Lightweight has introduced a new disc-specific road wheel called the Wegweiser which, in a first for the brand, uses a rim made using automatic production methods. The wheel itself is put together by hand in Germany, like the rest of the range.
Adding a degree of automation to the process means, according to Lightweight, high reproducibility, lower tolerances and integrated quality control. Plus, automation is quicker and reduces costs. That said, you’re still looking at a price of €3,240 for the Wegweiser wheelset (we don’t have a UK price yet). Well, you know, it’s all relative, isn’t it? Lightweight doesn’t exactly aim at the mass market.
So, what’s this Wegweiser wheel all about?
“The 20 carbon spokes on the rear and front wheel are manually connected with the rim ring from the outside,” says Lightweight.
“The modern rim width of 24mm combined with a flat rim height of 36mm and new spoke connections guarantee the stiffness values and riding characteristics typical for Lightweight at a total weight of less than 1,450 grams in the clincher version. In summary, this makes the Wegweiser a superior, disc system wheel with very little maintenance need.”
Lightweight gives a maximum system weight (rider plus bike) of 120kg (18st 13lb).
The brand says that its production machine is able to lay fibre bundles in the desired angle with such precision that the carbon-fibres follow the force transmission into the wheelset. The manufacturing factory in Friedrichshafen, Germany, has been producing for the last 20 years, not only cycling equipment but also carbon components for European Space Agency satellites (Lightweight is part of the Wissler Group).
The Wegweiser – the name means ‘signpost’ in German – will enter the market in spring 2017.
Lightweight is also offering its existing Fernweg wheel (tubular and clincher versions available) in a 60mm rim depth for the first time. It was previously just a 79.5mm depth.
With a more rounded, less V-shaped rim profile, it is said to offer greater crosswind stability for its depth than Lightweight's Meilenstein. The Fernweg VR 60 is aimed at time trial riders and triathletes, but is also designed for road race use.
Lightweight has offered its Urgestalt frame for the past three years and it is now available in a flat mount disc brake version for the first time.
The stays have been beefed up over those of the rim brake model, and it has 12mm thru axles front and rear. The head tube is tapered (1 1/8in to 1 1/2in) and the bottom bracket is BB386Evo.
Lightweight claims that the 27.2mm seatpost and external seat clamp allow better flex for more comfort.
The Urgestalt Disc is compatible with electronic and mechanical gear systems and it’s superlight with a claimed frame weight of 780g.
Lightweight is offering the rim brake Urgestalt in limited colour runs too.
A final new offering from Lightweight is the Ride bike, the name coming from Rahmenbau in Deutschland, meaning “frame construction in Germany” (Lightweight displayed it in a glass cabinet at Eurobike, hence the strange quality of these pics).
Rather than a monococque frame coming out of a mould, the Ride is made using a tube-to-tube method. It will be available in stock sizes but this construction technique means Lightweight will be able to offer custom frames too.
The Ride takes disc brakes and tyres of up to 28mm wide.
Lightweight claims a combined frame and fork weight of less than 1,190g.
The head tube features an integrated front light and the seatstays feature rear lights.
This is a prototype, the final versions should be available in about a year. There's no word on pricing yet.
Mat has worked for loads of bike magazines over 20+ years, and been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. He's been road.cc technical editor for eight 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.