Rondo has already made waves with its RUUT gravel machine and the geometry changing flip-chip in the fork that alters the head angle and fork trail to switch the handling character of the bike between sharp and smooth. Now it's used the same design cues to integrate the flip chip into a new aero road machine.
The Rondo HVRT’s carbon frame was designed to be both aero and adaptable, using a combination of CFD (computational fluid dynamics) design, prototyping, and wind tunnel testing.
The HVRT’s setup can be switched between HI and LO settings.
In the HI position the bike has a higher front-end, slacker head angle and a longer trail. Rondo claims it also allows space for bigger tyres and/or fenders, and if you make the switch to 650b wheels you can run massive 47c tyres.
In the LO position the head angle steepens and gives a shorter trail, which makes the bike more aggressive, responsive and much more race focused.
In terms of numbers, if you take a size large and compare the geometries between the settings there is a significant difference on paper.
Compare that to two similar styled bikes from a competitor, say Cannondale, and the 58cm SuperSix Evo and Synapse hit similar numbers for the bike's two settings; with the Evo having a 584mm stack and 399mm reach, and the Synapse a 610mm stack and 393mm reach. The Rondo gets within mm's of both bikes, which does back up its claims to creating both a race and sportive bike in one.
Aside from the carbon aero models, it's also got an aluminium and steel version in the works. With these priced much, much lower they should appeal to first upgraders, those looking for a bike to start out on that's a more stable and easy to handle machine to build confidence, and those who ride for fitness and want to switch into a swifter and nimbler machine.
For the high-end machines I like the idea of being able to adjust the geometry and have an aero race bike for fast days and have a lightweight carbon machine with fat tyres for cobbles, tough roads and even gravel. Or as Rondo founder and owner of NS Bikes Szymon Kobylinski told us: "The idea was a bike we can race on [in Poland] during the season and then switch to fatter tyres and fenders when the snow comes in the winter, it’s a bike that’ll keep us riding more."
Rondo tells us the range should be available in the spring of 2018 and we’ve already put our request in for a test bike.
Rondo HVRT range
At the moment the range includes four bikes: the CF1, CF2 and aluminium and steel models.
The range topping CF1 with a special super-light carbon frame and fork, carbon disc wheels, Easton finishing kit and Shimano’s latest Ultegra Di2 for £4,999.
The CF2 uses the same frame design as the CF1, but with more modest carbon content, Shimano 105, carbon wheels and Easton finishing kit, and will be priced at £2,799.
The CF frameset is available separately at £1,999.
HVRT aluminium model
The aluminium version uses a custom formed tubeset and the HVRT twintip carbon fork, Shimano Tiagra and mechanical disc brakes for £1,399.
HVRT steel model
The steel model uses Tange Prestige for the frame tubing and the HVRT carbon fork up front, Shimano 105 with BR505 hydraulic brakes and is priced at £1,399.