Raleigh has been pretty busy in the layup department lately, introducing new carbon fiber road bikes, the RXC cyclocross bike and the Talus Carbon 29er shown above. They’ve also been working with TwinSix on a little collaboration for their latest limited edition singlespeed steel ‘cross frame, and they’ve gone and made one of the (if not the) first women’s specific cyclocross bike.
The Talus 29er Carbon will take the roost from their alloy models as top dog for 2012. It uses a Direct Connect Evolution frame design, which means the top-, down- and head tubes are molded as one piece. Other tubes are cut, mitered and carbon welded (description here).
Head past the break for more pics, details and models…
Internal cable routing, including the rear brake hose. The stays have decent, not great, clearance.
Despite a massive bottom bracket junction, the Talus Carbon sticks with a standard outboard BB.
Before the inevitable “oh this is just another stock carbon frame from China” comments start in, Raleigh’s main man Brian Fornes say all of their molds are their own. Further proof that Raleigh spent some quality time in the design department are the inlaid kevlar sections on the bottom of the downtube and chainstays. Unfortunately, the finished bike painted over them. We think they should just clearcoat it.
Rear brakes are post mount on the chainstay, another nice touch.
Another nice touch are the color-matched Avid XX two-piece rotors with the red Easton XC hubs. Brings the package together quite nicely, and all that blingy parts spec keeps the weight low:
22lbs 2oz for what I think was a Large built up with XO, Fox fork, Easton stem and carbon bar/seatpost, Geax tires and lock on grips. The Pro model will come in at $6,500 and include these sweet Easton EC90XC carbon-rimmed wheels. For real people, there’s an Elite model at $2,950.
The all-new RXC carbon fiber cyclocross bike takes over at the top for the still available RX 1.0 alloy frame.
It uses a Direct Connect Carbon Frame that evolved from their Carbon SS CX frame. It keeps the super flat top tube for shouldering of the alloy version and, thankfully, the BB30 bottom bracket, too.
Flattened rear stays should give it a bit of vertical flex.
Frame cutaways show the internal cable routing along the top tube that’s fully sealed with a carbon fiber tube. Shift cables run through the downtube and pop out just before the BB.
The top of the line Pro model gets an ENVE fork, carbon-rimmed Cole wheels and a mostly SRAM Red drivetrain with FSA cranks. MSRP is $5,000 and it comes in at 17obs 6oz. Claimed frame weight is 1050g. There’s also an Elite model that’s $2,500.
Also new for 2012 is the RX women’s specific cyclocross bike. Based on the RX 1.0, it has tweaked geometry, component spec and some nice color patterns to suit the ladies.
MSRP is $1,100.
The Furley is Raleigh’s new do anything, be anything steel bike. It’s full chromoly steel, fork included, and has a BB30 bottom bracket with a trick up it’s sleeve:
By using the larger BB standard, Raleigh was able to stuff a custom-made-by-FSA eccentric bottom bracket in there. This let them use standard dropouts at the rear. So, you can swap in a standard BB30 bottom bracket and crankset, attach a derailleur and cassette and *voila* you have a geared bike.
The custom rear dropouts have mounts for everything. It’ll handle fenders and racks easily.
Little things. MSRP is $820.
Last but not least is the latest one-off limited edition cyclocross bike. This year, Fornes said they were out of ideas so they turned the creative over to TwinSix. TwinSix said they wanted belt drive. Here’s what came of it:
The annual limited editions started with the Ranier model in 2008. We think this one’s a subtle but worthy addition to the line.
The frameset is $1,500 and includes the Easton EC90 carbon cyclocross fork. Frame is Atomic 13 SL Butted Aluminum with a standard BB and…
…new sliding dropouts that allow the driveside to open up for belt drive insertion.
The ‘cross bikes are being released first, with the Talus available by early 2012.