The winter frost is beginning to thaw, and bike brands are taking notice. Loads of new gear is appearing in seemingly all sectors, primed to tackle everything from paved roads to rocky mountains.
Need more proof that bikes are on the brain? No less prestigious an automaker than Porsche is now making e-bikes.
To help you sort everything out, we're spotlighting a dozen of the most progressive and interesting recent bike and bike-related launches. Check them out below and get stoked to put in more miles than ever this spring.
Alchemy Arktos 29 170F/150R
Alchemy just released a bunch of new Arktos mountain bikes, and this particular carbon-framed beast is a downhiller's delight. Those numbers in the name indicate wheel size (29 inches), plus millimeters of front and rear travel. Translation: nearly 7 inches up front and six in back, courtesy of Sine Suspension, a unique dual short-link system that regulates the give of the shocks to optimize responsiveness on everything from small bumps to big hits.
Salsa Timberjack 27.5+ Single Speed
On the opposite end of the MTB spectrum is this aluminum-framed, wallet-friendly edition of the trail-crushing hardtail Timberjack, stripped down to an old-school single speed. The bike features 27.5-inch wheels, just over five inches of front suspension and several mounting points for extra supplies, plus Alternator 2.0 dropouts that allow you to add gears later if you so desire.
Porsche eBike Cross
Based on the brand's proverbial track record, you would think its $10,700 eBike Sport would be the more compelling of its two new e-bike releases. But we're actually more excited about the dirt-hungry eBike Cross, which boasts a full-suspension carbon frame, Crankbrothers dropper post and wheels and a Shimano drive unit offering pedal assistance up to 15.5 miles per hour.
Pivot’s new, carbon-framed e-bike is so progressive it’s hard to encapsulate, but a couple of features really stand out. First, the lightweight Fazua Drive System decouples from the bottom bracket when not engaged, enabling you to ride it very much like a regular bike when you like. Second, you can integrate your own fitness data and customize the wireless shifting and power output, getting just what you need out of three levels of pedal assistance.
Cannondale CAAD Optimo 1
We are hard-pressed to outdo Cannonale's own description here: “a true performance road bike with race-winning DNA – delivering champagne experience for lemonade money.” Streamlined geometry, an alloy frame with a full-carbon fork and Shimano 105 11-speed shifting bode well for follow-through on that promise.
Quintana Roo SRSIX
This wind tunnel-tested aero bike truly feels the need for speed. Quintana Roo employed the lightest, stiffest carbon available to shave more than 5 ounces off the SRfive frame, resulting in a frame weighing less than 2.2 pounds. A slightly lighter fork, invisible cable routing and fit capability round out a ride that climbs, corners and accelerates with equal alacrity.
POC Kortal and Devour
The best snow helmets and goggles are those designed to work together. Now POC is bringing that logic to mountain biking via two lightweight, max ventilated Kortal helmets (one with MIPS, one without) that pair perfectly with the goggle-sized Devour sunglasses. The full-coverage specs come with a spare clear lens, providing optimal optics in a range of conditions.
Price: $200+ (Kortal), $250 (Devour)
EVOC Trail Pro 16
There’s much more to this cool-looking mountain bike pack than meets the eye. Highlights include a Liteshield Plus back protector, a hydration compartment that can accommodate up to 3 liters and a tool compartment that can be opened and closed with one hand, even while you are wearing gloves.
Five Ten Freerider Pro Primeblue
Did you know Five Ten makes mountain bike shoes? Dang good ones, too. This update to the top of the line features a Stealth Dotty rubber outsole for maximum grip, a tough toe box and an earth-friendly touch: the upper is constructed with Primeblue, a recycled material made in part with Parley Ocean Plastic.
Chrome Mini Kadet
If you love the Kadet but are looking for something more streamlined, you are in luck. Chrome's new Mini Kadet boasts many of the same features — water-resistant main compartment, padded rear u-lock holster, integrated bottle opener — but it's roughly half the size, with 5 liters of storage space rather than 9.
This cool coffee table book tracks that time Hubert D'Autremont, Adam Sklar and Jonny Pucci got together last winter to build some bicycle frames at Hubert’s shop in Tucson, Arizona. If you wanna soak up the spirit of that process, plus some sweeping desert vistas and evocative inspiration, snag it and support a small publisher today.
Nothing to see here, just the world’s first 3D printed hard-shell shoe built specifically for your individual foot. Developed in collaboration with Olympic cyclist, coach and fitter Colby Pearce, Lore’s upcoming launch promises to max out the connection between rider and bike for the most powerful and efficient pedaling possible. Stay tuned for additional details next month.