Core Bike Show marks the beginning of the show season, a trade-only exhibition where we get to see the latest new bikes and products coming to a bike shop near you very soon. We treaded the rooms of a big hotel near Silverstone to bring you a roundup of brand new bikes from some of the UK’s leading brands, with a definite gravel and adventure trend on display.
Feast your eyes and let us know which is your pick of the bunch in the comment section below.
Ragley is UK mountain bike brand but a year ago it launched the Trig, a drop bar gravel bike, and for 2020 it has been updated with a new carbon fork and available in two versions.
The Trig Gravel uses a steel frame with 700c wheels and Tiagra 2x groupset and costs £1,199, while the Trig Adventure combines the same steel frame with a SRAM Apex 1x groupset with 650b wheels and costs £1,499.
Both bikes look like offering very good value for money if you want a bike that can be used for daily commuting, weekend rides, bikepacking, touring and of course gravel and adventure exploits.
There are some nice sensible details you’d expect from a UK brand, like the 68mm external threaded bottom bracket and external cable routing. There’s a full complement of rack and mudguard eyelets as well.
From another mountain bike brand comes the Digger, not a new bike but it does get a few updates.
There’s now the latest Shimano GRX groupset in a 1x guise with the dropper post actuated by the left GRX lever, and a new set of DT Swiss wheels.
Compared to the Ragley above, the Digger is designed to be a more hardcore gravel bike that can handle technical trails, with a dropper post and frame geometry designed around a short stem and wide handlebar to give handling akin to a mountain bike.
Fun is the keyword with the Digger.
You can read my review of the previous model from last year here.
Rondo has achieved a lot of success in a few short years, and its brand new MUTT ST looks another great addition to its growing range. It’s intended to occupy the space between the company’s HVRT aero road bike and RUUT gravel bike and billed as a long-distance tourer that can be used for everything from daily commuting to bikepacking.
It grabbed my attention because of the lovely blue paint finish with colour-matched mudguards that come as standard with the bike, and fit perfectly around the WTB 650bx47mm Byway and Horizon tyres the bike rolls on.
A steel frame is neatly finished with external cable routing and there are eyelets for adding a rear rack. Like its gravel bikes, the carbon fork features the TwinTip adjustable fork offset feature, which you can use to tailor the handling to your tastes or to suit different riding requirements or a change to 700c wheels which the MUTT can accommodate.
The MUTT ST costs £2,099 and you get a Shimano 105 groupset with hydraulic disc brakes, an FSA Omega 48/32t compact chainset, Fabric Scoop saddle and Rondo handlebar and stem.
There’s also the MUTT AL with an aluminium frame which we didn’t see. It costs £1,699.
Bombtrack is a brand that has been enjoying success in the UK market with its range of gravel bikes, and we liked the Hook EXT very much when we reviewed it back in 2017. For 2020 the model has a few revisions, nothing major so the underlying tech is the same.
We like the new “Matt Forest Green” colour and updated graphics, and the move to the T47 bottom bracket standard, an oversized threaded design that is starting to appear on more bikes including the latest Trek Domane.
There’s also a new carbon fork, which offers internal dynamo routing and triple cage mounts, and neat new dropouts. Cable routing, which is still external, has been tidied up. For better frame pack accommodation, the seat tube bottle cage provides two positions, regular and low. Bombtrack has also developed its cranks which this model is sporting.
Scalare is Italian for climb and is the name for British brand Tifosi’s brand new entry-level race bike. It’s designed to provide a great handling bike for those keen cyclists getting into road racing or just fast road riding, but with the added practicality of mudguard mounts.
Add mudguards and it’ll take 25mm tyres, remove the ‘guards and it’ll take 28mm tyres. This is a pre-production bike, finished bikes will have flush fitting mudguard bolts, not the bolts you see in the pictures here.
The all-carbon frame has been designed to offer good stiffness via oversized chainstays, bottom bracket and down tube, but compliance from the skinny seat stays and slender top tube.
It’ll be available with disc or rim brakes and cost from £1,499 and £1,275 respectively.
road.cc tested the Tifosi Cavazzo back in 2018 and this versatile commuter/gravel/general road bike has been updated for 2020.
The frame has lost a bit of weight, the seat tube is dropper post compatible, the removable seat stay bridge allows the fitment of mudguards and the rear rack is good for up to 27kg of load capacity.
