Tennessee-based Litespeed, best known for its titanium manufacturing, has introduced a full range of carbon fibre frames and bikes: the Archon C1, C2 and C3, beginning at US$3,580/£2,199 for the C1 frameset. This is the second carbon effort, the first being with the Pavia in 2005.
Litespeed began importing aluminium/carbon frames from Asia in 2003, with models called Hyperion, Sirius and Antares. The Pavia was the company's first full carbon bike, which was discontinued due to poor sales after the 2006 season.
The Litespeed Archon C2 complete bike with a Shimano Dura-Ace kit will be US$5,860/£3,599; the C3 complete Shimano Ultegra bike will cost US$4,230/£2,599
Litespeed designers have also coined the phrase 'AeroLogic' when referring to the Archon's integrated aerodynamic stylings.
One AeroLogic feature, distinct to the C-Series line, includes the ‘shrouded’ water bottle mounting at the down tube which, according to Litespeed, creates a more efficient, gentle airflow around the water bottle and improves overall frame aerodynamics by reducing turbulent airflow over the rear triangle.
“Our design objective with the C-Series line was simple,” said Peter Hurley, CEO of American Bicycle Group, parent company of Litespeed, Merlin, and Quintana Roo. “Produce a bike that utilised the unique material advantages of carbon to offer genuine and distinct aerodynamic innovations and performance at an industry competitive price.”
Litespeed's Archon carbon line borrows a few pages from many years of fine-tuning and shaping titanium. Designers have chosen a semi-sloping road race geometry, mimicking the popular titanium Archon line.
The Archon C1 frameset and C2 and C3 bikes will be available beginning in January 2010.
For more information, visit www.litespeedcarbon.com.
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