Lapierre Races into 2016 with New Aircode SL and Xelius SL Road Bikes

Lapierrer 2016 road bikes photo credit Jean Luc Armand (15)

All photos c. Jean Luc Armand

Spanning three generations of the Lapierre family, Lapierre Bicycles has come a long way since their humble beginnings in 1946. Started by Gaston Lapierre more than half a century ago, the company now has bikes and race teams for anything from DH to Pro Tour Road cycling. Going on their 14th year partnering with the FDJ Pro Race team, Lapierre continues to develop new race bikes for the roads of epic races like the Tour de France.

First spinning their legs with the prototype LP 0.9C at the 2002 Tour, the latest additions to the Lapierre road line up have greatly evolved. Building on their Aircode aero road and Xelius race bikes, the new Aircode SL cuts weight while the Xelius SL gets an entirely new frame that makes it lighter and more comfortable as well…

Lapierre Aircode SL

Lapierre Aircode SL

Lapierrer 2016 road bikes photo credit Jean Luc Armand (5)

Just introduced last year, Lapierrer was very happy with its debut – especially the ride by Thibaut Pinot who piloted the bike to a third place finish in the Tour. Not ones to rest on their success, Lapierre’s engineers apparently thought the aero road bike could be mad lighter without sacrificing performance. As a result of a new carbon layup with fewer plies in the seat tube and head tube, the frame is 90g lighter while the fork loses an additional 20g.

The Aircode SL still keeps the same Kamm-tail design for aerodynamics, Lapierre’s Power Box carbon construction, and a blend of 24, 30, and 40T carbon to provide the same level of stiffness and wind cheating abilities. Using the same geometry of the Xelius EFI with an additional large size, the Aircode SL will be sold in the top of the line SL700(top), the SL600 FDJ(above), and the SL500.

Lapierrer 2016 road bikes photo credit Jean Luc Armand (4)

Built with an entirely new frame, the Xelius SL is meant to be a light weight, all purpose race machine. With all of the tubes optimized for the lightest weight, the frame also makes use of a seat stay design that bypasses the seat tube to instead connect to the top tube. The resulting seat tube cluster which seems extremely similar to Volagi’s patented LBFS (Long Bow Flex Stay) design supposedly reduces the weight of the frame while adding additional compliance. Also utilizing the Lapierre Power Box carbon methodology, the lower half of the bike is built to be extremely efficient while the upper half is built to be compliant. Other frame changes include an improved location for the Di2 battery in the downtube for a lower center of gravity, and shorter 405mm chainstays.

Again offered in the SL700, SL600 FDJ, and SL500, the SL700 is shown above.

Lapierre Pulsium 700

Lapierre Pulsium 700

Lapierre Pulsium FDJ

Lapierre Pulsium FDJ

Also introduced last year, Lapierre continues with their Pulsium frame which is destined for the cobbles. Using their SAT (Shock Absorption Technology) which places an elastomer ring between the top tube and the seat tube as well as specific carbon layups, the Pulsium is Lapierre’s answer to the rebirth of road “softtail” designs.

Created with endurance geometry, clearance for 32mm tires, and a fork designed to smooth out the ride in tandem with the seat stays, the Pulsium is built to go fast over the bumps. Sold in three standard models including the 700 and FDJ models shown above, there are also two models in Lapierre’s Ultimate Custom Program, all with compact 11-speed Shimano drivetrains, Shimano brakes, Mavic or Shimano wheels, a Zipp cockpit, and Fizik saddles. For pricing and availability check with your local Lapierre dealer.

lapierrebicycles.com

 

 

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Sardinien
Sardinien
7 years ago

(deleted)

Francois
Francois
7 years ago

I personally think the Aircode SL looks great in blue.
It’s just too bad the bike was crashed before the pictures were taken (broken seat collar, wear on side of saddle and on the handlebar tape, probably from the bike falling on the drive side), it doesn’t look very professional…

Greg
Greg
7 years ago

The French haven’t surrendered to disc brakes yet.

Dave
Dave
7 years ago

@Sardinien, clearly not a Lapierre fan I see. The “9-sticker” version is the team bike which of course is done up like NASCAR. The non-team version of the Pulsium is definitely more subdued.

@Francois… good eye!

altobici
altobici
7 years ago

Open your eyes Sardinien – I’ve just bought an Aircode Ultimate FDJ, and it rides better than the Pinarellos I have, at half the price! Quality and intelligent design are no longer the reserve of the Italians.

Antoine
Antoine
7 years ago

Zey ar beautifule

Drew Maito
Drew Maito
7 years ago

Xelius: GT Grade? Volagi Liscio? Not exact, obviously, but somewhat of a hybrid of the two, maybe, with rim calipers instead of discs. . .

Sardinien
Sardinien
7 years ago

@Altobici
I’m italian and I would never ever buy an italian bike. Here in Italy only 60 and plus year old nostalgic “we are italians,we are the best” riders buy Pinarello or Colnago,everyone else buy the usual american brands and carry along happy. I yet have to see someone ride a Lapierre road bike,they tried to enter the market aggressively 5 years ago but their ever cracking frames on their mountainbikes busted their reputation in a matter of 2 years,let alone their crazy prices. Fancy an “European” frame ? Get a Canyon ( or a Cube,or a Rose,or a Radon). Like in most of other industrial fields italians and europeans lost their touch with passion,will and research many many years ago,crunched by communists unions and an arrogant ” we know it all” attitude.

MaraudingWalrus
MaraudingWalrus
7 years ago

I like the line about how the Aircode “could be mad lighter without sacrificing performance.”