A new year means a new UCI WorldTour season, with the Tour Down Under having kicked off proceedings in Adelaide this month. And the start of a new season means a first opportunity to see newly-refreshed teams, complete with new sponsors, bikes and riders all getting their first taste of top-level competitive action in 2018.

So, what will the teams be riding this year? Well there's a generous smattering of new bikes launched at the end of last season, including the third generation BMC TeamMachine SLR01, the aero-optimised Specialized S-Works SL6, the latest Merida Reacto and the revamped Lapierre Aircode.

What will your favourite riders be riding on in 2018? (Pic: Sirotti)

No doubt the answer will also evolve this year as new models make their way under the pro riders at flagship events like the Paris-Roubaix and Tour de France. And, of course, there’s the issue of disc brakes.

With the likes of Trek-Segafredo openly stating they’ll be adopting disc brake Emondas for 2018, and given brake and frame technology has advanced to the point it can now easily trouble the 6.8kg UCI weight limit, it can hardly be a surprise that this will once again form a significant bike tech story in 2018.

- UCI WorldTour 2018: which team has the best kit? -

Remember, Marcel Kittel won four stages of the Tour de France last year on a disc brake Specialized Venge ViAS, so really, the cat is well and truly out of the bag.

For now, however, let's concentrate on what we know at the start of 2018. Who's riding what this season?Read on.

Ag2r-La Mondiale

France’s top WorldTour team will continue its tie-up with luxury bike brand Factor in 2018, and will hope Romain Bardet can target Grand Tour success aboard the O2 lightweight bike. We anticipate use of the rim brake version for the season, although the team does have approval to choose the O2 Disc, should it wish.

The Ag2r-La Mondiale team is partnering with Factor again in 2018, meaning Romain Bardet will target Grand Tour success on the O2 (Pic: Ag2r-La Mondiale)

Meanwhile, the Factor One (with its twin-vane aero downtube) is the aero frame of choice, while this season's time trials will be completed on the Slick.

The Bikes are specced with Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 groupsets, while French wheel manufacturers Mavic supply the rolling stock in one of only two WorldTour team tie-ups. Riders will be able to keep a close eye on their efforts with SRM power meters.

Bike brand: Factor

Bike models: ONE (aero), O2 (lightweight), Slick (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Mavic

Power meter: SRM

Astana

Astana switched to Argon 18 bikes last year, having dropped American big boys Specialized, and will have the Nitrogen Pro, Gallium Pro and Krypton bikes at their disposal throughout 2018.

While the Krypton is the brand’s disc-equipped endurance bike, Astana may also wish to opt for a disc brake Gallium at some point too.

Astana, Argon 18, WorldTour bikes 2018

The team will continue to ride Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 groupsets as we start the season, although the team retains a deal with FSA (evident in the Italian firm's chainset) that may still result in the wireless WE groupset getting a few rides in 2018.

For now though, it’s as you were on the drivetrain, while Corima comes in as wheelset supplier and Power2Max will record wattage for the team.

Bike brand: Argon 18

Bike models: Nitrogen Pro (aero), Gallium Pro (lightweight), Krypton (endurance), E-118 (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Corima

Power meter: Power2Max

Bahrain-Merida

Heading into its second season, the Bahrain-Merida squad will once again use the Reacto and Scultura in 2018, while the UCI’s stamp of approval has been awarded to the disc versions of both road bikes. There's also the Wrap TT bike for the team, too.

Bahrain-Merida, Merida Reacto, 2018, pic - BettiniPhoto/Bahrain-Merida

Whether we see Vincenzo Nibali (a renowned conservative when it comes to bike tech – he was a relatively late adopter of electronic shifting a couple of years ago) on a Scultura Disc or not is up for debate, but Shimano is retained as groupset suppliers, as are Fulcrum for the wheels, while SRM records the power.

Bike brand: Merida

Bike models: Reacto (aero), Scultura (lightweight), Warp (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Fulcrum

Power meter: SRM

BMC Racing

BMC launched the updated TeamMachine SLR01 last year, so it's no surprise to see the Swiss bike brand's team on the latest machine. While it looks similar to the old model, the 2018 TeamMachine is said to be stiffer and more comfortable - plus it's available with disc brakes.

While the disc frame is yet to appear on the UCI's approved list (at the time of writing), given the fact BMC has used it in team publicity shots, there's a good chance that will change soon.

