Last year the Merckx Bicycles brand was bought up by fellow Belgian bike brand Ridley to form their new Belgian Bicycle Factory group, sharing development and production resources. Part of that looks to be a modern overhaul of the Merckx look, focusing on the road and a more classic feel and returning to the full Eddy Merckx brand on the bikes. For 2019 the bike changes are mostly cosmetic, besides the introduction of the new Lavaredo 68 endurance road bike.
2019 Eddy Merckx Lavaredo 68 endurance road bike
The Lavaredo 68 had already been in development with the Ridley purchase of the brand took place, and before the bike debuted it had a chance to get some styling updates. The new disc brake carbon endurance road bike gets slightly less aggressive tube shaping than much of the 2018 Merckx road line.
It still gets features like 12mm thru-axles, and full internal cable routing, but even those get simplified a bit. But of course the biggest update for 2019 is the move towards a more classic aesthetic. Gone is the big, shiny Merckx on the downtube, instead replaced with a subtle two-tone paint scheme, the Cannibal’s full name in small lettering on the downtube, and even a small signature just behind the headset.
2019 Eddy Merckx Strasbourg 71 gravel road bike
That aesthetic caries over throughout the entire rebranded lineup for 2019. The carbon Strasbourg 71 gravel bike that we rode last year is another to get the new look.
The Strasbourg 71 already had a more subtle finish than the more racy road bikes, but now the adaptable 1x or 2x gravel bike joins what looks to be a more unified lineup.
2019 Eddy Merckx San Remo 76
2019 Eddy Merckx EM 525 Disc
The all-around disc brake stage racer, the EM 525 Disc, gets the same subtle graphics update while keeping its divisive, but distinct tube shaping. Word is that the full road line is getting a design refresh as part of the Belgian Cycling Factory purchase of the Eddy Merckx Bicycles brand. So we expect a more thorough overhaul of the line sometime next year.
Ridley Noah Fast – aero road bike in rim or disc brake versions
Ridley debuted their updated aero road bike – the all-new Noah Fast – leading up to the Tour de France, but we got a chance to have a closer look, including its unique F-Surface grooves to improve airflow over the bike.
The front end of either bike is super clean, with an integrated bar+stem combo, F-Surface grooves neatly applied from stem & steerer spacer stack, down across the headtube, and onto the fork legs. And on this disc brake version, every bit of cabling & housing is fully routed internally, away from the wind.
Down at the fork tips, sets of small extended tabs dubbed F-Wings, extend back from the dropout, claiming to reduce turbulence off of the hub, no matter with disc brakes & thru-axles or rim brakes & QRs.