA Li2 dials, anti-twist heel cup, lightweight microfiber upper) as the regular version, but in a shiny silver color. MSRP $450.
Brooks C17 Special Migration Gravel Race saddle
Celebrating the Migration Gravel Race in the Maasai Mara in Kenya, this special edition Brooks Cambium C17 saddle uses an organic cotton-covered vulcanized natural rubber top with steel rails and aluminum mounts to create a supportive yet compliant saddle for long gravel adventures. Weight is 464g, MSRP €200.
Selle San Marco classic reinvented as Regal Short Saddle
Inspired by their Regal Classic saddle introduced in 1989, the new Selle San Marco Regal Short builds off the popularity of shorter modern saddles. It measures 255mm long (vs 283mm) and loses the curvy F-to-R profile.
Four models available, all with cutouts in the shell, but with or without holes in the cover. Choose from carbon or manganese rails and 140mm or 165mm widths. Weights from 220g to 292g. Aimed at the gravel/bikepacking crowd, it uses a “bow rail” design to add more flex to improve comfort. Pricing TBA.
CyclingCeramic adds OSPW for latest Shimano 105
CyclingCeramic is the latest to add a Shimano 105 R7100/7150 Di2 oversize derailleur pulley cage with a barely-there design. Available with black, blue, gold, or red pulley wheels.
They spin on nearly frictionless (0.033 watts) Grade-3 ceramic bearings. Pulleys are 13/19-tooth and are compatible with cassettes up to 32-teeth. MSRP €349.
Mountain Bike Stuff
Commençal Meta V5 enduro mountain bike
In development for four years, the 5th gen Commençal Meta enduro bike has already notched 2 World Cup podiums. The triple-butted 6066 alloy frame is 29er only, has 150mm rear travel w/ 160mm forks, and provides routing for fully integrated stealth cable routing…or not, route it however you like.
Size-specific chainstay lengths, a suspension flip chip, and a playful yet planted ride feel round out the specs. Complete bikes from $3,500 to $5,800. (video here)
Exept Base Nato alloy enduro MTB is made for Finale Ligure
Made in Italy, the new Exept Base Nato is their first analog MTB, and their first to be fully designed in house and made locally. Based in mountain bike hot spot Finale Ligure, Italy, Exept launched with custom carbon road bikes but has been branching out to take full advantage of their home base’s landscape.
The steep seat angle helps you power up the climbs, and a dual-linkage rear triangle controls the 165mm rear travel. Available in two builds, with full 29er or MX wheelsets, and stock or custom geometry from €4,990.
Norco Fluid VLT lightweight eMTB
The 4th gen Norco Fluid VLT doesn’t ship until spring 2024, but it’ll come in as light as 38lbs when it does. The ultimate model has a full carbon frame with 130mm rear travel and 140mm forks, while three longer-travel options (140mm R/150mm F) will have carbon and carbon/alloy frame options topping out at a claimed 44lbs.
All of them use the new Bosch SX system (see next item), size-specific geometry, and a proven Horst Link suspension. Actual spec and tech details coming next year, but I guess they wanted to be the first to announce a bike with…
Bosch’s ultralight Performance Line SX e-MTB motor
At just 4kg (4.4lbs) for the complete system, the new Bosch Performance Line SX unit weighs about 30% less than their CX system. Power output is 55Nm (vs 85Nm) and gets a slimmer 400Wh battery pack with 250Wh range extender compatibility.
With remotes for flat and drop bars, a “sprint” mode gets you up to speed more quickly at higher cadences with a maximum 600W boost, twice the max output of the slightly lighter TQ system. The smaller unit’s 160mm Q-factor is 15mm narrower than the CX units, too, for a more natural pedaling stance. Starts shipping on bikes in late 2023.
Pinion ON-E combines gearbox with e-bike motor
Pinion is known for their bicycle gearboxes, but the new Pinion ON-E is a true powertrain, combining e-bike motor and full range gear box into one unit. The MGU (motor gearbox unit) is barely larger than a full-power motor, yet can have up to 12 speeds and 600% gear range.
The system weighs about the same as a traditional e-bike motor plus geared drivetrain, but is completely self contained and uses a clean belt drive instead of a chain to give you 10,000km service intervals.
It has up to 85Nm torque and can electronically shift standing still, under full load, and even autoshift while coasting down a descent or at a stop so you’re in the right gear when you start pedaling again. (video here)
Cushcore eMTB tire inserts
CushCore eMTB tire insert is made for heavier e-bikes, with a fluted design to provide progressively more support as the tire compresses harder into a corner or impact. Slots help sealant flow into the open area. MSRP is $160/set, mix and match 29er & 27.5″ to fit your bike.
WTB updates the original Volt, Silverado saddles
Inline for 11 and 16 years, respectively, the WTB Volt & Silverado saddles are classics, with OEM spec on countless bikes. Now, both are updated to be more comfortable than ever thanks to a new Fusion Form fiber-enhanced shell with better flex characteristics.
The Silverado gets a slightly flatter profile and shorter nose to reduce perineal pressure and make it easier to maneuver around the saddle and inch forward on those lung buster climbs. The Volt, other than the new shell, remains the same save for updated graphics. Available now in a wide variety of sizes and rail materials, ranging from $47.95 to $249.95.