BMC TeamMachine, Richie Porte, 2018

The GranFondo may be called into action on the cobbles, with Greg Van Avermaet using the bike to win the 2017 Paris-Roubaix, while there's also the incredibly successful TimeMachine for time trials. BMC has a comprehensive relationship with Shimano, with the brand also supplying the rolling stock.

Previously, we’ve seen SRM power meters on BMC’s bikes, although that is now set to be replaced with Shimano’s own R9100-P power crankset. Additionally, it’s worth noting the tyre tie-up with Vittoria, a company known to favour tan side walls. We’re already salivating.

Bike brand: BMC

Bike models: TeamMachine (aero/lightweight), GranFondo (endurance), TimeMachine (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Shimano

Power meter: Shimano

Bora-hansgrohe

Bora-hansgrohe is one of two WorldTour teams to be supplied by American big boys Specialized – thanks in no small part to the brand’s relationship with Bora’s star rider, world champion Peter Sagan. The team will have the full arsenal of bikes at its disposal, including the Venge, Tarmac, Roubaix and Shiv, for anything the WorldTour can throw at the riders.

Bora-hansgrohe, Specialized, Peter Sagan, world champion, pic - Bora-hansgrohe

As one of the most prominent supporters of disc brakes, we think it’s likely we’ll see disc versions of the aero Venge and lightweight Tarmac at some point in 2018, while the Roubaix is, of course, disc-only.

Bora-hansgrohe also has a tie up with Specialized’s sister company Roval for the wheels, and will build the bikes with Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 groupsets. Prototype Specialized-badged power meters were also spotted on Peter Sagan’s bike at the Tour Down Under.

Bike brand: Specialized

Bike models: Venge (aero), Tarmac (lightweight), Roubaix (endurance), Shiv (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Roval

Power meter: Specialized [prototype]

EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale

For a while in 2017, we weren’t sure we’d see the Slipstream Sports team, previously Cannondale-Drapac and now EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale, in existence in 2018. Thankfully it is, and it means we’ll continue to see Cannondale bikes at the highest level, with the SuperSix all-rounder, Synapse endurance and SuperSlice time trial bikes.

EF-Drapac, Cannondale

The new Synapse is all-disc, while disc brake SuperSix bikes are widely used in training and are registered as UCI-legal frames – what price on seeing those in races this season?

The team uses Shimano drivetrains with FSA chainsets, with Vision taking over from Mavic in the wheelset department. Garmin’s long-running relationship with the team continues, so while SRM power meters were on show at the Tour Down Under, Vector pedals are also an option.

Bike brand: Cannondale

Bike models: SuperSix (aero/lightweight), Synapse (endurance), SuperSlice (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano/FSA

Wheels: Vision

Power meter: SRM/Garmin

FDJ

A new co-title sponsor for FDJ is the only change for the French team in 2018, with Groupama set to join the French team in the spring. The bikes, however, remain precisely the same thanks to the close relationship with Lapierre.

French marque Lapierre's long-standing tie-up with FDJ continues (Pic: Lapierre)

That means the Aircode, redesigned last summer and reviewed on RCUK with Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 just recently, will be seen under Arnaud Demare in the sprints, the new Pulsium will likely be called into action in the cobbled classics, and the Xelius will come to the fore in the mountains, with the striking Aerostorm brought out for the time trials. Disc brake versions of the Xelius and Pulsium also exist.

A comprehensive supply deal with Shimano means the Japanese brand supplies the groupset and wheels, while we expect to see the R9100-P power meters appear on some bikes throughout the season alongside SRMs.

Bike brand: Lapierre

Bike models: Aircode (aero), Xelius (lightweight), Pulsium (endurance), Aerostorm (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Shimano

Power meter: Shimano/SRM

Lotto-Soudal

Belgian powerhouses Lotto-Soudal retain a close relationship with fellow Belgians Ridley, so it’s the Noah for the stages where aero performance is key, Helium for the climbs, Fenix in the cobbled Classics and the Dean for the time trials.

The teams goes Italian with Campagnolo Super Record EPS for the groupset, along with the Italian marque’s distinctive wheels.

Lotto-Soudal, Ridley, training, pic - Lotto-Soudal

SRM will supply the power data – a good job given Andre Greipel’s proclivity for churning out some of the highest wattage in the pro peloton.

