From the Canadian designers and engineers at Argon 18 comes a new track racing machine for another nation of cyclists. Working with the Danish Track Cycling Team, Argon 18 has just announced the completely overhauled Electron Pro that will be the official bike of the Danes for the upcoming Rio Olympics. The bike is a giant step up for Argon in the aero realm, and a ground-up redesign of their top track platform, showing almost no similarities to their current bike other than two wheels. The bike that Denmark will be riding this August to try to expand on their single Gold medal track win from 2012 shows improvements even to Argon’s aero road and tri bikes that may have implications on the road as well…
Argon calls the Electron Pro the ideal blend of aerodynamics and stiffness, with the goal of delivering the fastest and the strongest track bike possible to help the Danish riders as they fight for Gold. The new track bike blends some of the looks and aero features of Argon’s E-119 tri bike, but takes them one step further for the unique environment of velodrome racing. The Electron Pro takes integration to the front with a taller overall frame in order to get that smooth line across the top. Overall the tubing shapes are not as wide or deep as those of the tri bike, also suggesting that Argon may have been able to improve stiffness through their carbon layup, while still being able to minimizes the bike’s frontal area through the use of thinner profiles.
London 2012 Omnium Gold medalist Lasse Norman Hansen said of the new ride that “after only two laps on the test bike, I knew that this was the best track bike I had ever ridden.” While we don’t usually give too much weight to testimonials in marketing materials, coming from an actual Olympic Gold medal winner training for his next medal event, it does sound promising.
Argon has been happy with their partnership with the Danish team. With the team’s track pedigree, it has enabled Argon to mine that expertise and really step up their track bike game.
Argon and the Danes developed the bike together from hundreds of FEA and CFD analyses to simulate stiffness and aerodynamics into real-world testing of the prototype bikes on the boards. They claim the end result is a bike that is faster and stiffer than either party had ever worked with on the track. The new bike uses the same sliding rail seat clamp at the E-119 to allow for a lot of fit flexibility. It also gets similar dropped seatstays and a deep wheel cutout for the track-short chainstays.
The resulting Electron Pro the frame focuses stiffness in key areas like the headtube, bottom bracket, chainstays, and rear fork-ends that have been built ultra-stiff to maximize power transfer and result in unmatched handling at high speeds. It also gets a one-piece handlebar that is directly-mounted straight onto the top of the extended fork for exceptional steering stiffness. The handlebar is called Zero-Wake, as it smoothly integrates into the toptube to cut drag across the top of the bike, and also flows into the downtube. Again flexibility and integration come together in the modular basebar with dropped grips, but the use of adjustable extensions and arm rests that allow any rider position to be properly fit.
The fork blades themselves were also shaped to closely follow the profile of the disc front wheels chosen by the team. Optimizing air flow across the front wheel, the fork uses a fairly consistent aerofoil shape straight down to the dropouts.
The bike is exclusive to the Danish team heading into the Olympics, but we expect it to take the place of Argon’s current track bike later in the year.