Bike of the Week | Will Tadej Pogačar ride the Colnago V4Rs to Tour de France victory this year?
Aero all-round race bike gets an update
Launched in December 2022, Colnago’s new V4Rs has arrived at BikeRadar HQ for testing.
An update to the V3Rs, the V4Rs was ridden by Tadej Pogačar through the 2022 season under the Prototipo moniker.
Like its predecessor, the V4Rs is designed to balance aerodynamics, stiffness, weight, comfort and strength.
Will the aero all-round race bike lead Pogačar to Tour-winning victory this time around? Let’s take a closer look at this tasty build.
A striking frame
The new V4Rs doesn’t look too dissimilar from the V3Rs it replaces, and continues to use truncated airfoil tube shapes.
Colnago claims the new bike is 27.7 watts (around 6 per cent) more aerodynamically efficient than its predecessor. This was tested in a wind tunnel at 50kph / 31mph, and with deeper aero wheels.
Without the aero wheels, the difference is said to be 13.2 watts (around 3 per cent) at the same speed.
The V4Rs is also said to be 57g lighter overall. Breaking that down, an unpainted frame in a size 48.5cm is claimed to weigh 798g, which is actually 3g heavier than the V3Rs. However, the fork is 15g lighter, weighing in at 375g.
The V4Rs also draws inspiration from the lugged C68 in that the modular construction allowed for faster prototyping of the tube shapes. Colnago says it tested different tube profiles before settling on a final design.
The sculpted head tube is particularly striking and Colnago is another brand to use CeramicSpeed’s increasingly popular SLT (Solid Lubrication Technology) headset bearings.
Backed by a lifetime warranty, the bearings are claimed to be self-lubricating and corrosion-resistant. Given the V4Rs uses an integrated front end, that should make maintenance much easier.
Sticking with the front end, the V4Rs uses a standard round steerer rather than the D-shaped one found on its predecessor.
There’s a concealed Granite Stash RCX multi-tool that’s been modified for Colnago under the stem top cap.
Colnago specs the CC.01 bar, which first debuted on the C68. The Italian brand claims this offers a 16 per cent drag reduction over the two-piece cockpit on the V3Rs.
The seatstays are dropped slightly and the seat tube accepts a proprietary D-shaped seatpost, with an integrated bolt at the top of the top tube.
The V4Rs can accept up to 32mm road bike tyres and is only compatible with electronic groupsets. It uses a T47 threaded bottom bracket standard.
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A fitting spec
A frameset retails for £5,000 / €5,250.
This particular build uses a Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 R9200 groupset. Colnago specs 52/36 chainrings and an 11-30t cassette.
The bike would typically be specced with an ENVE 3.4 wheelset, but our test bike has been supplied with Shimano Dura-Ace R9270 C50 carbon wheels. This sees a 50mm-deep tubeless-compatible carbon rim paired with a 21mm internal rim width.
Pirelli P Zero Race tyres are a fitting choice for this Italian race machine and are specced in a 28mm width.
The stem length is 120mm and the handlebars are 42cm wide.
We’ve weighed the bike in at 7.22kg without pedals on our Scales of Truth.