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Is Mathieu van der Poel riding a secret new Canyon Aeroad?

Pictures published and hastily deleted suggest Canyon is developing a new version of its aero road bike

It looks as if Canyon is developing a new version of its Aeroad aero road bike and that the prototype is currently being ridden by Mathieu van der Poel, judging by pictures published on social media and spotted by Dutch website WielerFlits

One photograph was published on Gianni Vermeersch’s Instagram page before being deleted while the other is taken from a video.

WielerFlits was swift to notice the new bike and approached Canyon about it. The German company confirmed that the frame is a prototype and “something we are working on”, but didn’t give any further information.

This could be an entirely new model although it looks very similar to the existing Aeroad so it’s likely to be an update that is being considered. Mathieu van der Poel is currently on a training camp so now is the ideal time to try out new products and to offer feedback.

> The all new Canyon Ultimate is here and it could save you 10 watts  

The pics are far from perfect for bike identification but you can see that there’s the addition of material inside the junction of the seat tube and the top tube on the prototype bike. It’s more of a distinct angle on the existing Aeroad. We can’t tell you whether this is for reasons of aerodynamics or if it’s simply to accommodate a new seat post clamp system.

Also, the head tube looks less deep on the prototype, with a distinct flat area extending into the down tube.

2023 Canyon Aeroad Mathieu van der Poel

WielerFlits also thinks that the seat stays attachment point on the seat tube has been slightly lowered, although we’re not seeing that.

Canyon officially revealed the latest version of the Aeroad road bike in October 2020. A new version three years later – sometime in late 2023 – wouldn’t be unusual. It would be strange to launch a new model in a shorter period than that, though.

The current Aeroad had a rocky start in life, owners complaining within a couple of months of excessive wear at the point where the seat post met the seat tube. The suggestion was that taller and heavier riders with a greater proportion of the seat post exposed were most likely to be affected. Perhaps that’s the reason for the change to the prototype model in that area.

2022 Canyon Aeroad CFR Disc eTapMovistar

For comparison, here's a 2022 Canyon Aeroad CFR Disc

Then in early March 2021, the aero cockpit snapped under Mathieu van der Poel while racing Le Samyn. Canyon issued a ‘stop ride’ notice to owners of the 2021 Aeroad models that featured the CP15 and CP18 cockpits.

Although the issue was with the handlebar rather than the frame, it took months to resolve. The Aeroad has been ridden to countless high-profile victories since then but you couldn’t blame Canyon if it’s eager to prioritise a new version to draw a line under that whole episode. It has recently introduced a new version of its other top-level race bike, the lightweight Ultimate, so it could now be focusing its efforts on the Aeroad. 

> Check out our review of the Canyon Ultimate CF SLX 8 Di2 2023

Who knows? We have no idea how far along the line this prototype model is. It’s certainly not on the UCI’s List of Approved Models of Frames and Forks yet although that doesn’t mean a lot. Brands can submit designs and have them approved but request that the info isn’t published until the official launch. Judging by the timescales, though, and the fact that current Aeroads aren’t being discounted on Canyon’s website, we’d say we’re months away from any launch.

As mentioned up top, we owe credit to WeilerFlits for spotting these pictures.

Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. 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 winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now over 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.

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