The Sea Otter Europe bike show may be lacking in actual sea otters compared to its bigger American brother, but it's certainly not short on cool bike tech! Here are some of the tech highlights we've spotted from Spain's biggest bike show, including unreleased carbon goodies, wacky one-off paint jobs and just about every kind of bike you can imagine...
While our eyes initially wandered towards the baby blue version of CeramicSpeed's oversized pulley wheel system (above), we spotted what appears to be an unreleased prototype OSPW with solid jockey wheels. What benefits could this bring? Well, CeramicSpeed predictably answered "no comment", but that won't stop us from speculating...
Our first idea was that perhaps the solid jockey wheels could marginally improve aerodynamics, but given the OSPW Aero already exists and is unlikely to be due an update, we quickly discounted this idea. It seems far more likely that the solid wheels have been designed for mud clearance, something that was all but confirmed when we spotted one on the bike of Hans Becking, a marathon mountain biker (the solid jockey wheels on Becking's bike were black rather than silver, perhaps to disguise the unreleased tech).
Given the quality of the finish and the fact that we spotted it being used out in the field, we reckon it won't be long before there's an official release of this mysterious rear mech bling. If the solid jockey wheels are indeed for mud clearance, then we can expect to see the system being used during the upcoming cyclocross season.
Given the familiar shape of the cage, we'd say that this particular OSPW system is designed for SRAM rear mechs, but it's impossible to say whether a Shimano-compatible design will be released alongside.
CeramicSpeed was also showcasing its complete family of UFO bike maintenance products, which has recently grown to include a bike wash called UFO clean. It's available in a spray bottle or as a concentrate.
Loud paint jobs aren't to everyone's taste, so we'll let you decide whether this rather out there hand-painted design on the BH Aerolight road racer is hot or not...
Either way, the attention to detail can only be admired!
The Vuelta just gone will have put MMR bikes on the radar for many UK roadies, despite the brand already being well-established in much of Europe.
This Adrenaline SL is the same frame (and green paintjob) that the Caja Rural-Seguros RGA team used during this year's Grand Tour, although MMR also provides the team with it's Adrenaline Aero. Unsurprisingly given the name, that one is an aero bike...
This particular build, the SL 10, with Ultegra R8150 and DT Swiss ERC1400 Carbon 45mm wheels retails for €5,999 (£5,215) but no actual UK pricing is available at this time. That should change very soon though, as we were told that MMR bikes will be coming to the UK market in Q1 of 2024.
Camelbak has recently been expanding its bikepacking collection, and two of those upcoming products are these metal Podium bottles. The one on the left is made of titanium, while the one on the right is stainless steel. Both have dual-wall construction to help insulate the contents.
Camelbak claims these bottles will keep your drink cool for between 14 and 18 hours depending on external conditions. They won't come cheap though. The Stainless Steel bottle is $35 and the titanium one a whopping $100. For a water bottle!
Like many stands, the Canyon display had a pretty heavy gravel focus, so alongside the Ultimate and Aeroad road bikes were plenty of Grizls, Grails and Inflite CX bikes. It was to be expected that we'd see plenty of custom paint schemes, but perhaps less predictable that a brand would be custom painting one live at the show.
Canyon drafted in local artist Justo Heras, who was tasked with painting a Grizl CF SL 7 in front of a live audience.
We also had a good nosey at this Aeroad CFR MVDP edition. The CFR is the range-topping Aeroad, and this MVDP edition features a 3D headtube badge and an 'exclusive' colour scheme similar to that which van der Poel used to win Glasgow World Champs Road race.
The MVDP edition bike weighs in at a claimed 7.52kg, and will be available to purchase soon (December 2023 according to the Canyon website) with a price tag of £9,499.
There's always an abundance of top-end and expensive cycling kit at shows, so it's easy for cheaper products that are lower in the product ranges to get overlooked.
These Shimano RC3 shoes looked right at home next to RC9 Sphyres that cost over three times the price. The RC3s have an RRP of £100, but can currently be found for a lot less than that at multiple online retailers. Not bad for a shoe that looks quite so good! We'll be requesting a set for review...
Yep, you read that right...
There was plenty of wild, wacky and very pretty titanium bikes on show, but these Greenrock Adventure titanium kids and balance bikes might just take the biscuit.
