Swedish company POC – known for their mountain bike helmets, armour and goggles – are poised to launch an extensive range of performance road bike gear with an emphasis on safety.
The centrepiece of the range, which BikeRadar have just seen, is an extremely light road helmet called the Octal. This is priced at US$270/£TBC, with an aero version with reduced venting priced at US$299/£TBC.
Lance Armstrong was photographed wearing an Octal on a ride recently, although precise details have been kept under wraps. We’ll have more information on the helmet on BikeRadar soon.
The design of POC’s road clothing range is underpinned by a concept dubbed AVIP, standing for ‘attention, visibility, interaction and protection’. The collection of bib shorts, jerseys, rainwear and accessories (such as leg warmers, gloves and eyewear) adopts a colour scheme of reflective logos, light and dark contrasts and distinctive fluorescent ‘zinc orange’. It’s all designed to draw attention.
Besides safety, other clothing performance parameters, including aerodynamics, have been closely inspected. Jerseys employ a fabric with a rough, almost sandpaper-like outer surface that POC say smoothes airflow over the arms, shoulders and back.
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The company are also working with third-party technology providers ICEdot to provide riders with a small telemetry device that can be fixed to helmets. When the ICEdot recognises an impact that could render you unconscious, it automatically accesses your iPhone 4S or 5 (an Android version is coming soon) and messages a warning – including GPS co-ordinates and key medical data – to preselected contacts and the emergency services.
POC’s origins lie in providing safety gear to skiers and other gravity sports enthusiasts. They have grown a loyal following among mountain bikers for their range of high performance helmets.
Pricing and further details on the POC road range are expected in August 2013.