Seatpost and stem manufacturer finally adds a drop handlebar to range

Thomson, a company well known for their stems and seatposts, have finally produced what many of us have been waiting for, a road drop handlebar. Thompson lacked the necessary carbon fibre expertise for this project so they’ve worked with Toray, the world's largest producer of carbon fibre.

Thomson’s David Parrett explained to us that unlike most road handlebars, which are produced as three individual parts and moulded together, these are made as one-piece. This makes them stronger, stiffer and lighter, he claims. They’re produced by moulding over an EPS mandrel that creates a very smooth inner surface. Cannondale use it for their SuperSix Evo, as well as other manufacturers.

They are certainly light, the Road bar weighing just 188g (40cm): a very competitive weight. They're available in four sizes and each has a size-specific drop: the wider the bar, the deeper the drop. Drops are: 40cm - 137mm; 42cm - 140mm; 44cm - 140mm; 46cm - 143mm. The tops have a slight aero/wing shape and a short reach (78.5mm). There are channels for concealing cable outer casing under the bars. The price? That’ll be £240.

And for cyclocross riders there’s the KFC-One Katie Compton Signature ‘cross bar. It’s made in the same fashion as the Road bar but there are extra layers of carbon in the layup to ensure it can stand up to the punishment that ‘cross racers usually dish out to their bikes and equipment.

It also has a slightly different shape, with a round top section and flats on the bottom of the bar to create a very round shape when you’ve taped them up. The top is very wide so there’s space for auxiliary brake levers and they’re 10% shallower with a rounder drop. They'll cost £255 and weigh 205g.


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.


russyparkin [570 posts] 5 years ago

may just be me here (as a former mtb rider) but i see Thompson as a mtb component maker. i think the inline post is a work of art but the bent tube to create the layback is quirky but it put me off following a thompson finish kit to my road transition

JayDawg [4 posts] 5 years ago

I agree that the setback seat post they make isn't the prettiest thing in the world. Thomson certainly do seem to have a good reputation in the mtb world, so maybe that will carry over for them. I think they have a chance of building a following, specifically for cyclocross and touring type riders, who want tough components and might trust Thomson over some of the established road brands. Mtb riders moving to 'cross or road may gravitate toward Thomson's stuff, as well.

andyspaceman [254 posts] 5 years ago

I have a silver stem and Masterpiece setback seatpost on my steel road bike, and they look the part. Though I do concede that it took me a while to come to love the kinked post.

I'm also from an MTB background, and always felt that the lack of a Thomson handlebar was the biggest missed commercial opportunity in cycling - collar'n'cuffs and all that.

Also worth mentioning that their Masterpiece is a really comfortable post - it definitely has a shade more 'give' than the Elite.

seabass89 [212 posts] 5 years ago

They look like handlebars indeed..