The balance bike even features carbon forks and rims! That helps to keep the weight down to 2.4kg, and it will set you back £1,320.
The 20" kids mtb shown above, meanwhile, has an RRP of £800 for the frame, or £2,450 for the full 8-speed Microshift bike which weighs in at 10.45kg.
We posted plenty of updates from the show on the road.cc Instagram page, and by far the most popular bike was this pink Cinelli Nemo TIG.
The Nemo will be receiving plenty of updates in 2024 with a revised seat clamp area that is wlded rather than lugged, semi-internal cable routing and a high-ride fork to offer some suspension at the front. It's shown here with a 1x Campagnolo Ekar groupset.
Cinelli claims that the 2023 Nemo TIG has been "radically overhauled for 2024. The Nemo Gravel represents our most intensely hybridized and extreme adventure gravel bike ever."
What do you think of this triple-butted, hand-crafted beauty? Is it too far removed from tradition?
A bike with less classic lines is this GasGas Moto 1 e-bike, and yes, it is designed to look like a motorbike.
This fat-tyred beast from the motocross and trials company features 20" wheels, a 7-speed Microshift groupset, a Bafang hub motor and a 504Wh battery. The steel frame is available in just one size, and GasGas claims it's suitable for riders from 155cm to 190cm.
We really don't know what to say about this...
The Vent really does tick every e-mtb box: front and rear suspension, dropper post compatibility, a hub motor... so, has gravel gone too far? In my opinion, yes! Although the Frontier, which is manufactured in Italy, is patented, so thankfully (for me) it's going to be tough for the big brands to copy...
There's not much to say here other than it doesn't exactly look comfy, does it? We had a good poke around this Lotus Hope track bike that had followed us over from the UK. Every component has been honed to be as fast as possible, and more often than not that's to the detriment of comfort.
My personal favourite stand belonged to the Spanish carbon expert Darimo. On show were ridiculously light bikes, stems and seat posts, but the highlights had to be the bars and cranks.
It seems to be almost ritual that a superbike has an integrated cockpit these days, but options are limited. Darimo already has the 195g Nexum barstem in its range, but has now introduced this 247g aero-inspired design.
Like nearly all Darimo products, there are four carbon styles to choose from: matt, 3k, gloss or forged. It will also be available in three flare options: 0, 6 and 12, so there's potential to use this on a gravel bike too.
On this crazy 4.6kg bike, we also spotted prototype Darimo cranks with aluminium spindles. Darimo was tight-lipped on when it might hit the market, but this prototype set weighed in at around 300g, and featured a 30mm axle. We believe that Darimo will also offer a 29mm DUB-compatible crankset.
Peak Design claims to make phone cases & accessories that "do more, but
take up less space." The cases that we saw certainly did just that, providing a carbon-neutral alternative to the likes of Quadlock, to name just one.
The brand provides both universal bar mounts and aluminium out front mounts, which can secure your phone to a bike's bar using both a magnet and mechanical fixing.
You can find out more about Peak Design's products and environmental credentials here.
We've seen plenty of bike brands partner with Formula 1 teams in the past, and Basso is the latest to join the party.
Initially, we were under the impression that this Basso Diamante SV was nothing more than a (good-looking) paint job, but it would appear that the truth is much deeper than that. Not only do Alpha-Tauri drivers train on these bikes, but the pit crew members are also equipped with Basso Volta e-bikes to ferry themselves and their equipment around the F1 paddock.
Basso told us the partnership is influencing its future bike designs as well, no doubt due to the sharing of carbon fibre and aerodynamic knowledge. Watch this space!
Also making an appearance was this World-champ liveried Palta gravel bike. Basso has partnered with the event, which will be taking place this weekend just 10km away from the Basso factory in Bassano del Grappa, Italy.
Which is your favourite bike from the show? Let us know in the comments section below!
Jamie has been riding bikes since a tender age but really caught the bug for racing and reviewing whilst studying towards a master's in Mechanical engineering at Swansea University. Having graduated, he decided he really quite liked working with bikes and is now a full-time addition to the road.cc team. When not writing about tech news or working on the Youtube channel, you can still find him racing local crits trying to cling on to his cat 2 licence...and missing every break going...