This week we have a slick new Ridley all-road bike, two incredibly lightweight e-mountain bikes (that go about saving grams very differently), a rippin’ new Commençal trail bike, Ritchey celebrates 50 years, an interesting MTB saddle, wildly expensive (and radically different) TT aero bars, and more!
Here’s the best new stuff this week:
- Ridley Grifn all-road bike
- Scott Lumen ultralight eMTB
- Orbea Rise eMTB is light, too
- Commençal Tempo trail bike
- Ritchey Swiss Cross CX bike
- Predator’s $1,800 aero bars
- Factor x Duke art bike
- BikeYoke “Lite” saddles
- DeFeet Wooleator goes Pro
- New Zwift Urukazi roads
Ridley Grifn all-road bike splits gravel & road
Like it’s hybrid animal namesake, the new Ridley Grifn is equal parts speedy road bike and gravel bike. It fits up to 700x38mm tires (or 700×40 with a 1x drivetrain), or fit fenders with 32mm tires for a quick all-season commuter.
Three mounting points each on seat tube, and top and bottom of downtube, plus covered top tube mounts, give you plenty of storage options, and internal fork/frame dynamo wire ports make it easy to add lights. Geometry sits between their Fenix road and Kanzo gravel bikes. Frame weight is 990g (M, unpainted), and a complete bike with Shimano GRX Di2 is 8.5kg (18.75lb). From €3,199 to €5,499.
Scott Lumen eMTB weighs less than a regular mountain bike
At a quick glance, you’d have a really hard time telling the new Scott Lumen eMTB apart from the Scott Spark XC bikes and just-launched Scott Genius trail bikes. It even gets the Twinloc remote and dual-travel suspension.
But the Lumen is hiding a TQ motor and 360Wh battery inside, giving it a nearly invisible, silent 50Nm boost. Add the 160Wh range extender and you’ll still have room for a water bottle inside the frame, too!
The TQ HPR50 motor has become the darling of ultra-lightweight e-mountain bikes, and the only concession Scott made to fit it was moving the rear shock’s placement slightly upward.
It gets the Spark RC’s pivotless flex seatstays (but bumps rear travel to 130mm with 130mm forks) and the Genius’ angle-adjust headset and 29×2.6″ tire clearance. Syncros integrated cockpits and high-end spec put the top model under 15.5kg (~34.2lb). Bikes from $6,999 to $15,999. (Video overview here, tech video here)
New, lighter Orbea Rise eMTB boosts range by cutting output
Taking a different approach to making a lightweight eMTB, the new Orbea Rise uses a Shimano EP motor, but gets custom firmware to dial the assist down to 60Nm (stock output is 85Nm).The reduced output gives you Shimano’s smooth power delivery, but relies more on your legs to increase the range by a claimed 1.5x over standard e-bikes.
A lightweight, efficient full suspension frame helps, too, as do smaller custom batteries. They say their 540Wh battery delivers range comparable to bigger bikes’ 810Wh batteries (because you’re doing more of the work). For shorter rides, swap in the even lighter 360Wh battery, or add the 252Wh range extender to go longer.
Bluetooth connectivity lets you sync with Garmin IQ to show mode & battery status on compatible head units and smartwatches. It also captures ride data and the bike’s performance data, showing battery usage and related metrics afterward.
The trail bike gets 140mm rear travel, with either 140mm Fox 34 or 150mm Fox 36 forks. The lightest model weighs just 15.9kg (~35lb). Prices from $5,299 to $11,499, available in alloy and carbon frames. (Video overview here)
Commençal Tempo trail bike gets efficiently playful VPP suspension
The all-new Commençal Tempo is their first VPP suspension design, creating 125mm of rear wheel travel that pedals efficiently, but gets active when you push it into the terrain. Designed to be ridden hard and fast, the 29er alloy frame is paired with a wide variety of 140mm forks, including an Ohlins edition shown here.
A slack 65.5º head angle, size-specific chainstay lengths, good reach, and low standover should make for a very nimble-yet-stable bike. Eight models from $3,200 to $6,200 make it an affordable ripper. Preorder now, some ship as early as December 30, others not ’til Summer 2023. (action video here)
Ritchey Swiss Cross 50th anniversary cyclocross bike
First introduced in the mid-1990s, the Ritchey Swiss Cross cyclocross bike was named for its top pilot, Swiss cycling legend Thomas Frischknecht. To celebrate the brand’s 50th anniversary, it’s getting a fresh coat of Ritchey Red paint over the TIG-welded, heat treated, triple-butted Logic steel frame.
