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Five cool things coming soon from Specialized, Pirelli, MAAP and Alba Optics

Here are the best bits we're testing right now, with full reviews coming soon....

The team of reviewers have been busy getting out and about on their bikes in the mild spring conditions of late to put some pretty hot bits of kit to the test. Here are this week's highlights which include an alloy bike with some interesting welds, some cool-looking sunnies and some all-round racing tyres. 

Alba Optics Solo RST VZUM MR ALU


Do you like the look of these retromodern sunnies? The Solo has been designed for multi-day excursions and features the brand’s VZUM lens that’s designed to maintain true colours, while contrast has been increased by 6%. 

The temple tips are adjustable to four different positions to help deliver the best fit and comfort. Plus, there’s a central vent in the frame and slots along the top of the lenses which are designed to prevent fogging. Lara Dunn has been testing and her full report is on the way shortly… 

Pirelli P Zero Race 4S tyres


These are the updated version of Pirelli’s all-season tyre that are designed to provide a race feel but with enough durability to be used all year round. To help with this, the new tyres now feature the brand’s SmartEVO compound that’s said to improve grip and rolling resistance on wet and cold tarmac. 

A slightly thicker tread should help provide extra protection and is designed to increase the mileage of the tyre. Pirelli has also added a nylon TechBELT under the rubber to give greater puncture protection. Ash Quinlan has been rolling on these and his full report is coming shortly… 

MAAP Evolve Pro Air Jersey


Ultra-light mesh fabrics and micro perforations across the chest and back panels are included in this lightweight summer top layer. The longer sleeve length and SPF50+ rating are also designed to provide a good balance between comfort and sun protection. 

Environmentally friendly bluesign approved fabrics have also been used for the body of the jersey and the elastic hem band is Oeko-Tex certified. Is this eco jersey as breathable as MAAP suggests? George Hill has been finding out and his full report is coming soon… 

Specialized S-Works Power with Mimic Women’s saddle 


With Specialized’s patented Body Geometry design, this lightweight saddle is designed to ensure blood flow to sensitive arteries for all-day comfort. The saddle features Specialized’s Mimic technology that uses multilayered materials to minimise swelling in soft tissue to help prevent this sort of discomfort.

It comes with Specialized’s FACT carbon fibre shell that’s been “flex-tuned” for support and ride compliance, plus the oversized rails are also made of carbon fibre. Tass Whitby has been testing to see if this provides the support she needs for riding and her full report will be coming soon… 

Specialized Allez Sprint Comp


Specialized boldly claimed this bike is the “fastest alloy road bike in history” when it was launched about a month ago. This is thanks to the aero gains which are said to come from the updated tube shaping, Tarmac SL7 fork and seatpost and integrated cable routing.

The head tube is also the most complex that Specialized says it has ever developed. It has been cut from a single piece of alloy and then mechanically formed to create a more aero head tube shape with consistent tube wall thickness. To remove redundant material, the welds on the Allez Sprint headtube have also been moved back, away from the traditional weld points at the tube junctions. 

Liam Cahill has been riding around for the last month putting it through the “world’s first alloy superbike” through its paces. Specialized even called the Allez a carbon copy of the Tarmac SL7 and so he also took a look at seeing how it stacks up compared to one of the best superbikes out there. Now, Liam’s in-depth review of Specialized Allez will be landing on the site shortly… 

For all the latest in-depth test reports, head to our reviews section. If you need some more advice before splashing the cash, check out our buyer's guides

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