Exotic Foreign Imports: 5 racey new road bikes from Europe

Integration, aero enhancements, light weight, and lots of racing heritage

Interbike Road Bike

Interbike RoadBikeReview

BH Bike

BH Ultralight EVO

Spain’s BH Bikes makes its play for a spot in the “lightest bike” conversation with the new Ultralight EVO, claimed size medium frame weight 690 grams with no rider weight limit. Frame features include a full carbon front derailleur mount, BB386 bottom bracket, 1.125-1.5-inch ride stiffening tapered headtube, asymmetric chainstays, and hollow core construction that eliminates redundant material. Cable routing is convertible and a 27.2mm seatpost helps soften the ride. Only available as a frameset in the U.S. MSRP: $4,000. bhbikes-us.com

Look 795

Look 795 Aerolight

French bike maker Look takes integration to stratospheric levels with its lightweight, wind cheating roadster, the 795 Aerolight. This masterpiece in stealth industrial design hides its brakes inside the fork and under the chainstay, tucks the stem into the headtube, conceals the Di2 junction box inside the frame, and has some of the slickest internal cable/wire routing we’ve ever seen. Actually, you barley see the wires and cables at all. Exact U.S. pricing is yet to be released, but expect frame and fork to run north of $5,000. lookcycle.com

Wilier Bike

Wilier Triestina Zero.7

This Italian racing stallion from Wilier Triestina defies categorization. Claimed weight for a size medium frame is an absurd 750 grams to please the climber sect, while its beefy BB area is stiff enough for any bunch sprint. It also comes stock with a 27.2mm seatpost to help suck up the rough stuff on roubaix rides. Frame highlights include a wide BB386EVO bottom bracket that helps maintain stiffness and provide plenty of attachment space for a girthy downtube and asymmetric chainstays, which conspire to firm up the entire chassis. Inside, Wilier uses what it calls special elastic infiltrated film that resides between layers of carbon and replaces a layer of mid-modulus fibers. The net effect, according to the manufacturer, is a frame that’s lighter, stronger and more compliant. Internal routing is convertible between mechanical and electronic. Frame and fork runs $5,000 with a swanky Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 build coming in at $9,500. wilier.com

Eddy Merckx EMX-525

Eddy Merckx EMX-525

Billed as the ultimate race bike, the Eddy Merckx EMX-525 is geared directly at the competitive crowd. If you’re still signing up for centuries, look elsewhere. But if like Eddy himself, you’d like to accumulate 525 career race wins, you’ll appreciate this Belgium-designed bike’s beefed up frame design, which includes asymmetric seat and chain stays, a wide head tube, and integrated fork, which all unite to help you go faster. Frame and fork run $5,000, with a top shelf Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 build coming in at $12,500. eddymerckx.be

Cipo Nuke

Cipollini Nuke

Finally, we need a time trial bike, and for that we turn to Mario Cipollini and his Italian bike brand’s new Nuke, which is available by special order only, $10,000 for frame and fork. This eye-catcher is built around a semi-monocoque chassis and Cipollini’s interesting AtomLink system, where chainstays attach via a bonded lock-and-key configuration that allows the rear brake to literally be integrated inside the frame. The design is also claimed to beef up the BB area. Up front, the brake is recessed inside the fork and an adjustable, three-piece stem can be flipped without removing the top cap, and has ports for wires to route through stem for a super clean aero look. Cipollini also wins the award for best promo video — hands down. mcipollini.com

This article is part of RoadBikeReview’s coverage of the 2014 Interbike trade show in Las Vegas. For more from Interbike CLICK HERE.

About the author: Jason Sumner

An avid cyclist, Jason Sumner has been writing about two-wheeled pursuits of all kinds since 1999. He’s covered the Tour de France, the Olympic Games, and dozens of other international cycling events. He also likes to throw himself into the fray, penning first-person accounts of cycling adventures all over the globe. Sumner, who joined the RoadBikeReview.com / Mtbr.com staff in 2013, has also done extensive gear testing and is the author of the cycling guide book "75 Classic Rides: Colorado." When not writing or riding, the native Coloradoan can be found enjoying time with his wife Lisa and daughter Cora.


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