Diamondback’s Andean triathlon bike caused quite a stir when it emerged late last year and it’s not difficult to see why.
Designed specifically for triathlon competition rather than time trialling, the Andean never had to conform to the restrictive stipulations required for UCI approval.
Instead, the brief for Diamondback and its partners on the two-year Andean project was simply to create the fastest triathlon bike on the market.
Draw an imaginary line between the inner diameters at both of the Andean’s rims and you will find the entire section is one large airfoil Oliver Woodman/Immediate Media
The result is a carbon frame and fork so radical that it seems closer to that of a superbike than most bicycles. An almost entirely enclosed main frame divides into two swingarm-like chainstays leaving no seat stays to speak of.
SRAM’s wireless Red eTap transmission makes for an especially clean look below the rear axle
The team behind the Andean took a unique approach towards its aerodynamics, starting with the centre of the bike’s wheels — where they claim a bike is least aerodynamic. Hence if you draw a line between the inner diameters at both of the Andean’s rims you will find the entire section is one large airfoil. It’s this area that Diamondback claims will dramatically reduce drag at every yaw angle.
Back in September, Diamondback’s VP of product development Michael Brown claimed the Andean triathlon bike would “out-compete anything in the market today, both in the tunnel and on the road.”
The large surface area of the Andean frame makes for a whole lot of potential storage space, which it turns out was something that Diamondback’s professional athletes had been requesting.
They sure got what they wanted too, as here we have a bike that features no less than six compartments, with room for everything from salt tabs and energy fuel to a rider’s wallet and tool kit. Hell, there’s even a dedicated rubbish compartment.
This area is designed to contain tools, it’s one of many storage compartments built into the Andean Oliver Woodman/Immediate Media
The Andean’s disc only design places thru-axles at both ends of the bike while the cables for TRP’s Spyre mechanical discs travel within the Andean’s frame and fork through to the HED Corsair aero cockpit.
SRAM’s wireless Red eTap transmission makes for an especially clean look below the rear axle, while its eTap Clic shift buttons neatly integrate into the bar extensions.The Andean rolls on HED Jet 6 Plus and Jet 9 Plus wheels matched with 23mm Continental GP 4000s II tyres.
This particular Andean has arrived as part of a group test from our sister publication 220Triathlon, the test will see the Andean pitched against the Cervélo P5x and Dimond’s Marquise, two similarly unconventional UCI illegal bikes. For those wondering, it tipped our scales at a slightly chubby 10.24kg/22.57lbs.
Wait, where are the seatstays? Oliver Woodman/Immediate Media
Complete build Andeans range from a $4,779 SRAM Force X1 bike with HED Ardennes Plus wheels right up to a top-end Dura-Ace Di2 model with hydraulic discs and HED Jet Black 9 wheels for $8,069.
Our SRAM Red eTap bike with its HED Jet disc wheels wouldn’t be far behind that price, although we’re still waiting for UK/AU pricing to be confirmed.
Stay tuned for a full review in the near future.