We headed off to the tradeshow of bikes and accessories distributor Paligap yesterday to see a whole load of new products from some of the big brands. Here are the highlights from Aventi, Ritchey, DMT, Brev.M, Cipollini, Selev, Solo and PDW...
What do you know about Avanti bikes? Not much, we’re guessing, so it’s a good job we’re here to educate you. Avanti come from a land Down Under. No, not that one; New Zealand. The range is large and it’s designed by them rather than being generic product with Avanti’s name stuck on it. They covers pretty much every area of cycling: mountain bikes, road bikes, commuters, kids’ bikes… you name it, they’ve got it. We’ll just give you a few of the key bikes…
This is the carbon Avanti Cadent Team which is the top-level endurance bike. And by ‘endurance’ Avanti mean what we’d call a sportive bike – so, lightweight and fast but with a relaxed ride position… or at least relaxed compared to a full-on race bike. Avanti also use skinny and slightly bowing seatstays on the Cadent range to iron out vibration and keep the ride comfy. Well, that’s the idea. We’ve not had the chance to ride one yet so we couldn’t tell you if it works.
The Cadent Team comes with a BB86 oversized bottom bracket and a lot of components from Avanti’s own Zero brand although we can’t give you a price because it has yet to be finalized.
Below the Cadents come the alloy Giros and the women’s Vitale bikes. Avanti also do equivalent performance bikes in the Quantum and women’s Questa ranges. These get the same level of components but the frame is designed to be more racy.
Avanti’s new Chrono Evo II time trial bike looks stunning. They reckon they’ve been working on it for the past 2 ½ years and that it has put in an amazing performance in the wind tunnel… although everyone says that when they bring out a new TT bike.
The Chrono certainly looks the part. The front brake is integrated into the fork, for example, with just the shoes extending out.
The stem sits flush with the top tube and that’s the brains of Shimano’s Di2 electronic shift system sitting in there.
The back brake sits underneath the bottom bracket with the Di2 battery tucked away down there too.
The last Avanti bike we’ll show you is the Inc, which is an urban do-it-all machine in the style of a Cannondale Bad Boy.
It’s certainly as black as the Bad Boy. This one is belt driven – a Gates Carbon Drive system with an eccentric bottom bracket to take up the slack.
It’s the brand new CenterTrack version that’s used here. There’s a slit in the middle of the belt that sits on a ridge on the track. The manufacturer reckons it’s stronger and slimmer than previously with better dirt-shedding abilities.
Gear’s come courtesy of Shimano’s Alfine hub. Both eight and 11-speed versions will be available although, as with the rest of the Avanti range, prices have yet to be set.
Complete bikes will now be available from US fixie specialists Brev.M, as well as the parts that have been around for a while.
The looker of the bunch is this Speciale Fixed LTD (main pic) which will set you back £600. The frame is Reynolds 525 double-butted cromo steel with a stylish paintjob and some neat little features like the attractive bottle cage mounts. The lugged fork is shiny steel too. Whether or not you’re a fixie aficionado, you have to say it looks cool.
The wheels are Brev.M’s own with 32mm deep rims that colour-match the hubs. Speaking of hubs, the rear one is flip/flop so you can run the bike as either a fixed or a singlespeed.
The bike is available in pearl white with a dropped bar for the same price.
The other bikes in the range are almost as eye-catching. This is the Speciale Fixed in lime green. Like the LTD version, it comes with a double-butted cromo frame, but it gets a slightly different spec and is 50 quid cheaper.
The Speciale Uno is the cheapest bike in the range at £460. Again, it’s cromo, but you don’t get the double butting here. Decked out in white, this riser barred version looks a lot like a ghost bike to us; the drop bar model is black.
Brev do a whole bunch of funky parts like this argyle saddle (£25)…
…And a whole bunch of pedals. The Retro Quill pedals (£25) come in seven different colours.
The wheel range is colourful too. These ones have 36 spokes and a 40mm-deep rim, and a pair will cost you £220.
Ritchey have a new all-in-one bar/stem combo called the MonoCurve. The bar section is a carbon monocoque that’s moulded to a carbon stem, and the steerer tube clamp is alloy. Priced at £425, it’s not cheap… but no integrated carbon cockpit is. The MonoCurve is available in various different lengths and widths and Ritchey are claiming a weight of 353g, which is pretty healthy.
