We’re lucky enough to get some good-looking bikes in for review here at Road.cc and this new titanium model from Pretorius is another head turner in an understated kind of way.
You might not have heard of Pretorius before so let’s start by telling you a little about the brand…
Pretorius Bikes is a shop just off Shoreditch High Street in London. It’s been around since 2008. They offer Colnago, Scott and Cinelli bikes, and their own titanium models too. Like the other two options in the lineup – and the majority of ti bikes out there – the Outeniqua road bike is made from 3Al-2.5V titanium (meaning there’s 3% aluminium in the alloy, and 2.5% vanadium) which has excellent fatigue life and resistance to corrosion.
The Outeniqua’s frame is pretty classic looking; they’ve not gone over the top with the shaping here. The top tube slopes very slightly downwards towards the seat tube but it’s far from the most compact of compact geometries. The top tube slims down a little along its length too – from 38mm to 34mm – although you have to look pretty closely to spot that.
If you think the head tube looks chunky, that’s because it is. It has a 44mm internal diameter, taking a Chris King 1 1/8in InSet bearing at the top and a 1 1/2in external headset cup at the bottom, the extra width being designed to provide more front end stiffness. The fork is an Enve Road 2.0 which is full moulded carbon fibre, including the dropouts, and it weighs in at just 350g.
The down tube is oversized although, with a 42mm diameter, not excessively so, and the seatstays taper down from 22mm at the bottom bracket shell to 19mm at the dropouts. Speaking of the dropouts, they’re a neat half-moon design while the cable stops and bottle cage mounts are neatly welded in place.
There’s nothing too strange about the Outeniqua’s geometry. We have the large (58cm) model in on test and that comes with 73.5/73° frame angles, a 57cm effective top tube and a 19cm head tube – that’s including the stack height of the headset. It’s certainly a race-centric set-up – your ride position is low and stretched – but you wouldn’t call it extreme.
Our model has a brushed finish so any little scratches are easily buffed away with some wire wool. You can go for a painted finish if you prefer. Custom paint jobs are available and start from £200. You can also choose from a range of eight different decal colour options and select the headset colour.
The Outeniqua is available as a frameset including the Enve fork and Chris King headset. That will set you back £1,950. You can have it built up however you like so we opted for high-end components throughout… well, the guys at Pretorius did offer. We have a Campagnolo Super Record groupset, Reynolds Thirty Two carbon-rimmed wheels and Schwalbe Ultremo ZX tyres.
The handlebar, stem and seatpost (31.6mm diameter) are all carbon offerings from Enve while the saddle is a Selle Italia SLR which is, of course, the best saddle in the world (according to me). Oh, and we have a bottle cage and bar tape from Arundel on there too.
That little lot weighs in at 7.2kg – which is a highly respectable 15.8lb – and retails for £5,999.
Everyone around here reckons it’s a really good-looking bike. Cool, classy… words like that are getting bandied about. But so far we haven’t got a clue how the Pretorius rides so the next item on the agenda is to get out and get the miles in. We’ll let you know how we get on; there’s a full review coming your way shortly. In the meantime, check out the Pretorius Bikes website.
Mat has worked for loads of bike magazines over the past 20 years, and been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. He's been road.cc technical editor for seven 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. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a past winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer.