With a brand-new bike manufacturer on the scene, Windover, and massive upgrades to the Cube Stereo range, it's been a busy week for tech news. Trek also updated the Rail e-MTB with smarter tech and there's a new women-specific hardtail from Liv. Fox has finally caved and added footwear to its apparel collection too, while Rab launched its cycling clothing.
Trek Rail gets smarter
2023 Trek Rail 9.8 GX AXS C Hero.png, by Trek
The Rail that sits in Trek's e-MTB range has been upgraded with a new Bosch Smart System and Removable Integrated Battery (RIB). The more premium models get reworked frame designs. Models equipped with this Bosch Smart System will provide riders with 85Nm of power to charge up those hills at full pelt, and the power is adjusted automatically based on the terrain and when Tour+ and e-MTB modes are selected to make the riding feel natural.
Trek's Rail 9.8 and 9.9 models, will feature Bosch's System Controller on the top tube and are able to pair with a small Mini Remote to easily change modes while riding, whereas the other models have the controller on the handlebars. The Flow app is compatible with all Rail models and enables riders to access other data and update the system via Bluetooth and, similar to a car, it will advise when a service is needed. Just like the Fuel EX, the Rail's come with the RIB, which makes it easier to take the battery out and charge it up separately to the bike.
Liv expands its hardtail line-up
2023 Liv Lurra 1 - Front Angle.jpg, by Liv / Giant
The new women-specific Liv Lurra utilises a progressive geometry, a high-quality aluminium frame, and 130mm travel up at the front. It's aimed to satisfy those who are a little more playful in their riding without stepping into full suspension territory, while the steeper seat tube angle allows riders to climb more efficiently. The new Lurra can push limits that bit further with the solid 'feel everything' feel that comes with a hardtail.
Starting from £1,399, the Lurra comes with either SRAM or Shimano componentry depending on the model, and will be available around May.
New bike manufacturer launches gravel range
2023 Windover Bikes Bostal, by 2023 Windover Bikes
Sussex-based Windover Bikes, a newly launched brand, has unveiled its first two gravel bikes. Using years of design and technology experience, the steel-framed bikes use Reynolds 853 tubing and feature an array of UK-branded componentry.
The Bostal is versatile for adventure and allows chunky gravel and mountain bike tyres. The Beacon is a hardtail mountain bike/off-road touring bike with progressive geometry and flat bars. As a side project, Windover has produced a carbon fork called Type 3. When these forks are paired with the Beacon model, the frame shape can accommodate shorter riders without compromising space. Particularly important when loading the bike with luggage. If rigid forks aren't your cup of tea, you can put something like the RockShox Rudy or Fox 32s on the front.
Read the full story to find out where to test them:
Cube updates Stereo bikes
German-based brand Cube has updated its Stereo range. Keeping up with the impressive competition, the long-standing full suspension range has decided to stay in the race with updated geometry and new designs. With five bikes on offer, they range from 120mm - 170mm of travel. All of the bikes are named ONE, and the number after this replicates the amount of travel you get. So for simplicity, the ONE22 has 120mm, the ONE44 features 140mm, and so on.
There is also an e-MTB with a Bosch CX Smart System and a whopping 750Wh battery. All run on 29-inch wheels and the entry-level model will cost you £2,100 to £9,000 for the ONE77, and up to £10,100 for the top-end electric model.
Fox adds footwear to its collection
Fox has added footwear to its apparel and protection collection, providing something to cover you from head to toe. The brand has added two clipless options and one flat show, the Union shoe. Two years of making and with feedback from pro athletes Greg Minnaar, Jackson Goldstone, Steve Peat, and Nina Hoffman.
Each shoe is built with a one-piece welded upper, a moulded toe cap, and a reinforced toe box for added protection. An Ultratac rubber outsole is durable and grippy, with the clipless versions coming as lace-ups or a Boa precision fit dial. The flats are laced with a velcro piece for extra hold and are perfect for even hike-a-bike sections. Sizes range from 37-47 EU and cost £130 for the flats to £220 for the Union Boa.
Rab adds cycling collection to its outdoor apparel
2023 Cinder Gravel, by Rab
Mountaineering brand Rab has expanded its premium clothing collection to offer cyclists the same high-quality apparel. Rab has used its decade's worth of expertise in producing clothing and equipment to offer protection to outdoor enthusiasts and produced a range called the Cinder Collection that is suitable for off-road riding, such as bikepacking adventures.
Available in both a women's and men's fit, the collection comprises 31 pieces ranging from cargo bibs, trousers, wind and waterproof jackets to both short and long-sleeve jerseys. Some garments are a perfect pairing to a bikepacking trip with features such as a frame attachable stuff sack for easy storage and don't take up any space in your bike bags. Watch his space for some ORCC reviews.
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