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TECH NEWS's big recap: our top ten tech stories of 2018

We round up some of the biggest, best and most bizarre tech stories from over the past twelve months. What's your favourite?

2018 has been a big year for cycling tech... we've seen a pile of new bikes, new gears and plenty of intriguing components and here we've rounded up a mix of the most popular stories and some of our favourites from the past twelve months... 

1. Campagnolo first to launch 12 speed groupsets


After plenty of rumours and hints dropped beforehand, the Italian component maestros Campagnolo became the first to go 12 speed for road back in April, with the extra sprocket added to their overhauled high-end Record and Super Record groupsets. We've since reviewed it fully (you can read that here) and were mightily impressed. 
Read more here

2. Rotor show off a 13 speed cassette at Eurobike

The dust had barely settled on Campag's new 12 speed groupsets when Rotor went and said "this one goes up to 13" back in July. They say it could all but solve issues of limited gearing and nasty jumps when choosing to go 1x...
Read more here

3. CeramicSpeed Driven

And if a 12 or 13 speed drivetrain wasn't enough, how about a whole new system all together with no need for a chain? CeramicSpeed unveiled their Driven prototype at Eurobike, with a 13-speed pinion drive shaft concept being used instead of derailleurs and chains that they claim provides 49% less friction with a near 99% efficient drivetrain.
Read more here

4. All hail the Grail: Canyon launch Grail gravel bike with 'hoverbar' 


Met with gasps, amazement and plenty of memes, Canyon's Grail, and more specifically its very unique double-decking hoverbar, was launched back in March. The hoverbar was designed to improve comfort and control, with the lower deck connected to the stem while the top section is specifically engineered to be compliant.  
Read more here

5. Reinventing the aero disc-specific wheel with Hunt 


In January Mat went to visit Hunt in the wind tunnel, where they were aiming to 'reinvent the wheel' with a new type of disc-specific aero option for 28mm tubeless tyres. The results traced out on the computer screens shown that all went well, as you'll read in the story linked below.  
Read more here

6. All the aero bikes

Screen Shot 2018-12-19 at 16.40.59

With too many to choose from to focus on one, let's just say it's been a big year for aero road bikes! The new Specialized Venge, Cannondale's SystemSix (their first aero road bike) and many more were launched this year, with the slippery designs stretching the UCI rules stretched to the max. Below are some links to some of the biggest aero road launches of the year.
Specialized Venge
Cannondale SystemSix
Trek Madone
BMC TimeMachine
Cervelo S5 Disc

7. All the e-road bikes


2018 was also a year for the launch of lots of bikes that literally make you go faster in the form of a motor... the rise of the e-road bike. Take a look at some of them in the round-up below. 
Read more here

8. Continental launch Grand Prix 5000 tyre with tubeless option

continental gp50005

After 14 long years, Continental finally launched the successor to the venerable GP4000 in November, the brand new GP5000. It's lighter, has more grip, lower rolling resistance and improved puncture protection, and for the very first time (and finally some might say) is being offered in a tubeless version.
Read more here

9. Shimano reveal Ultegra RX chain stabilising rear derailleur

shimano ultegra rx5.JPG

In April, Shimano released an Ultegra RX rear derailleur aimed at the ever-developing gravel and adventure market, as well as cyclocross and road. The design features what’s called Shimano Shadow RD+ technology with a chain stabilising switch to control the drivetrain over rough and off-road surfaces. It’s now available for both mechanical and Di2 (electronic) systems.
Read more here

10. reTyre: they’re tyres that zip into place! 


Perhaps not about to replace the traditional bike tyre any time soon, but it didn't stop plenty of people reading about them... the startup brand reTyre's invention can be adapted for different surfaces and conditions with the addition of a surface “skin” that zips into place. “After thee years of development, we at reTyre are now ready to launch the world's first modular tyre system where you can change the surface of your tyre in seconds using integrated zippers – adapting the bike to your needs,” says reTyre. 
Read more here

Is there anything we've missed? Let us know your favourite tech stories of 2018!

Arriving at in 2017 via 220 Triathlon Magazine, Jack dipped his toe in most jobs on the site and over at eBikeTips before being named the new editor of in 2020, much to his surprise. His cycling life began during his students days, when he cobbled together a few hundred quid off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story) and bought his first road bike - a Trek 1.1 that was quickly relegated to winter steed, before it was sadly pinched a few years later. Creatively replacing it with a Trek 1.2, Jack mostly rides this bike around local cycle paths nowadays, but when he wants to get the racer out and be competitive his preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking - the latter being another long story.  

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