Hot damn, this is a good looking bike! The Nemo Tig is a wide-tyred version of the company’s Nemo Tig road bike, with space for up to 40mm tyres and additional mounts for adding a bento box and third water bottle.
The frame is beautifully handmade in Italy from Columbus Spirit HSS triple-butted steel and complemented by a Columbus Futura carbon fork. Cinelli has modified the geometry to provide the increased tyre clearance and ensure a more stable ride over rough gravel.
All cables are internally routed and there are mudguard mounts if you wanted to use it for winter riding on the road and want some protection from water and mud spray. The bottom bracket is an external threaded type and the seat clamp binder is integrated into the frame.
As well as coming in six stock sizes, you can also customise the sizing if you want or need. There’s also a wide array of colours to choose from, far too much choice for me to decide which I’d opt for. Which would you choose?
The bike was also sporting the company’s new Swamp flared drop handlebar. The tops are ovalised to provide better ergonomics and comfort when cruising along on the tops.
This bike is paired with a Campagnolo Chorus 12-speed groupset with a new 48/32t “compact compact” chainset.
This Tifosi Auriga, a carbon aero frameset with a Campagnolo Chorus 12-speed mechanical groupset and the latest Deda wheels and finishing equipment.
The wheels are Deda Elementi SL48 clincher wheels shod with Schwalbe One tyres, while the contact points comprise a Deda Elementi Trentacinque 335 stem and Trentacinque Superleggera 35 handlebar.
Even Colnago is getting in on the gravel bike action, with the launch of the new G3-X. It’s a carbon frame and fork with a strong visual similarity to the company’s V3-RS aero road race bike, but with clearance for 700x42 and 650bx467 tyres, added plastic frame guards and top tube mounts.
There’s full internal cable routing, an internal seat clamp and press-fit bottom bracket, but don’t expect any mounts for racks, mudguards and other accessories. This is clearly a gravel bike in the go-faster race mould.
Interestingly the geometry takes a leaf out of the mountain bike design book. It features a longer front centre designed to be used with a short stem, so you get the right reach and fit, but benefit from faster handling when riding off-road from the shorter stem. Colnago advises a 10-20mm shorter stem.
The complete GRX equipped bike pictured here costing £4299.95.
And now for a bike we've never seen before from a brand we're not that familiar with. We spotted this fascinating looking bike on the Hope Technology stand being used to demonstrate a load of the company’s latest product.
But I wasn’t distracted by the bright orange stem, and my eyes were drawn to the frame which combines titanium tubes with moulded carbon lugs, an approach that is the exact opposite to the HB.T track bike that Hope is manufacturing for British Cycling.
Caminade is a small French bike company making mountain and road bikes out of steel and titanium out of its own workshop, but this new AllRoad Titanium a bold and ambitious attempt to do something quite a bit different.
It reckons the bike offers all the vibration damping comfort qualities of titanium tubes with the stiffness from the carbon joints for a “lively, efficient ride”. It also enables the company to offer bespoke frames so made-to-measure requests can be accommodated.
The company also says the objective with this bike is to make owning a titanium frame affordable. The bikes start at €2, 790 with a Sram Apex 1 groupset and Mavic AllRoad Disc UST wheels, with clearance for 700x40mm or 650x47mm wheels and tyre.
You can spec various optional extras including an integrated seatpost, eyelets for front and rear racks, a third bottle cage mount and front and rear dynamo lights. Like what you see? You can find out more here
Not the newest bike, it was launched last summer and you’ll surely have read my first ride report from the launch event, but worth including here because it’s still a fresh new model. It’s a carbon fibre version of the regular alloy Topstone with the key feature being the Kingpin rear suspension, a leaf spring design using flex in the carbon rear triangle and seat stays attached to the seat tube via a pair of bearings to provide up to a claimed 30mm of rear wheel travel.
Too much gravel for you? We'll end this article with this, the very bold Merida Reacto in new Bahrain-McLaren team colours. It's the first time I've clapped eyes on the new team bike, and I must admit there's a part of me that would totally ride this bike. Agree?
David worked on the road.cc tech team from 2012-2020. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds, and you can now find him over on his own YouTube channel David Arthur - Just Ride Bikes.