Bike brand: Ridley

Bike models: Noah (aero), Helium (lightweight), Fenix (endurance), Dean (time trial)

Groupset: Campagnolo

Wheels: Campagnolo

Power meter: SRM

Mitchelton-Scott

Aussie team Mitchelton-Scott will once again rely upon co-title sponsor Scott for its bikes, with the Foil, Addict and Plasma (for the TTs). The brand new Foil Disc is a fresh addition to accompany the Addict Disc, so it’s likely we’ll see those under riders at some point in 2018.

Scott Addict, Mitchelton-Scott, pic - Scott

The team is sponsored comprehensively by Shimano, who provide the wheelsets and groupsets, while also supplying its integrated power unit, the R9100-P chainset. Incidentally, 4iiii will supply solely the women’s team.

Bike brand: Scott

Bike models: Foil (aero), Addict (lightweight), Plasma (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Shimano

Power meter: Shimano

Movistar

Team Movistar’s colours might have changed from the navy blue and green of 2017 to the blue fade of 2018, but despite the fresh lick of paint the bikes remain familiar. German direct-to-consumer specialists Canyon will provide the Aeroad, Ultimate and Speedmax for the season once again.

Movistar, Canyon, 2018

There are disc-ready versions of the Aeroad and Ultimate, too, while the team will spec the bikes with Campagnolo drivetrains, brakes, and wheels. Power2Max continues as Movistar's power meter sponsors.

Bike brand: Canyon

Bike models: Aeroad (aero), Ultimate (lightweight), Speedmax (time trial)

Groupset: Campagnolo

Wheels: Campagnolo

Power meter: Power2Max

QuickStep Floors

Perennial winners QuickStep Floors are to continue using Specialized bikes in 2018 and, like Bora-hansgrohe, will have the Venge, Tarmac, Roubaix and Shiv bikes at their disposal.

Last year Tom Boonen took the first major pro win on disc brakes, while Marcel Kittel won four stages of the Tour de France in QuickStep colours on a disc-equipped Venge ViAS.

QuickStep Floors, Specialized, pic - Sirotti

Specialized's sister brand, Roval, supplies the hoops, meanwhile, with Specialized-badged prototype power meters spotted at the Tour Down Under. Shimano will provide Dura-Ace Di2 groupsets once again for the 2018 campaign.

Bike brand: Specialized

Bike models: Venge (aero), Tarmac (lightweight), Roubaix (endurance), Shiv (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Roval

Power meter: Specialized [prototypes]

Team Dimension Data

Team Dimension Data continues with Cervelo for the 2018 season. The aero S5 is the bike of choice for sprint king Mark Cavendish, while the lightweight R5 is on hand for the South African team's climbers and there's a disc version, too. The P5 is reserved for time trials.

Pro bike: Bernhard Eisel's Cervelo S5 (Pic: Scott Mitchell/Dimension Data)

Entering 2018, DiData is sticking with Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 groupsets, furnished with Rotor cranksets and the Spanish firm's 2InPower power meter. Arguably, the highlight of the builds is the use of Enve wheelsets, which have developed something of a folkloric reputation among riders.

Bike brand: Cervelo

Bike models: S5 (aero), R5 (lightweight), P5 (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Enve

Power meter: Rotor

Team Katusha-Alpecin

Katusha-Alpecin is Canyon’s second WorldTour team - however, while Movistar riders choose between the Aeroad and Ultimate, it's all about aero for Katusha.

That's handy for Brit Alex Dowsett, who keeps the Aeroad for road stages and Speedmax for efforts against the clock going into his first season with the team, having switched from Movistar.

Canyon Aeroad, Katusha Alpecin, 2018, pic - Katusha-Alpecin

He will have to get used to new kit elsewhere, though. Katusha-Alpecin is the only WorldTour team sponsored by American brand SRAM, so Red eTap wireless groupsets will be the order of the day. Sister brands Zipp and Quarq supply the wheels and power meters respectively. That should at least keep the admin tidy.

Bike brand: Canyon

Bike models: Aeroad (aero), Speedmax (time trial)

Groupset: SRAM

Wheels: Zipp

Power meter: Quarq

Team LottoNL-Jumbo

It wouldn’t be the WorldTour without the presence of the oldest bike brand in the world, Bianchi, would it? Once again, the legendary Italian marque will supply LottoNL-Jumbo in 2018, with Oltre XR4 aero bikes, the Specialissima lightweight machine and Infinito endurance bikes for road races, and the Aquila for TTs.

