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Speeco launches revamped version of its aero-optimised handlebar that is UCI-legal (for now)

The Dutch innovator claims the arguably less radical Aero Breakaway Bar (ABB) 2.0 complies with UCI regulations... but how long for?

The Dutch high-end bike component specialist Speeco shocked the cycling word in 2020 with the release of its radically-shaped Aero Breakaway Bar (ABB), a design that was perhaps inevitably outlawed by the UCI rather promptly. Not to be deterred, Speeco is back with an updated version 2.0, that it claims now conforms with the current UCI rules... but will cycling's notoriously picky governing body find fault with the new version too, yours for around £850? 

2024 Speeco ABB 2.0 handlebar 2
The ABB 2.0 has gained some curves to comply with current UCI regulations

Cycling brands continuously strive for the lightest, most aerodynamic solutions in their equipment, and handlebars are no exception, given their significant impact on a rider’s frontal area. 

Recent years have seen a surge in radical designs on both the road and track, including Speeco’s TR-E (Track Endurance) handlebar with hoods built in purely for aerodynamics, and Lambda Tuning’s Cross-Wing bar that measures less than 15cm wide at the hoods. 

> Has aero gone too far?

Speeco’s first-generation ABB caused a stir with its exaggerated forward extensions, allowing riders to adopt a time-trial arm position on a road bike. The ABB 2.0 features a different design, emphasising improved aerodynamics with its super-long airfoil while also providing benefits for resting the forearms. Additionally, Speeco mentions that these bars are fully customisable so they “can be configured to a breakaway style rider with a long reach”, resembling its predecessor. 

2021 Speeco ABB side
The original Speeco ABB, that the UCI spent little time in banning from competition

The reach, drop, width, flare and height are all customisable to suit the individual preferences of different types of riders. Unlike the previous generation, the ABB 2.0 is designed as a separate handlebar, which is said to fit most stems and most integrated cable setups. 

The weight of the bar is claimed to start from 320g, and is made from AlSi10Mg rather than carbon fibre. AlSi10Mg? Us neither... but according to its creator EOS, this material is "a widely used alloy that combines light weight and good mechanical properties", and is used mostly in the medical, aerospace and motor industries.

Speeco says it has opted for AlSi10Mg to “stimulate the strength and behaviour for all designs we make, without having them above their needed weight”. 

2024 Speeco ABB 2.0 handlebar flare

Is the UCI happy with Speeco’s new design?

Every season we see changes to the UCI rules, but the brand says that this new design conforms to the current UCI regulations. It’s certainly less radical than its predecessor. 

Speeco hasn’t stated any dimensions of the ABB 2.0 handlebar, likely due to its fully customisable design, but it is understood that it can be tailored to be UCI compliant.

2024 Speeco ABB 2.0 prototype

According to Article 1.3.012 of the UCI’s regulations: “A bicycle shall not measure more than 185cm in length and 50cm in width overall.”

This maximum width of 50cm for the bicycle is said to directly relate to the maximum authorised width of handlebars. The minimum overall width is limited to 35cm. 

The UCI also states that a road bike handlebar and stem must be able to fit within a template provided of five rectangular boxes and goes on to say that “manufacturers are free to adjust the positioning of the boxes provided that the equipment geometry respects all articles of the technical regulations and the equipment is entirely contained within the boxes and does not present any apparent dangers”. 

2024 UCI handlebar regulations

In addition to meeting these measurement requirements, the UCI also include a regulation regarding the practical use of the bars. 

Article 1.3.009 says: “The bicycle should have handlebars which allow it to be ridden and manoeuvred in any circumstances and in complete safety”. This requirement was a point of contention for many people regarding the previous generation.  

Each set is custom-made to your own specifications, so getting a ABB 2.0 bar setup isn’t going to come cheap. They cost €1000 (∼£850) and are available to order now.

For more information you can head over to Speeco’s website.

Do you think the UCI will ban the version 2.0 too? Let us know what you think in the comments section below…

Emily is our track and road racing specialist, having represented Great Britain at the World and European Track Championships. With a National Title up her sleeve, Emily has just completed her Master’s in Sports Psychology at Loughborough University where she raced for Elite Development Team, Loughborough Lightning.

Emily is our go-to for all things training and when not riding or racing bikes, you can find her online shopping or booking flights…the rest of the office is now considering painting their nails to see if that’s the secret to going fast…

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