Aero sunglasses from POC, off-road pants from Rapha, tan Michelin tires, Shimano’s latest Dura-Ace disc brake rotors


It’s time for another edition of first look fridaya weekly roundup of the latest loot arriving at BikeRadar HQ, as well as a chance to revisit some content highlights from the week.

This week is packed with delicious news, reviews, features and more. Before we dive into the new kit description, let’s take a look at what you may have missed.

Giant’s sister brand Liv EnviLiv Advanced – That version of the high rating 2023 Giant Propel.

We were lucky enough to get our hands on a test bike and testers before launch. Catherine Moore, found it to be “super fast, yet surprisingly smooth and comfortable.” A great option for women who race or simply like to go fast.

Café du Cycliste takes hike-a-bike to a whole new level. Gravel shoes inspired by hiking boots.

Meanwhile, in the men’s pro race, the Uno-X Pro Cycling Team will compete at the Volta ao Algarve. New and pretty quirky time trial helmet.

probably made by a team sponsor sweet protectionthe helmet looks to be inspired by POC tempoby using a flared shape designed to smooth airflow over the rider’s shoulders.

For more traditional thinking, there was also news in the form of two new road bike platforms. Pinarello.

on wednesday F-series A road race bike that is essentially a baby Dogma Fand the X-series Endurance road bike.

Senior Technical Editor at BikeRadar, Ashley Quinlanpull a short straw and fly out into sunny southern Spain, Pinarello F7 Ultegra Di2 Through that pace for the first ride review.

Look forward to his full review soon, as he’s had the chance to do a more thorough test on the UK’s less flattering roads.

Deputy Editor-in-Chief Jack Luke has his own way of digging deep into the mental archives of dream bikes, Trek District Carbon – “Ultra-premium, all-carbon, purpose-built single-speed belt-drive bike”, £2,800 in 2009.

Finally, the latest bike of the week was BMC Four Strokethe latest from the Swiss brand cross country mountain bikewhich was launched in October last year.

Well, let’s take a look at some of the exciting new kits arriving on BikeRadar this week.

POC Propel Sunglasses

POC’s new Propel sunglasses promise an aero effect.
Kaden Gardener / Our Media

Have you ever woken up in bed worrying about the aerodynamic performance of your sunglasses?

POC recently released new Propel sunglasses optimized for CFD.

According to the Swedish brand, Propel sunglasses are “the most aerodynamic. cycling sunglasses” has been created.

According to POC, the Propels work with wraparound lenses and small plastic fairings on the sides to help guide airflow around the ears and shoulders more smoothly.

POC designed the Propel sunglasses using CFD modeling.

As for gains, POC says it’s “only single digit” watt savings at 40km/h, but the exact amount depends on the rider and their position on the bike.

POC bases this claim solely on data gathered from POC’s CFD modeling (the computational fluid dynamics software essentially acts as a virtual wind tunnel) and uses other forms of aerodynamic testing such as wind tunnels and trucks. It points out that it has not been confirmed by test.

The main aerodynamic features are said to lie in the wraparound lens design and a small fairing at the edge of the lens.
Kaden Gardener / Our Media

However, POC is notoriously temporary time trial helmetshows that the CFD aero gains translate to the real world.

At £230 / $250 / €249, the Propel is at the top of the line when it comes to sunglasses. However, it is available in a variety of colors and includes a spare clear lens as standard.

Rapha Explore Pants

Rapha’s new Explore pants are designed for gravel riding.
Kaden Gardener / Our Media

even best mountain bike pants In the old days, they looked like pajamas or combat pants.

This was a problem for those who didn’t want to look like toddlers or preppers when harvesting sweet, sweet loam.

However, the situation has improved significantly in recent years.

With a tapered cut, no useless cargo pockets, and neutral branding, the riding pants look as good when you’re eating a flat white as when you’re riding flat out.

we loved Rapha Trail Pants For these reasons, the brand has adapted its proven design to the world. gravel riding.

Trousers are made from abrasion resistant fabric with a DWR coating.
Kaden Gardener / Our Media

Rapha’s new Explore Pants are made from a 4-way stretch, abrasion-resistant fabric. It is coated with a DWR (durable water repellent) layer.

A cinchable hem keeps the cuffs away from oily chains. Amazingly, it comes with a color-matched iron-on repair patch.

The gray and orange version looks a little too much like a ski salopette for our tastes, but luckily it’s also available in black or gray.

Michelin Powercup TLR Classic Tire

Is 2023 the year of the tanwall tubeless tire?
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

but, Michelin Power Cup series launched in March 2022just managed to get our hands on the most coveted set of items in the range, ‘Classic’. tan wall tubeless tires.

compared to the biscuit-colored sidewalls found in Continental GP5000 S TR or Schwalbe Pro One TLEthe Power Cup TLR has a much more traditional light tan hue.

So is this a tire that combines a true cotton casing with tubeless technology?

The “classic” tan wall look is painted over a biscuit brown casing.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

No, it’s not. A closer look reveals a similar biscuit vulcanized nylon casing with an added layer of tan paint to complete the look.

Tanwall truismists like my colleague Liam Cahillthen have to wait to see if the rumors are new Vittoria Corsa Pro You can manage.

However, the tan paint layer on the Power Cup TLR’s sidewalls is thin enough to allow the casing threads to slightly show through.

Luckily, this avoids making the tanwall effect overly smooth and inorganic (as in digital photography). excessive noise reduction).

The Michelin Power Cup TLR Classic tires performed well in independent rolling resistance tests.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

According to independent tests, these tires are surprisingly fast, best road bike tires for speed. Given this, I’m looking forward to running these for a few miles heading into spring.

Our 700 x 28c tire set weighs 283g per tire.

Shimano RT-CL900 disc brake rotor

Shimano’s RT-CL900 disc brake rotors are the new top of the line road disc brake rotors.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

in my review Shimano Dura Ace Di2 R9200I left with some of my highest praise for the new RT-CL900 disc brake rotors.

It was quietly launched at the same time as the Dura-Ace R9200 launch. 105 Di2 R7100RT-CL900 rotors add a little weight to the braking system, but more than make up for it by offering a quieter overall performance. It seems to be starting to spread.

Carrier arms are reinforced to improve thermal deformation.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

The physical changes are subtle compared to the XTR RT-MT900 it replaced, but Shimano claims the RT-CL900 rotor uses a “stronger” carrier and arm geometry.

Like the previous generation Dura-Ace brake rotors, Shimano also included a black heat dissipating paint on the internal cooling fins just below the braking surface.

If you want to save some money Ultegra-The Rebel RT-CL800 rotor uses what appears to be an otherwise identical design, but without this special paint.

These Dura-Ace Level rotors have a special black paint on the cooling fins for improved heat dissipation.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

Our 160 and 140mm RT-CL900 rotor sets weigh 207g, 11g heavier than comparable MT-RT900 sets.

This is purely subjective, but I think those new rotors look a little nicer too.

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