Hide the credit card, Italian bicycle brand Wilier has given its latest Cento10Air race bike a historic makeover, reimagining it with the unique ramato mirrored copper finish it first used on a steel racing bicycle in the 1940s.
This isn’t the first time Wilier has rolled out a special edition bike. Back in 2016, to celebrate its 110th anniversary, it produced the Superleggera Ramato, a traditional steel racing bicycle with a glorious mirrored copper finish that it first used during the 1940s and came to be a signature colour.
The polished copper effect is produced by mirror-polishing and then fully chroming the steel frame, followed by painting with a special translucent lacquer. They obviously can’t do this with a carbon frame, but it looks like they have managed to faithfully replicate the finish using paint.
Wilier has timed the launch of this special edition bike with the 100th edition of the Giro d’Italian, and Italian sprinter Filippo Pozzato has been racing it, the more eagle-eyed readers might have already spotted this very unique looking bike. He apparently has also been using the Superleggera Ramato steel road bike for getting around on between the team bus and sign on and coffee shops before stages.
The Cento10Air was launched last year and represents the company’s fastest and lightest road bike to date. It’s an aero frame developed using NACA airfoil shapes, with direct mount brakes, a new integrated handlebar, fully internal cables and widely spaced fork blades.The result of the development leads Wilier to claim an 8% aerodynamic improvement over the previous bike.
In an effort to reduce drag, the gear cables are routed through the steerer tube from the handlebar into the frame, with a clever bit of packaging around the steerer tube, which has flattened sides to provide enough space for the cables. A special headset top cap directs the cables into the head tube, and the outer cable housing terminates a short way down the down tube, where Wilier has integrated a front
The adoption of Shimano’s Direct Mount brake caliper means the bike accepts up to 28mm tyres, a bonus if you value comfort as well as aero performance. The use of direct mount brakes has also allowed Wilier to move the seat stays and fork blades away from the wheel rims, the space created is claimed to reduce drag because the air being squeezed between the frame and rim is less turbulent.
But in this ramato finish, it looks divine. What do you think?
David worked on the road.cc tech team from 2012-2020. 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, and you can now find him over on his own YouTube channel David Arthur - Just Ride Bikes.