“Don’t just finish it, crush it,” is the bold strapline from the marketing campaign for Spanish manufacturer Orbea’s new mid-range Ordu OME time trial bike (Orbea Monocoque Evolution). With prices starting from £1,699 and a completely revamped frame they claim is 16% more aero than the previous model, the company is hoping it will appeal to a wider audience of time trial and triathlon enthusiasts.
The new model aims sits beneath the top-end Ordu OMR time trial bike introduced last year and replaces the previous Ordu Silver. Orbea pitch the bike as the more affordable option for amateur time trial and triathlon athletes, such as those just starting out and looking for a time trial bike that won't break the bank compared to the top-end models in their range. It’s still a fully UCI compliant frame however and could be raced at the highest level.
The new Ordu OME is a complete redesign of the previous model, with changes focused on improving the aerodynamic performance as well as stiffness. They’ve also updated the size range to improve fit, with four sizes which Orbea are confidence will cater for a wide range of rider heights.
Updated frame is more aero and stiffer
Rather than use a tapered head tube, the Ordu OME uses a straight 1 1/8in steerer tube to keep the head tube narrow, just 38mm in fact, to minimise frontal surface area. All cables are internally routed as well and it’s Di2 compatible. They’ve worked on minimising exposed cables as much as possible with the routing.
While the top-end Ordu OMR time trial bike uses a complex integrated stem design and concealed brake calipers, the new Ordu OME opts for simplicity with a regular stem and regular brake calipers in the usual locations. That will certainly reduce build time and make it easier to service and look after.
The main tubes of the frame are all aero shaped as you'd expect, with a deep down tube and rear wheel hugging curved seat tube. Up front is a deep flanked head tube junction and there's an aero profiled seatpost with reverse mounted seatclamp.
A combination of high and medium modulus carbon fibre is used in the construction of the frame. They’ve also moved to a press-fit BB86 bottom bracket, wider than the old BB30, which should boost frame stiffness. The down tube features three mounts so you can fit two standard bottle cages or one of those aerodynamic bottles lower down in the frame. There are also mounts on the top tube for a small pack or storage unit for carrying gels.
The Ordu OME was tested in a wind tunnel, and they claim the new bike is 16% more aerodynamic than the outgoing Ordu Silver. They don't dish out any other claims for its speed, but they do reveal some interesting findings. The frame can be used with two regular round bottles or one aero bottle, and they way a single Arundel Chrono aero water bottle on the seat tube is 1 watt faster than no bottle, while a regular round bottle in this location requires an extra 4 watts. Orbea’s claims, not ours.
Beside the extra aero efficiency, Orbea claim to have improved the frame stiffness despite the narrower tube profiles prompted by trying to reduce the frontal surface area. They claim the “Ordu OME is more aerodynamic than its predecessor and is significantly stiffer as well,” and that this “translates to a faster bike that handles better and delivers more power to the road.
Perhaps the biggest challenge for anyone taking up time trial or triathlon is getting the right size and a good fit. They’re now offering the Ordu OME in four sizes, XS, SM, MD, and LG, which they’re confident will ensures anyone can fit the bike. The two smaller frame sizes use a 53mm offset fork and the two large sizes a 45mm offset fork, which along with a different head tube angle provides the desired steering and front triangle geometry.
Orbea have also switched to stack and reach in recent years as it’s a more useful metric for choosing the right size bike. Stack is the vertical distance from the centre of the bottom bracket to the top of the head tube, reach is the horizontal distance from the centre of the bottom bracket to the top centre of the head tube.
No details on pricing, builds and availability at the moment. More over at http://www.orbea.com/gb-en/sites/ordu-2015/
David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.