This Yasujiro Svelte weighs just 5.42kg, which we reckon makes it the lightest steel road bike in the world.
Yasujiro is the in-house bike brand of tubing manufacturer Tange.
This frame is constructed from the brand’s premium double-butted Ultimate tubing. The walls of this tubing are a mere 0.35mm thick (!) at their thinnest point. This ultralight tubing is at the heart of this remarkable bike and we are utterly in love with it.
There are not enough bars wrapped with cotton tape.Jack Luke / Immediate Media
The bars are wrapped in a lovely thin, black, cotton bar tape. Running no bar tape would, of course, be lighter, but I appreciate this nod towards practicality.
The bike is built around a SRAM Red eTap groupset.Jack Luke / Immediate Media
The bike is built around a previous generation SRAM eTap 11-speed groupset, though, curiously, Yasujiro has opted for an older RED 22-era crankset. These are finished with a set of lightweight chainrings, which also come from Be King.
In a most welcome but rather rare move for a weight weenie bike, the bike features a threaded bottom bracket shell.
Most press-fit bottom bracket systems are lighter than traditional threaded bottom brackets but, as we all know by now, these can be a nightmare to live with.
The bike has small cutouts in the base of the bottom bracket to reduce weight.Jack Luke / Immediate Media
Small windows have been cut out from the base of the bottom bracket shell to shave precious grams.
Simple slimmed-down external stops for the rear brake cable are also used to shave weight over internal routing.
The straight 1 1/8in steerer matches the tubing perfectly.Jack Luke / Immediate Media
Yasujiro has opted for a traditional straight 1 ⅛in steerer with an external headset for the Svelte.
I personally welcome this because it complements the skinny profile of the bike’s main tubes better than a modern chunky, tapered head tube.
Cane Creek’s EE brakes offer super strong braking in a lightweight package.Jack Luke / Immediate Media
No lightweight build is complete without a set of lightweight brakes and Yasujiro has opted for a set of Cane Cree EE brakes.
We’re big fans of these feathery calipers here at BikeRadar because they offer remarkably strong braking in a ludicrously light package.
The true weight weenie in me sees plenty of opportunities to trim weight from this build — a 1x drivetrain, a lighter crankset and removing the steerer bung are all obvious places to start. However, I appreciate the practicality of the bike as it currently stands.
It was refreshing to find such a simple and beautiful frame at Eurobike.Jack Luke / Immediate Media
It was also a breath of fresh air to see such a simple and handsome bike among a sea of ‘dropped seatstay this’ and ‘aero formed that’ at Eurobike.
Tange Ultimate tubing is some pretty special stuff.Jack Luke / Immediate Media
That it’s such a lovely looking thing while pushing the boundaries of what’s possible with a steel frame is nothing short of remarkable.
Note: I have searched extensively to make sure this really is the lightest steel road bike. However, it is entirely possible that in some hidden corner of the internet, reports of something even lighter exist. Please let me know if you’re aware of something lighter in the comments!
Jack has been riding and fettling bikes for his whole life. Always in search of the hippest new niche in cycling, Jack is a self-confessed gravel dork, fixie-botherer, tandem-evangelist, hill-climbing try hard, and thinks nothing of taking on a daft challenge for the BikeRadar YouTube channel. With a near encyclopaedic knowledge of cycling tech — from the most esoteric niche nonsense to the most cutting edge modern kit — Jack takes pride in his ability to seek out tech and stories that would otherwise go unreported. Jack has been at BikeRadar for three years now and is regularly testing an esoteric mix of weird and wonderful bikes.