Hutchinson Wyrm downcountry (and trail) mountain bike tires
Claiming to bridge that wide gap between XC and Enduro, the Hutchinson Wyrm wants to wiggle onto your do-it-all trail bike. It launches with their top-level Racing Labs construction with 66tpi casing and Hardskin puncture/cut protection in 29×2.4 only (950g).
The large-but-low profile center knobs based on their XC/gravel tires help it roll fast, with big spaces between them to shed mud. Taller, staggered side knobs boost cornering grip. (video here, and a “wyrm” is a serpentine dragon or other monster, depending on the mythology)
Goodyear Peak SL XC race tires
The new Goodyear Peak SL is aimed purely at XC racers on 29ers, coming in as light as 680g with an extremely low profile tread. Both are avialable in 2.25″ and 2.4″ widths, designed for 25-30mm internal rim widths.
The higher-end Tubeless Complete models (680g – 710g) use a lighter, more supple 120tpi casing with added sidewall breaker for more support and cut resistance. The Tubeless Ready versions (740g – 775g) use a tougher 60tpi casing with a bit more rubber on it, but with no added cut/puncture protection.
Schwalbe Tacky Chan Enduro/DH tires
The new Schwalbe Tacky Chan builds off their Magic Mary, but has longer braking edges, 10% more stable shoulder knobs, and is 8% lighter. Open space in the transition area helps shed mud, and ramped center knobs help it roll faster.
They say it’s a more precise tire, allowing more aggressive cornering. While billed as a DH tire, it’s available with Downhill, Gravity & Trail casings with Soft and Ultra Soft rubber compounds. Weights from 1080g to 1320g.
American Classic adds three new affordable treads
American Classic has a new gravel tire and two new MTB tires, all extremely affordable, and all available on Amazon. The 29×2.25 Cumbre (left) XC tire is just 690g and with a supple 120tpi casing and sidewall protection. The Terestre (center, 29×2.25, 120tpi, 745g) pairs well with it as a rear tire, rolling quickly on a closely spaced center section.
For gravel, the 700×40 Grus (right) tire comes in at 550g with the same 120tpi casing and sidewall armor. Tight, low-profile center knobs gradually progress to taller cornering knobs with more space between them to fling mud away.
Kit of the Week
It’s a summer-weight, race-cut jersey with mesh side panels, it’s made of 85% recycled water bottles. The design is inspired by the south of France, with a tricolor graphical represention of Marianne, goddess of liberty, patch on the center pocket. Available in men’s and women’s for €150.
- Restrap Bumper Bar handlebar bag shelf adds 1-1/4″ steerer sizes
- Join Campy’s Strava Challenge to win a new Super Record Wireless group
- Get wheel upgrades & free shipping on Obed bikes
- Esker’s bikes are 23% off (excluding ti models)
- New Velo Angel Revo Halo saddle uses a new super ETPU foam
- Here’s a cool custom painted BH road bike
- BBC podcast digs into the death of Pantani the Pirate
- Crank Brothers now has sticker kits for Synthesis wheels
- Here’s a FiveTen MTB shredit to get you stoked
- And Salsa’s new vid shows off Idaho’s MTB trails
- Here’s a very purple custom OPEN WI.DE gravel bike
- Strava’s desktop route builder now has more options
- Lander’s skateboards are made from reclaimed fishing nets
- Kogel is launching their aero pulley cage with premium experiences
- The BikeBac tracker works with Apple’s FindMy service
- hDrop2 is the first re-usable wearable hydration monitor
- Zwift already has steering enabled races for those new controls
- Competitive Cyclist has all your official TdF merch
- Leaf Cycles is hosting a custom Klunker Bike competition
A side note on 3T’s Italia frames, which are made to order by winding and weaving individual dry carbon fiber strands into tubes, then pumping them full of resin, is that it gives them not just complete control over the entire manufacturing process, but also gives their dealers more control over which bikes they order.
Starting in 2024, 3T’s key dealers can reserve one (or more) of 5,000 production slots, then decide on the model, size, color, and spec right before it’s made.
The goal is to eliminate pre-season orders, which usually amount to little more than guessing what colors, sizes, and builds customers might want. Guess wrong and you’ve got expensive inventory sitting on your shop floor, eating up cash flow.
Often, this standing inventory gets discounted, which hurts the brand image and the shop’s profits, too. By switching from pre-order to just-in-time delivery, 3T is creating a better system for everyone. Well, maybe not for bargain hunters…
Sage Titanium and Pursuit Cycles, among others, also build to order. This usually means lead times of a few weeks up to a few months, but it’s a generally better business model for the actual businesses involved.
Niner and Lauf, among others, use a similar model in that they build up the bikes with parts as they’re ordered. They have a larger inventory of frames in their warehouses, but don’t assemble them until the customer places the order. This helps them manage their component inventory better while still providing a quick turnaround for the customer.
The downside, of course, is when they’re left sitting on a lot of quasi-obsolete inventory when something new, like SRAM Transmission, replaces a prior model. Sometimes, that “new old stock” ends up at online retailers for a great deal.
Just thought it was interesting and wanted to share.
Have a great weekend,
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