Summer may be drawing to a close in the northern hemisphere, but BikeRadar is here to encourage you to rage, rage against the dying of the light. To help your fire burn brighter, here are 11 pieces of new gear.
- Here's why you shouldn't buy the cheapest tools
- Specialized Venge ViAS Disc joins the aero range
- 6 of the best sunglasses for mountain biking
Best new road bikes and gear
The Specialized Venge ViAS Expert Disc Ultegra
Specialized recently rolled out the disc version of the ViAS aero bike, and the Expert Disc Ultegra is the third in the line behind the S-Works eTap and Pro Disc Ultegra Di2.
A Specialized Pro carbon crank rounds out the Shimano Ultegra hydraulic group with 52/36 and 11-28.
While Specialized's first disc performance road bike, the Tarmac Disc, had quick releases, the new Venge goes for thru-axle. The bike comes with DT R460 Disc Pro tubeless wheels — not the carbon Roval models shown.
The sculpted down tube wraps around the front wheel and features what for Specialized is a surprisingly low-profile logo
The Aerofly handlebars come in 25mm drop (down to the stem) and flat versions.
£3,900 / US$4,500 / AU$6,400
Sako7 Pro Solitude
The Pro Solitude socks come in a range of styles, each made in the US or Belgium with a 6in cuff.
£16 / US$21 /AU$N/A
GoPro Pro Seat Rail Saddle Mount
GoPro now has a saddle-rail mount for its cameras. Compared to the K-Edge model that has been available for some time, the GoPro mount is more compact and only uses a single fastening bolt.
£32 / US$39 / AU$54
Garmin Edge 820
The Garmin Edge 820 combines features from the racer-friendly 520 and the navigation-wizard 1000. Turn-by-turn navigation features on the touchscreen computer and you can set routes by address, by uploading files or by selecting a distance for a round-trip and letting the computer determine a route.
Also new with the 820 is GroupTrack, which lets you see where fellow Garmin users are on your 820 — provided they have a newer Edge computer (like a 510, 520, 1000, etc.) paired to their smartphone.
£329 / US$399 / AU$649
Mavic CXR Ultimate aero helmet
Seemingly every company has an aero helmet these days, most of which feature fewer vents and a more elongated shape than a standard road helmet.
Mavic, however, takes a slightly different approach to many others, using a solid area over the forehead (compare this to, say, the POC Octal Aero Raceday that features a big vent at the center of the forehead) that the company says moves air over and around the helmet rather than into it.
Some 28 vents handle ventilation, and X-Static pads add cushioning with anti-bacterial properties.
We weighed this size Large at 278g.
£150 / US$219 / AU$N/A
Best new mountain bike gear
Prestacycle TorqKey T-Handle
Prestacycle has a range of preset torque wrenches that can be purchased individually or in various bundles.
There are 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10 and 12Nm wrenches available, each with a magnetic 1/4in hex bit retention and a crisp snap when the torque value is reached.
Bundle options include an individual wrench plus a 20-bit set; a 4, 5, 6 plus 20-bit set; a 7, 8, 10 and 12 plus 20-bit set; and all the wrenches plus the 20-bit set.
Each comes with a one-year warranty.
£23 / US$15 and up
Yeti Cycles Freeland shorts
The Freeland has a relaxed fit with a kneepad-friendly inseam length of 14 inches. Features include an adjustable waistband, two hand pockets and two zippered hip pockets. There are also two zippered vent pockets on the top of the thighs to allow the rider to regulate their temperature.
We’ve got the black version in for test, but if you’re a die-hard Yeti fan, you’ll be glad to know they are also available in turquoise.
£80 / US$100 / AU$130
POC Crave+ sunglasses
POC’s more than just a body armor and helmet company. The Swedish brand also has a full line of eyewear. The Crave+ is the latest model.
The partial frame is constructed from a flexible polymer called Grilamid. This flexible frame is less likely to get damaged if you stow the shades in your pack or jersey pocket.
POC offers the Crave+ with a wide range of lens colors to suit different riding environments. We have the light blue lenses, which are well-suited to the changing light conditions frequently found while mountain biking.
£250 / US$350 / AU$375
Continental Der Baron Projekt 29x2.4in tires
German rubber specialist Continental worked closely with enduro racers to refine this design. The Der Baron Projekt has sturdy knobs and a very open tread pattern that should fare well in muddy or loose conditions.
These treads use Conti’s Black Chili compound that balances grip with durability. The Der Baron is built around the company’s sturdy ProTection Apex casing, which uses four 240tpi plies under the tread and three 180tpi plies under the sidewalls to ward off punctures.
In addition to the 29x2.4in version we have in, this tubeless-ready tire also comes in 27.5 and even 26in versions.
£60 / US$70 / AU$105
Katadyn BeFree water filter
The new BeFree water filter combines a wide-mouth .6l HydraPak SoftFlask bottle with Katadyn’s EZ-Clean hollow-fiber filter. This filter is designed to filter out microorganisms such as Giardia and Cryptosporidium, and bacteria, such as E-Coli and Salmonella, frequently found in outdoor freshwater sources.
The soft flask makes this filter highly-packable. This could be a good option for short, one or two-night bikepacking adventures. It could also be a hit with riders looking to extend the range of daily rides without resorting to a larger pack.
Stay tuned for a review.
$40 / £TBC / AU$TBC
Pearl Izumi MTB WRX Jacket
The MTB WRX is a lightweight, packable shell that is wind- and water-resistant.This version of the Pearl Izumi’s classic WRX jacket has a relaxed, trail rider-focused cut and several mountain bike-centric features.
It’s not just designed to look good with baggies, it also has room in the sleeves to be worn over elbow pads. The hood is designed to fit over the rider’s helmet and there’s an exhaust vent on the back of the hood and vents under the armpits to regulate temperature and moisture build up.
£135 / US$175 / AU$230