Clearance for 700x40mm tires, thru axles, and a carbon fork (with 1-1/8″ straight steerer) highlight, and the $1,699 framesets include headset and the integrated seat collar pinch bolt at the top of the seatstays. Available in six sizes, frame weight is 1,950g, fork is 430g, both without axles on board.
You can try Predator’s $1,800 aero bars in the Metaverse
Submit about a hundred photos of yourself in your TT tuck position and Predator Cycling will use AI to design a custom aero bar set and let you feel them out in the Metaverse, with full VR if you’ve got the headset.
Then, the bars’ skeleton is 3D printed and wrapped with carbon fiber for $1,795. Add a CFD analysis package (starts at +$1,000) and they’ll run simulations that take your full body position into account and tweak the bars to improve your entire body-on-bike aerodynamics.
Factor x Duke limited edition art bike
Created for ambassador (and Rapha model) Duke Agyapong, this custom Factor VAM road bike decorated by creative director Jay Gundzik expresses the diversity, poetry, and fashion of the recipient.
The artwork is inspired by Duke’s experiences growing up, riding, and racing in the UK as a transplant from Ghana. It includes lines form his poem BLK about the black experience and the work still to be done to reach equality. While Duke’s bike is a true 1/1, replica’s without his photo on them are available in limited quantities.
BikeYoke Sagma saddles lose suspension, keep special foam
BikeYoke’s original Sagma suspension saddles used elastomer-damped mounts under the rails to provide bump absorption and a unique tilting feature during cornering (watch the video here).
Now, they have a Sagma Lite that loses the suspension, but keeps the low-rebound, vibration-damping “idbeads” foam and short ergo shape. Available with CroMo (€89, 225g) or Carbon (€139, 169g) rails. Size is 142x242mm. Aimed at MTB, sounds like it would work well for gravel, too.
DeFeet Wooleator Pro gets technical (and super soft)
Using a new Shaniko merino wool from Oregon, a completely flat/seamless toe closure, and Lycra in the heel and toe, the new DeFeet Wooleator Pro is softer and has an improved fit over the original. The all-season socks come in three heights, MSRP from $20 to $22.
Zwift says “What’s up, beaches?!?”
The new Urukazi expansion gives the Zwift Makuri Islands map almost 50 miles. Meaning Shore (“uru”) Breeze (“kazi”), the new coastal roads evoke the southern Japanese archipelago, offering you pavement, gravel, and a new surface – Sand.
Head to the beaches from Yumezi and you’ll ride through a slot canyon, or roll from Neokyo to explore the caves between them. In total there are 8 new routes to ride, and look for the latest smart trainers to (try to) mimic the feel of slogging through soft sand.
“Braking- It’s best to brake hard in one spot and then get off your brakes rather than dragging them. Pick a spot before your turn that is free of obstacles and brake hard with maximum down pressure and then let off as you go through the turn.” – Neko Mulally, pro downhiller
Danny Macaskill still has what it takes in his latest drop, Postcard from San Francisco.
- Pretty sure I need the High Camp Highball Shaker for my vanlife
- 4 reasons your bottom bracket bearings can fail early
- IMBA’s infographic on eMTB/e-Bike classifications & legality
- Here’s a factory tour of HED Cycling’s facility
- Rapha investors back 2x hub maker Classified Cycling
- Nukeproof is back in the US
- Gore-Tex discontinues Shakedry, get it while you can
- New Rapha wool MTB shirts come with iron-on repair patches
- Wolf Tooth’s fall Scratch-and-Dent Sale is on
- Get 20% off SRAM-equipped Pivot bikes thru 2022 (U.S. only)
- Chris King’s Midnight Blue components are now shipping
- Industry Nine’s Hydra Fat Bike hubs are back, order by 12/31
- New Continental Divide Nat’l Monument protects CO MTB trails!
- The 2023 BC Bike Race returns to Van Isle (and is 75% sold out)
- Some pros are creating a US XC race series focused on fun
- Finally, a refillable toothpaste tube for travel & bikepacking
The Lunch Ride is a weekly TL;DR recap of the best new cycling products and tech, written for Riders, not Algorithms. SUBSCRIBE HERE to get it in your inbox every Friday.
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