Ritchey have a new stem design too, called the C260. Check out the front plate; it’s diddy. The stem itself wraps 260° around your handlebar with the front plate taking up just 100°.
What’s the point? Ritchey reckon it distributes the stress more evenly through the bar, stem body, front plate and bolts, increases stiffness and allows them to use smaller than normal (4mm) bolts. The claimed weight is 103g for the 7050 alloy version – a drop of 20g from Ritchey’s 4Axis design – and they say it’s 30% stiffer.
The steerer tube clamp uses three bolts and a curved slot which Ritchey say reduces stress on the fork. The WCS alloy version costs £80-95 (depending on the finish) while the WCS Matrix carbon model is £155.
With the resurgence of cyclocross, the Ritchey Swiss Cross frame has come out of retirement. Looking decidedly skinny and retro, it’s triple-butted steel with a head tube that takes now standard 1 1/8in headset bearings this time around. The frameset is available in 49-59cm sizes at £930.
DMT is an Italian shoe brand that doesn’t get as much attention as it deserves in the UK. We’ll have a chat with the nice people at Paligap to see if we can get some in for review on road.cc.
This is the top level Prisma 2.0 which comes with a carbon sole and a microfibre upper and a new Atop closure. You turn the dial at the top to adjust the tension on the lace, a lot like a Boa system. A pair of these bad boys will cost you £235.
The Team version of the Prisma 2 is £245.
The three-strapped Radical 2.0 is £175. Like the Prisma, it comes with a carbon sole.
The Impact 2.0 comes with a nylon/glass fibre sole and a new micro-ratchet fastening for £130…
…While the Vision 2.0 (£95) has the same sole but with a three-strap Velcro closure.
The women’s version of the Vision 2.0 is the same price. The women's version? With blue bits? Radical.
It’s a crazy idea but the Madison (£155) track shoes come with laces. That’ll never catch on. The downside is that you can’t adjust them one-handed from the saddle although we can imagine the style being popular with urban fashionistas. Maybe. Who knows?
The DMT Tri shoe gets a carbon sole, a single strap closure and a heel loop to help you get your foot inside while you’re moving. The upper is mostly mesh to let plenty of air in to dry out wet feet. A pair of theses costs £155.
Selev is another Italian company that Paligap have just begun to distribute – and they actually manufacture in Italy rather than having it done in the Far East. We’ve never reviewed any of their helmets on road.cc so we’ll be looking to rectify that soon.
The top end model is this XP (above) that weighs 240g and will cost about £140 (Selev prices have yet to be confirmed). It has an internal skeleton within the high-density polystyrene to add extra strength. In this red, white and green version it looks as Italian as a cappuccino pizza.
The Matrix will be around £110. With that vent in the front, it looks a little like a Specialized lid – maybe a Piranha from way back.
The Tempo time trial helmet, on the other hand, could hardly look more modern with its detachable visor and earpieces. There’s quite a bit of venting going on here compare to most other TT helmets so we’re guessing it’ll be most valuable in hot weather. This one will be priced at about £220.
We covered the new Cipollini Logos road frame when we saw it at Eurobike so we won’t go over that again. There’s new Cipollini clothing, though.
The short-sleeve jerseys all come with full length zips but expect them to be priced at well over £100 a go.
Solo shirts are a little cheaper although you're still looking at £80 for a short-sleeved ones. They have a retro feel although they’re made from polyester with knitted arm and neck bands.
The design of this Solo Retro-tech gilet is new. The membrane fabric and sealed zip mean the front is both windproof and waterproof.
It’s hard to tell from the photo but that tall, close-fitting collar is quite a thick, almost rubbery fabric.
We’ve probably shown you these PDW (Portland Design Works) grips before but they’re pretty cool so here they are again. These are the bamboo Panda Treats…
…And these are the Dapper Dans. They come in a standard round shape as well as this Ergo version that fills up your palm.
Or you could pimp your ride with Speed Metal grips which come in a whole bunch of different colours to match your frame, wheels, hair or whatever.
Mat has worked for more bike magazines than anyone else in the known universe, dating back to a time when this was all just fields. He's been road.cc technical editor for four years, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. When he's not cycling around Wiltshire, he's running around it, or possibly swimming (sadly, he's one of those 'triathletes'). Mat is a youthful 42-year-old Cambridge graduate, GSOH etc.