CORE Bike 2014: Storck, Lightweight, Ritte and Cipollini
A £15,000, 5.5kg Storck Aernario and Lightweight's new 790g carbon frame
We're back from Core Bike Show 2014. We gave you all a quick preview on Monday, now we're back in the office here are some of our favourite bikes from the show including Storck, Lightweight, Ritte and Cipollini.
Storck Aernario range expands
No surprise that Storck had a couple of interesting bikes in display, including the new Aernario Basic. It uses the new Aernario aero frame Storck launched a couple of years ago, bungs a Shimano Ultegra Di2 groupset on it with a pair of Mavic wheels and Storck finishing kit, and costs £4,400. It’s also the only gloss paint finish they currently offer, and in this blue we think it looks really good.
All the tube profiles have been designed and shaped to minimise drag. The down tube has a rounded frontal surface area with a teardrop tail, developed using CFD (computational fluid dynamics). It’s a cross-section which they claim maintains a high level of stiffness and vibration damping while also being aero.
They stick with a round seatpost because Storck reckon the comfort benefits of a round versus aero post outweighs any aero advantage. Cables are routed internally and there is an integrated seat clamp. We can't wait to ride it.
If you’re feeling a bit flush, then you could plump for this, the Aernario Signature Edition. It’s been created specially to celebrate head honch Markus Storck’s 50th birthday. That’s quite a birthday present to yourself. Oh, did we mention it costs £15,000?
For that you get a very custom bike. The underlying Aernario frame isn’t finished with the usual paint or protective lacquer, instead it has a raw finish. They reckon the raw finish is possible ‘because of the ultra high manufacturing quality’ they're offering. It obviously shows off the naked carbon fibre construction which is fascinating to look at up close.
There’s no decals, instead you get Markus’ signature and a serial number on the top tube. The frame has been built up with some special kit, as you'd expect for the price. As a result, Storkc reckon it weighs just 5.5kg (12.12 lb) , but we didn’t have our scales to hand to verify that figure. It certainly doesn't take much strength to loft it in the air with one finger.
The Lightweight Meilenstein Obermayer wheels have bespoke aero hubs, the Storck Powerarm carbon cranks cost £1,200 and don't have any decals to match the frame, and a Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 electronic groupset is fitted and paired with THM Fibula Carbon brakes.
Also on display was the Aernario Disc. We first saw this at Eurobike last year, we even video interviewed Markus about this bike. It’s a disc-specific version of the regular Aernario, but has a brand new fork designed to accommodate the disc brake. The rear stays have been completely redesigned too, with a modified carbon fibre layup to deal with the forces from the discs.
It’s also one of the only new breed of disc road bikes with bolt-thru axles at both ends. Bolt-through axles are a large diameter hollow axle which thread into the enclosed dropout. They’re commonplace on mountain bikes, and some people we speak to expect them to also become popular on road disc bikes within a couple of years. At the moment most manufacturers are sticking to conventional quick release axles. Time will tell which way the wind blows on that aspect of modern road bike design.
Lightweight Urgestalt and Autobahn Disc wheel
Lightweight showed their new Urgestalt frame at Core Bike Show, the first time we’ve seen it since it was launched at Eurobike, the German bike show last autumn. Lightweight has a mighty reputation for producing some of the lightest, and most expensive, carbon fibre wheels, and they have decided to branch out.
Their first shot at making a frame is as impressive as you might imagine, the frame weighs a claimed 790g and with the fork, headset and seatpost weighs a claimed 1,340g. This bike here, with Shimano Ultegra Di2, PRO finishing kit and Meilenstein tubular wheels, can’t have weighed much more than 6kg, using nothing but our finely honed weighing arms.
The frame is constructed from a mix of high modulus fibre types, using unidirectional and multidirectional weave according to the part of the frame. The frame has a pressfit bottom bracket and tapered head tube, and a dedicated seatpost with the seatclamp hidden inside the top tube. All cables are routed internally and it’s compatible with mechanical and electronic groupsets. There’s space for 25mm tyres.
You probably want to know the price don’t you? Are you ready? It’s £3,950 for the frameset. Yup, it’s not cheap, but it was never going to be was it.
And here is how here it arives in a box. I tried my best to smuggle it out of the building, to no avail. I’ve ridden the bike, albeit very briefly, at the Eurobike Demo Day last year, and I was stunned at the startling acceleration and direct handling. We’re working on getting a test bike in for review so we can give you a thorough and indepth review.
The parent company of Lightweight also produces carbon fibre components for the military and space industries, and this gives them access to carbon that other bike companies don’t have.
The carbon ‘spokes’ you can easily discern on this disc is made from a carbon fibre that Lightweight tells us costs €1,800 a kilogram. The don't use much of it, the wheel weighs a claimed 740g, but they reckon they’ve made a 600g version for a certain Spanish cyclist.
We gave you a little glimpse at Ritte, a US bike brand heavily inspired by Belgian cycling culture, in our preview article. They're now being distributed in the UK by SIlverfish, and a test bike is winging its way to us very soon.
They showed two frames, the Bosberg and this, the racier Vlaanderen. It’s made from high-modulus carbon fibre with a BB30 bottom bracket and integrated seatmast. Everything about is is oversized, and the geometry has been tailored for comfort over long rides with a slightly longer wheelbase, for extra stability.
It also looks really cool. The Flemish Lion has been restyled as a headbadge and this frame is painted using the Belgian national cycling kit colours. All cables are routed internally, it’s Di2-compatible and has a tapered 1-1/8" to 1 - 1/4" head tube. We like the fact it takes 25mm tyres, so you can fit some nicer rubber for riding the Belgian pavé.
Ritte are heavily inspired by Belgian cycling culture; the classics, cobbles, frites and beer. The name comes from Henri “Ritte” Van Lerberghe who showed up to the 1919 Flanders startline without a bike, borrowed one from a local, and attacked the peloton instantly. Such was his lead, that he had time to stop in a pub for a drink. One turned into four, and he still had the time and energy to get back on his bike and win the race. It’s that sort of spirit of racing and riding that inspires Ritte.
Cipollini didn't have anything new, unless you count this new fluoro yellow edition of the Bond as new. Fluoro has become quite popular in cycling over the past years, more so in clothing but we've seen a few bikes adding fluoro details, but Cipollini have possibly overdone it we reckon. Certainly a head-turner. Is this the tipping point for the fluoro trend?
More from Core Bike Show soon...