The only thing better than riding itself is looking at things to go riding in and with Black Friday in full flight, never before has there been a better time for some #inspiration. With that in mind, here are 11 top products to hit the doors of BikeRadar's British and Australian HQs this week.
New mountain bike gear
Pivot Firebird X01 Eagle
Pivot's 170mm travel Firebird is designed for the hard charging rider in the toughest terrain. With a slack 65-degree head angle and long reach, it should offer great handling at high speeds. Combined with a full carbon frame, you'll be able to ride back up to the top of the hill too.
Available in a variety of builds, our X01 Eagle model features some seriously high spec components from Reynolds, Fox, Shimano and SRAM. As you can imagine these things don't come cheap, with builds ranging from around £5,000–£8,000.
- £6,450 / $6,799 / AU$N/A
B'Twin 500 MTB Shoe
Coming in at the £50 mark, the 500 shoe from B'Twin offers great value for money and performance to boot. Velcro straps may seem old fashioned, but they’re reliable and work well, keeping the weight down to 427 grams per shoe (size 45). That’s an impressive number, being only 27 grams heavier than some full carbon brands costing five times as much.
Look out for a full review soon.
- £49.99 / $N/A / AU$N/A
Fabric M200 pump
If you’ve ever tried pumping up your high volume mountain bike tyres with a regular hand pump you’ll know how annoyingly long it can take. Especially when you’re dealing with an untimely puncture. Fabric has designed the M200 to pump up to 30psi much quicker than a regular hand pump, whilst keeping the size reasonable.
It can be attached to your bike, and being made from tough aluminium means it should be able to take a beating.
- £32.99 / $49.99 / AU$N/A
Topeak Torque 5
Topeak’s 5nm compact torque wrench is designed to prevent you from stripping threads or cracking fancy carbon components on your beloved steed. It features a 4/5/6mm Allen and T25 Torx bit, so will work on all those important parts like stems, seatposts and handlebars.
Everything fits neatly into a magnetised compartment, making it harder to lose those small parts.
- £18.99 / $N/A / AU$N/A
Lazer Woman’s Lara helmet
The Lara helmet from Lazer looks to have everything you need in a modern trail helmet, at a price that won’t break the bank. It sits low on the head, offering great protection and the ATS adjustment system should enable a secure fit.
A size small weighs 290g, which is nice and light for a helmet of this price. We love this faded colourway, but if you’re after something more subdued, it’s also available in black.
- £79.99 / $N/A / AU$N/A
Sombrio Smuggler bib liner
If you prefer to ride without that bulky backpack, then Sombrio’s Smuggler bib liners could be just the ticket. They feature enough storage for your ride essentials with three pockets on the back and one zipper stow pocket down the side. The mesh panelling along the front is pretty see through, so they definitely want to be worn under your regular baggies when riding.
- £100/ $130 / AU$N/A
New road gear
Elv^8 Pinnacle Kit
Elv^8 is a new Aussie kit brand that is taking a different approach to the majority of niche start-up brands out there. Instead of producing kit with wild designs, Elv^8 has opted to produce aero-optimised performance apparel backed by wind tunnel data.
The brainchild of Ryan Carter, a former Product Designer for Nike, and Hari Gopu an Aerodynamics Specialist, they say that during CFD and wind tunnel testing the Elv^8 kits “consistently delivered between two and six percent reduced drag compared to other leading brands in the industry.”
Both the Pinnacle Jersey and Bibs incorporate Aero-Tex aerodynamic engineered fabric, which utilises patent pending Spherical Seam technology. According to Elv^8, this textured material reduces the drag forces by altering the airflow characteristics at the boundary layer.
The garments are cut based on anatomical body mapping to reduce excess material and feature wide silicone infused grippers at the ends of the sleeves, legs, and bottom of the jersey to minimise bunching.
- Jersey: £101 / $126 / AU$170
- Bibs: £137 / $170 / AU$230
- Socks: £22 / $28 / AU$37.50
Met Strale helmet
Last week MET announced its latest road helmet the Strale. While there aren’t much in the way of vents, MET says it's designed the helmets air channelling around the Venturi effect, meaning the system literally sucks in cool air at the front and pushes out hot air. Other MET helmets, like the Rival, have used similar channeling systems to great effect.
Our size medium sample tipped the scales at 235g and features the Italian brand's ponytail friendly, micro adjustable Safe-T Duo retention system.
- £79 / €89 / $TBC / AU$139
Maap X Bellroy All Conditions Phone Pocket
Aussie brands Maap and Bellroy have teamed up to produce the All Conditions Phone Pocket. It’s a riding wallet made from water resistant leather and a water-resistant YKK zipper, so it will keep your phone, ID and cash safe from rain and sweat — though probably best not to take it for a swim.
The inside is lined with soft microfiber and there are two internal pockets to help keep you organised. The wallet measures 156mm x 92mm and will fit an iPhone 6 / 6s / 7 or similar device.
- £93 / $100 / AU$150
Life Behind Bars ‘The Peloton’ ASPHALT Backpack
Designed as a collaboration between Jakarta based urban cycling lifestyle company Life Behind Bars and custom motorbike builders Thrive Motorcycles, ‘The Peloton’ ASPHALT is definitely one for the haulers of the cycling world.
The 34L main storage area (expandable to a cavernous 48L in cargo mode) paired with its six highly configurable compression straps allows you to carry a lot of stuff. There are also an incredible number of pockets to help you organise your bits and bobs in a highly efficient way.
As you’d expect with a bag that’s designed with haulage in mind, there are lots of straps and hooks to hang and tie things to and from — all of which extends the ability to carry large and weirdly shaped loads.
In the short time I’ve had this, I’ve already strapped a large parcel to the outside of the bag while the main compartment was stuffed with a smaller package and clothes which, for the 15 minute ride home, made me feel totally immersed in the #messengerlife.
- £NA / $195 / AU$NA — International shipping available
Madison Isoler Face Guard
Madison’s Isoler Face Guard is made to combat those chilly, face freezing rides with its Roubaix fleece-lined inner and a wind and waterproof outer fabric.
If you’ve ever worn glasses with a buff covering your face then you’ve no doubt experienced fogging lenses. Madison has attempted to solve this by laser cutting breathing holes, which allow your cheeks to remain toasty without compromising breathing when you’re lugging yourself up those climbs.
A lengthened neck allows you to tuck the face guard in your jacket for extra wind protection.
- £13 / $TBC / AU$TBC