Robert Gesink, Bianchi Oltre XR4, pic - Sirotti

There are no disc-brake models registered with the UCI as yet, so Shimano will be supplying its Dura-Ace R9150 Di2 groupsets for the bikes, along with its own wheels (supplemented by PRO in the time trials). LottoNL-Jumbo will have sole use of Pioneer power meters, too.

Bike brand: Bianchi

Bike models: Oltre XR4 (aero), Specialissima (lightweight), Infinito (endurance), Aquila (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Shimano

Power meter: Pioneer

Team Sky

Team Sky’s ever-present tie-up with Pinarello continues into 2018, with the Grand Tour-winning Dogma F10 (and F10 X-Light) all-rounder remaining the go-to steed for the British team but with one difference - a fresh lick of paint to match the British squad's new kit.

The K10 is the Italian manufacturer’s endurance bike (keep your eye out for the possible emergence of the new K10-S with electronic suspension unit during the Classics season), while the Bolide will handle the time trials.

Team Sky's Pinarello Dogma F10 race bike for 2018 (Pic: Pinarello)

Team Sky is infamously fastidious about its partner deals, and remains committed to Shimano (and PRO) for its groupsets, wheels and finishing kit in 2018. Stages is the team’s longtime power meter supplier and remains so this season.

Bike brand: Pinarello

Bike models: Dogma F10 (aero/lightweight), Dogma K10 (endurance), Bolide (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Shimano

Power meter: Stages

Team Sunweb

It will come as no great surprise to learn Team Sunweb will continue to ride Giant bikes in 2018. The team used to be title-sponsored by the Taiwanese bike brand, after all.

This means Tom Dumoulin and co will have a full quota of bikes to select from the Giant stable, including the Propel, TCR, Defy and Trinity, with disc versions of the Propel and TCR in the mix, too.

Team Sunweb, Giant TCR

Giant also manufactures its own range of wheelsets and - new for 2018 - will supply the team with those, while Shimano stays on as groupset supplier. Thanks to that supply deal, we’ll also see the emergence of the R9100-P power meter on the bikes to replace Pioneer.

Bike brand: Giant

Bike models: Propel (aero), TCR (lightweight), Defy (endurance), Trinity (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Giant

Power meter: Shimano

Trek-Segafredo

Trek-Segafredo will, of course, use Trek bikes in 2018. The team has also taken the bold step of announcing the Emonda Disc will be the bike of choice for most riders in most races throughout 2018.

With the Domane also a strong disc-brake candidate, that leaves a Madone-shaped hole in the disc range. We’re wondering if we might see a Madone Disc debut when the Tour de France swings around this year.

Femiyuki Beppu, Trek-Segafredo, 2018, pic - Sirotti

Like Specialized, Trek has a sister component company in Bontrager, so we’ll see those wheelsets on the bikes once again this season. Shimano supplies the groupsets, and while we spied bikes specced with SRM power meters during the pre-Tour Down Under People’s Classic, the team has also chosen to ride Shimano’s R9100-P power meter through the season, too. Expect to see that change soon.

Bike brand: Trek

Bike models: Madone (aero), Emonda (lightweight), Domane (endurance), Speed Concept (time trial)

Groupset: Shimano

Wheels: Bontrager

Power meter: Shimano

UAE Team Emirates

Finally, UAE Team Emirates retains its deal with historic Italian brand Colnago, with the likes of Fabio Aru and new signing Dan Martin to choose between the C60 and V2-R bikes, and sprinter Alexander Kristoff likely to ride the aero Concept. The K1 will be the time trial bike heading into 2018. Disc brake versions of the V2-R are registered for racing with the UCI, so we may also see this at some point through the year.

Colnago, UAE Team Emirates

The team sticks with the Italian theme with a sponsorship deal with Campagnolo, which will see the squad's bikes shod not only with Super Record EPS groupsets, but Bora wheelsets as well. Power metrics will be recorded by Power2Max.

Bike brand: Colnago

Bike models: Concept (aero), C60 and V2-R (lightweight), K.One (time trial)

Groupset: Campagnolo

Wheels: Campagnolo

Power meter: Power2Max