London Bike Show preview: seven must-see bikes - Road Cycling UK

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London Bike Show preview: seven must-see bikes

From endurances bikes to aero bikes, and disc-equipped race bikes to adventure bikes

Some of the biggest brands in cycling will head to the London Bike Show on February 11-14 – giving you the chance to check out the latest and greatest bikes for 2016. 

Among the brands set to setup shop at the Excel Centre include Cervelo, who have the new C5 endurance bike on display, and Specialized, whose hyper-aero S-Works Venge ViAS has to be seen to be believed.

And RoadCyclingUK readers can get ten per cent off tickets using the discount code RCUK on the London Bike Show website.

Tempted? Here are seven must-see machines at the London Bike Show to whet your appetite, covering everything from endurance bikes to aero bikes, and disc-equipped race bikes to adventure bikes.

Cervelo C5

Cervelo kept everyone in the dark while developing the C5, before the Canadian firm’s all-new disc-equipped endurance bike was launched in December – making the London Bike Show one of its first public appearances.

There are two frames in the C-series, the more affordable C3 and the upscale C5, and the flagship frame comes in at a claimed 850g – one of the lightest disc-ready endurance frames around.

As you’d expect for an endurance bike in 2016, the frame has clearance for 28mm tyres, and also has hidden mudguard mounts, while the geometry is more relaxed than S and R-series race bikes to deliver confident, stable handling.

Specialized S-Works Venge ViAS

The Specialized S-Works Venge ViAS is one of the standout bikes of 2016. The Venge ViAS is the latest incarnation of Specialized’s aero race bike and it’s designed with one thing in mind – speed.

It’s a radical-looking machine, selected for the RCUK 100 – our pick of the 100 hottest products in road cycling for 2016. The frame is dripping from head to toe in aero features, from the aggressive tube profiles, which Specialized arrived at after apparently more than 1,000 hours of testing and prototyping, to the unique Aerofly cockpit. The £9,000 S-Works Venge ViAS Di2 bikes comes with a S-Works Power crankset, which integrates a Quarq power meter, as well as Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 and Roval CLX 64 deep-section wheels.

The Venge ViAS was launched ahead of the 2015 Tour de France, where it was ridden by both Mark Cavendish and Peter Sagan. While Cavendish will ride a Cervelo in 2016, having switched to Team Dimension Data, you’ll see Sagan, now the world champion, on the Venge ViAS.

Boardman Air 9.9

Boardman Bikes have been busy for 2016, launching new bikes both in the flagship Elite collection and the more affordable Performance range.

One of the standout bikes in the Elite line-up is the Air 9.9. Chris Boardman made his name riding against the clock and the Air is Boardman’s aerodynamic road bike – notice how the front brake is integrated into the fork, while the rear brake is hidden behind the bottom bracket. The Air takes its design cues from Boardman’s TTE time trial bike and the frame is made from the firm’s top grade of C10 carbon fibre.

What’s particularly interesting about the 9.9 build of the Air, however, is that it’s one of the first bikes we’ve seen with SRAM’s wireless electronic Red eTap groupset, along with the Raleigh Militis Team eTap.

Cube Agree C:62 Race Disc

Cube have overhauled the Agree for 2016, combining three of the latest trends in road bike design: aerodynamics, comfort and disc brakes. It’s why the flagship bike in the range, the Cube Agree C:62 SLT Disc, made it into the RCUK 100.

The Agree C:62 Race Disc shares the same frame as that top-of-the-range model, made from Cube’s C:62 blend of carbon fibre (a mix of 62 per cent carbon and 38 per cent resin), and with features which include Cube’s X-12 ‘quick release’ thru-axles and aero-influenced tube profiles.

However, the Race Disc swaps the Shimano Dura-Ace groupset of the SLT Disc for Shimano Ultegra, and the Fulcrum Racing Quattro Carbon Disc wheels for DT Swiss Spline R32 Disc hoops, while dropping the price from £3,299 to £2,199.

Focus Izalco Max Disc

Another entry into the RCUK 100, the Focus Izalco Max Disc comes with the claim of being the lightest disc-equipped road bike on the market. The flagship SRAM Red-equipped model certainly isn’t troubling the scales at 6.8kg – bang on the UCI’s weight limit for racing.

That low weight starts with the frame, which comes in at 790g and, when paired with the 325g fork, makes for a very light chassis indeed. It’s effectively the same frame on which Romain Bardet and Alexis Vuillermoz won Tour de France stages in 2015, but with the fork and chainstays beefed up a little to cope with the extra demands of discs, and thru-axles added at the front and rear.

Those thru-axles use Focus’ Rapid Axle Technology, designed to make the wheels almost as easy to remove as with a traditional quick release skewer.

Shand Stoater

Now for something different and venturing away from the world of race bikes, the Stoater is Shand’s take on the go-anywhere adventure bike. If you’re not familiar with Shand, they’re a small independent brand from Scotland, making handbuilt production bikes and one-off bespoke machines.

The Stoater is made from a blend of TIG-welded Columbus and Dedacciai tubing, and is designed as a machine as comfortable on the road as it is on gravel, towpaths and singletrack. Mudguard and rack mounts add even more versatility, while there’s stacks of clearance for tyres up to 50mm.

Shand offer the Stoater in a Shimano 105 build with Shimano RS-785 hydraulic disc brakes for £1,950, in any one of 28 colours.

Engineered Bikes Gezel

The Gezel comes from Engineered Bikes, a Bristol-brand brand, and is a made-to-order steel frame handbuilt in Italy. It sits somewhere roughly between a four-seasons road bike, an endurance bike and an adventure bike.

Engineered Bikes say the idea for the Gezel came from ‘serious racers looking for a bike that could be ridden throughout the year but offering the fit and character of their race bikes’. Engineered Bikes offer a number of options on the Gezel, including Columbus XCR stainless steel or Dedacciai Zero XL tubing, a range of bottom brackets, and either quick release or thru-axle dropouts, as well as a custom geometry, if you want it.

Otherwise, the frame has plenty of tyre clearance, with room for 28mm tyres with mudguards and 32mm without, while Engineered Bikes have opted for external cable routing, apparently to avoid moisture ingress in the tubing. There’s also a custom paint option.

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