Last year saw the semi-legalisation of disc brakes in the pro peloton and that, in turn, meant plenty of big name brands launched disc-equipped bikes.
Focus were among those who threw their hat in the ring and, as sponsors of French team Ag2r-La Mondiale, you’ll likely see this disc-equipped version of their top-line road bike in the pro peloton some time this season.
But to simply call the Focus Izalco Max a disc brake road bike is doing a disservice since, tipping the scales bang on the UCI weight limit of 6.8kg, it’s the lightest disc brake road bike in the world. Lighter, in fact, than many non-disc-brake bikes.
To simply call the Focus Izalco Max a disc brake road bike is doing a disservice since, tipping the scales bang on the UCI weight limit of 6.8kg, it’s the lightest disc brake road bike in the world.
The frame itself weighs in at 790g and the fork at 325g, meaning this could form the basis of a very light build indeed – and is just about as future-proof as it gets in the road bike market right now.
Apart from being super light, there’s much more to the Izalco too as it manages to retain the stiffness of the rim brake model ridden in the pro peloton. It also has identical stack and reach figures, using Focus’ ‘stable stiffness per size’ concept whereby they vary carbon layups across the size range to make sure bigger frames perform just as well as the smaller ones.
This bike is, to all intents and purposes, the same machine on which Romain Bardet and Alexis Vuillermoz won Tour de France stages last year, with a few marginal adjustments to cater for the demands of disc brakes.
There’s been marginal reinforcement of the fork and chainstays in order to cope with the asymmetric torque of discs, and thru axles have been added to help with that as well. Those changes are hardly noticable, though, as the fork has been strengthened internally and the chainstays are marginally longer than before.