RP Designs, manufacturer of Smart-Cockpits, has released “The Ultimate” MTB handlebar; yours for only $790 USD. Clearly, this is no ordinary handlebar. Like RP Designs’ Smart-Cockpits that can be found on the futuristic-looking bikes of sister-brand Fusion Bikes, the MTB Smart-Cockpit neatly integrates an on-board computer with Apple Car Play functionality into the handlebar.
RP Designs MTB Smart-Cockpit
RP Designs say that with their Smart-Cockpit solutions, you can take any bike and make it smart. With the aftermarket release of the MTB Super Light Edition, you can make your mountain bike smart if willing to part with $790 USD. That’s ridiculous money for a handlebar, right? But is it ridiculous money for a carbon fiber handlebar with an integrated computer boasting Apple Car Play functionality? Arguably, less so.
The Smart-Cockpit is designed to replace your cycle computer, offering up more benefits and features than even the highest-end offerings currently on the market. Pre-loaded onto the computer is RP Designs proprietary software, CyTech, which is powered by Strava. By pairing your iPhone to the Smart-Cockpit via your Strava account, you can enable Apple Carplay-like features to be viewed directly from the middle of your handlebar on a 5″ screen. That’s all the Apps you could ever want to use on a ride; Strava (the CyTech custom landscape version thereof), Trailforks, Komoot, Google Maps, Spotify, WhatsApp… you get the point. And it’s not just Apple; the same is available for Android Auto Technology, too.
The computer is bolted to the bar via four screws on the underside, each of which is covered by a silicone cap. RP Designs tells us the device should only be removed in the event of a warranty claim. There is a charging port built into the side of the bar for charging the device via the USB Type-C cable supplied.
Without the computer, the MTB Bar composed of a 3K carbon weave, weighs a claimed 378g. The presence of the computer bumps that up to a claimed 608g. Not so light, after all. It is 780mm wide (a 760mm option is on the way), has a 40mm “stem”, a 10mm rise, an 8° back-sweep and a 5° up-sweep.
Proprietor, Rudi Pienaar, aims this integrated cockpit at XC riders who train regularly or for long periods, ride to explore, or ride for work. There’s no arguing that the 5″ screen should make it much easier for the tired rider to see the information they need at a quick glance, something that will surely appeal to those who struggle to see info on the much smaller screen of a Garmin, Wahoo, or the like.
The RP Designs Smart-Cockpits are to be rolled out on Fusion Bikes models in 2023, and potentially on some of Tony Ellsworth’s bikes too. Indeed, Rudi is the CEO of Ellsworth Bikes, with RP Designs having acquired the brand early last year. Here, we see the MTB Smart-Cockpit adorning the latest Ellsworth Truth XC Bike. Pre-orders for that bike, and the RP Designs MTB Smart-Cockpit, are open now.