Focus has taken to calling their Izalco Max, the “lightest disc road bike in the world”, and now they are making it even faster because #aeroiseverything. The aero road conversion of the Izalco Max Disc required a ground up redesign, from slippery tube shapes to integrating every bolt & cable, so what came out is an all new bike – still super light, but offering class leading aerodynamics as well.
2019 Focus Izalco Max lightweight, disc brake carbon aero road bike
More than just trying to make the fastest bike, Focus wanted the redesigned Izalco Max Disc to be lighter and more aero, but also to deliver excellent stiffness & acceleration into one good-looking bike. This is built to be your do it all race bike – easy up the hills, fast on the descents, and even faster on the flats and in the finishing sprint.
The new bike’s shaping was developed and then refined over several stages in the GST wind tunnel to balance aerodynamics with Focus’ penchant for light weight. The result is a mix of Kamm tail & round shapes and reduced frontal area, with most every frame opening tucked out-of-the-way.
In the end the aero updates deliver a sizable 6% overall system drag reduction including a rider and the same component setup vs. the previous Izalco Max. They say that translates to a 1 minute and 30 seconds savings over 50km at 200W of power output.
The new Izalco Max certainly isn’t the first to do this, but it looks like a solid iteration of what is becoming peak aero disc brake road bike.
2019 Focus Izalco Max light aero road bike – Tech Details
The new Izalco Max is a disc brake-only aero road bike to follow-up on the previous light all-rounder. Of course with the aero focus, now all cables are run entirely internally from the specially developed clamshell aero stem back to the brakes & derailleurs.
The result of the aero shaping then light carbon optimizing of 671 individual pieces of carbon is a 890g frame for the top 9-series bikes (without hardware) for a size M, and another 358g for the fork. Those little bits add another 49g, plus the weight of the axles. The slightly cheaper 8-series frame comes in at 1040g, plus 380g for its fork.
Focus maintains rider comfort (actually improving it a bit) thanks to a proprietary D-shaped seatpost and dropped seatstays that allows for some localized flex under the rider, even with the aero gains.
That carbon stem is somewhat unique in that is angled at -15° to get back down to an aggressive low position, after first rising up with the headtube to allow for smooth cable integration (and is available in 80-120mm lengths.) It also allows the use of a separate standard aero handlebar to give more rider choice, position flexibility, and ease of setup (& travel.)
Focus’s much talked about R.A.T. quick thru-axle system has been refined again for quick and easy use. The bike features 160mm rotors on flat mount disc tabs – that means you use 140mm rear calipers with 160 rotors on the bike, but the fork uses the standard flipped 140/160mm mount.
Even though it is disc only, Focus still intends this to be a lightweight race road bike, so you can fit up to 28mm tires, but nothing more. The bike does feature a tapered steerer, a pressfit BB86 bottom bracket, and is Di2 or mechanical shift ready.
2019 Focus Izalco Max light aero road bike – Geometry
The UCI approved Izalco Max Disc is said to lower its bottom bracket slightly for more stability, but otherwise carries over its road race focused (and Tour stage winning) geometry mostly unchanged. The two extreme sizes – the XXS & XXL – did get updated to deliver better, more consistent handling for those small & tall riders. The new 2019 Izalco Max Disc is available in seven frame sizes, fitting a wide range of cyclists.
2019 Focus Izalco Max light aero road bike – Pricing & Spec
The new Izalco Max Disc is available in six complete bike builds – three with each level of carbon spec. A frameset of each carbon version should be available as well. The most expensive is the 2019 Focus Izalco Max Disc 9.9 with a complete Shimano Dura-Ace R9150 Di2 groupset, a 48mm deep DT Swiss ARC 1450 tubeless ready carbon wheels, and a 9000€ price tag. The top 9 series frames also include a Red eTap & Ultegra Di2 option.
The more affordable are the 8-series, which share the same frame shaping and features, but 150g of extra carbon. The cheapest is the 2019 Focus Izalco Max Disc 8.7 opting for a new 105 R7000 and carbon rims from Alex for 3000€. In between there are Ultegra Di2 & mechanical builds, with all of the bikes getting carbon wheels and 25mm tube-type Continental tires.