The new Lauf Anywhere all-road gravel bike just debuted, but we’ve had our hands on one for a couple weeks prior to the launch. After putting a few miles on it across mixed surfaces, it’s easy to see how their more aggressive True Grit design translates to unsuspended fun when you switch in a regular fork. And, in fact, that’s exactly what they did, rebadging the True Grit as Anywhere for a different take on the go anywhere, do anything drop bar bike.
The full specs and details on the bike, fork and handlebar (all of which are available together or separately) are in our launch coverage, including pricing, geometry and build options. Here, I’ll focus on the ride quality and initial impressions of the bike.
We tested the “Weekend Warrior” build in the Black/Red colorway, size Large. I’m 6’2″ and the large hits the sweet spot for me, so kudos to Lauf for offering an XL to fit riders 6’3 and up…not many brands have a size that large, especially not smaller brands like this.
While our bike came fully built, the internal cable/hose guides are a much appreciated feature because, eventually, you will have to replace something. They also work to keep anything from rattling around inside, and sure enough, the bike rode very quietly even off road.
A threaded BSA bottom bracket should keep everyone happy. It’s placed inside a massive bottom bracket section that held steady under hard pedaling. Moving back, the shaped chainstays seem to do a good job working with thinner seatstays to keep the ride comfortable. Several of us have ridden this bike in True Grit form and really liked it, so it’s no surprise that I like this one, too.
True, the front end uses a 15mm thru axle for now (that could change in the future), but with most 29er xc wheels being a really good match for gravel and cyclocross bikes, this shouldn’t be too big a deal unless you’re really trying to swap in your high end disc brake road bike wheels…which wouldn’t make sense on a bike like this.
Little touches like their leaf logo on the bottle cage mounts, “Just Ride” on the headset cap, and their much appreciated front derailleur-mount bottle opener make the bike fun to look at and use.
If you did want to run a 2x group, the frame will fit a 50/34 chainring combo and you’d simply remove the bottle opener and mount your front derailleur there.
Tire clearance is generous with the stock Maxxis Velocita AR 700×40 tires. Lauf says the frame will fit up to 700×45 or 27.5×2.1″ tires. Our test bike came with tubes installed, which combine with the extra rubber of the bigger tires to add noticeable rotational weight. Depending on how long they let us keep the bike, we’ll play with tubeless setups and various tires to put a little more pep in its step. It’s not a slow bike, but all that rubber made accelerations less snappy and playful.
Speaking of playful, the bike seems to add a steadiness to it that I don’t recall from the True Grit. Not that that bike (which, remember, is simply this bike but with the Grit suspension fork on it) wasn’t steady in a straight line, but the Anywhere feels more stable despite the steeper head angle. Even so, it’ll still whip around a curvy bike path or sharp corner quite well.
Lauf Anywhere actual weights
Out of the box, the size Large with tubes weighed in at 18.87lb (8.56kg). That’s with a hodgepodge spec of alloy Easton EA70 stem and FSA post, Ritchey saddle and DT Swiss wheels. Removing the tubes and a couple parts swaps would easily bring that number down without breaking the bank. Their “Race” models have a claimed weight under 16.5lb.
Ready to ride with a Dura-Ace pedals, stocked saddle bag, rear blinky light, carbon bottle cage and K-Edge out-front mount, the bike came in at 20.46lb (9.28kg).
What about the Smoothie bar?
This is still one of my favorite handlebars, despite my limited time on it. The shape is unique but extremely comfortable.
The flare, sweep and shallow drop all work well to provide plenty of hand positions, all of which work.
With the Anywhere, Lauf seems to have figured out how to take their successful True Grit bike and (probably) make it even more appealing. We like the bike with the Grit leaf-spring fork, and we like it without. That you can easily swap between the two simply by adding a fork (thanks to external brake hose routing on the inside of the leg!) means you get the best of both worlds and the ability to adapt the horse to the course. If you’re looking everywhere for a gravel bike, try looking Anywhere.