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Just in: Look 585 Optimum - Updated with picture gallery

Classic carbon road bike with a comfort-tweaked geometry

This black beauty is Look’s all-round road frame and, in carbon terms, it has been around for an age – since 2004 to be precise. Well, kind of. The 585 has been around since 2004, but the 585 Optimum has a tweaked geometry – a shortened top tube and a lengthened head tube for a more upright ride position. But the thing is, despite its status as an elder statesman of the composite world, the 585 can still cut it against the young pretenders.

The Look is a lugged design which, for the uninitiated, means that instead of coming out of a mould more or less fully formed, it’s assembled from tubes that are bonded into separate connectors. Geddit? Simple. It’s made from very high modulus carbon fibre that keeps the rigidity high while keeping the weight down – the small size hits the scales at 990g, which really ain’t much.

There are a few other interesting features too. The bottom bracket shell, for example, is made using ‘Compressed Carbon Technology’. Essentially, Look pressurize it in the manufacturing process to produce a very stiff but still light part for transferring your power efficiently.

And up front you get Look’s Head Fit headset system – you’ve got to love that name. There's a threaded ring on the HSC 5SL fork's  steerer tube and you screw the insert at the top of the head tube (below the stem) down onto it in order to adjust the headset. Read it again – it does make sense. What’s the point of that? You can move or replace your stem without affecting your headset. And you can adjust your headset without messing about with your stem. Plus, it does away with the need for a compression plug and so saves a few grams – about 40 – in the process. We like it.

The 585 Optimum comes as a frame and forks package for £2,049.99, although ours is built up with a SRAM Force groupset and SRAM S80 deep-section wheels. Our XL model weighs in at 7.92kg (17.4lb), although you could easily lose a bit of weight with shallower rimmed wheels.

To be honest with you – don’t tell anyone else – the 585 Optimum isn’t actually ‘just in’. Yeah, we know – we're big, fat fibbers. We’ve been riding it loads over the past few weeks and have developed a bit of a soft spot for it. We’re just not going to tell you much about it yet. We can be like that at times: spiteful. Call back soon though and we’ll give you the full SP. Bye now.

Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now pushing 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.

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