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Specialized’s Rio Olympic race bikes will change colour with temperature

Olympic race bikes will change colour based on temperature from red to yellow

Specialized has revealed its race bikes for the Rio Olympics will have a special paint job that changes colour based on the temperature, transforming from red to yellow at 22ºC.

"Below 22˚C, the paint reflects the warm, orange embers of fire, and as things heat up, a striking yellow emerges," says Specialized.

Announcing the new bikes on its Facebook page with the video above, Specialized says: “Almost 3000 years ago, the pinnacle of sport was celebrated with fire. Today, we honour the Gods of Sport by bringing the flame back to competition. Spark the torch once again with this limited edition collection of fiery bikes and gear.”

The paint job will be used on the Tarmac and Amira men and women’s road bikes, and the Epic for the mountain bike race, which this year will controversially include Peter Sagan.

The temperature that Specialized has selected for the colour transformation is based on the average temperature in Rio de Janeiro at this time of year. 

specialized rio olympics.jpg

Specialized will also provide matching helmets and looks to be offering a full outfit based around the red and yellow, with jerseys, gloves, socks, bottles and caps, which will all be available to buy soon. Prices haven’t been confirmed yet but as soon as we know we’ll update this article .

Specialized started this trend of specially painted bikes for the Olympics at London in 2012, with red bikes designed to avoid the IOC’s strict branding rules, as well as ensuring maximum marketing potential. Other bike brands have copied Specialized, including Scott and Canyon.

David worked on the tech team from 2012-2020. Previously he was editor of 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, and you can now find him over on his own YouTube channel David Arthur - Just Ride Bikes

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