Cotic uncovers the Tonic - An all new gravel bike for 2021
Cotic's all-new Tonic takes from the much-loved Escapade and builds upon it, shaving weight and improving cable management. It also features a full titanium build apart from its carbon fork and there's a shed load of tyre clearance for ultimate on and off-road comfort.
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The Tonic is built around a butted 3Al/2.5V seamless titanium tubed frame, which over its older sibling, the Escapade, saves 600 grams. The frame features Cotic's Ovalform top tube which optimises ride and handling, says the brand.
It also gets a smooth integral headset in its tapered head tube and the rear end is custom shaped with clearance for up to a 700x44 tyre, although the bike is supplied with 700x37c slicks.
As for the fork, that's a full carbon RB5 fork that weighs 550 grams. As with the rear, the fork features a tonne of clearance for up to a 700x45 or 650x50 tyre in the front. It also comes with three 'anything cage' style mounts on each leg, flat mount brakes and mudguard eyelets.
Finally, the frame benefits from Cotic's Inside Out Cable Management. That means that the Tonic offers a host of cable management solutions for a range of drivetrain set-ups, including more traditional semi-internal routing for gear cables and full Shimano Di2 compatibility. It's also routed for a dropper post.
The Tonic uses the brand's Ultra Compact Geometry - Road shape, meaning that these frames are low and long. Cotic recommends a 350mm seat post due to the compact size. However, the geometry remains unchanged from the Escapade. If it ain't broke, don't fix it, right?
But for those who don't know the Escapade's geometry by heart, the Tonic gets a 72° head tube angle on a medium and large frame, while the XS gets a 71° angle, and the small gets a 71.5° head tube. Then there's a 73° seat tube angle on medium and larges, with the XS and small seeing a 73.5° seat tube. Every size gets a 425mm chainstay.
While Cotic is super happy to support custom builds, the brand also offers a few stock builds including the Gold Apex1 option which gets a SRAM Apex 1x11 drivetrain with matching brakes. Then it rolls on a pair of Cotic hubs on Deep Section Disc rims, wrapped with a pair of Continental Sport Contact 2 37c tyres.
There's then the RoadPlus Gold 1x SRAM Apex which gets most of the kit you'll find on the build previously mentioned but it rolls on CC hubs laced to WTB KOM i23 rims with a pair of WTB Horizon RoadPlus 47c Skinwall TCS tyres.
Then topping the range is the Platinum 2x SRAM Force 2x12 etap AXS model which, as you might have guessed, comes with SRAM Force 2x12 etap AXS shifting with matching brakes, along with Hope 20FIVE RS4 wheels, wrapped with Continental Sport Contact 2 37c tyres.
The Cotic Tonic is a very limited edition with only 32 being built in 2021.
Prices for these builds start at £3450 and top out at £5,100.
Not sure they're too fat for road use, I've been running 38mm (actually 40x622) panaracer gravel king slicks and they are quicker than the 32mm slicks I had been using previously, they're definitely not a hinderence on the road if you're not in a race or chasing strava segments (although I've set some much faster PBs on them lately) I agree about not being ideal for more than a bit of farm track though.
37c slicks is an "interesting" choice - especially for the UK. Too fat for good road progress and not enough tread for Gravel/Bridleway/Singletrack. Something like the 38c G-One might have been a better choice. which is what I run currently - just a little more nobbly.