Bicycles

Cannondale's new gravel bike features unique rear suspension

Cannondale's new gravel bike f...
Cannondale's Topstone Carbon features a single pivot in the seat tube
Cannondale's Topstone Carbon features a single pivot in the seat tube
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Cannondale's Topstone Carbon features a single pivot in the seat tube
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Cannondale's Topstone Carbon features a single pivot in the seat tube
A closer view of the Topstone Carbon's pivot, which is at the heart of the Kingpin suspension system
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A closer view of the Topstone Carbon's pivot, which is at the heart of the Kingpin suspension system
The Topstone Carbon was announced this Thursday, and is available in five models priced from US$2,700 to $6,500
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The Topstone Carbon was announced this Thursday, and is available in five models priced from US$2,700 to $6,500
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"Gravel bikes" are becoming increasingly popular, as they combine some of the toughness of mountain bikes with the speed of road bikes. Given that they travel on dirt trails and unpaved roads, though, some suspension might be good – and that's what Cannondale's new Topstone Carbon offers, in a novel fashion.

The carbon fiber-framed bike features what is known as the Kingpin suspension system, which incorporates a single thru-axle pivot in the seat tube, at the point where the seat stays connect to it. This setup facilitates the movement of flex zones in the rear stays, seat tube, and rear section of the top tube, providing up to 30 mm of suspension travel.

As a result, bumps and road vibration are reduced (in the back, at least), while comfort, traction and control are increased. The system is additionally claimed to require no set-up and virtually no maintenance, plus it does away with the added weight and complexity of shocks, linkages and multiple pivots.

The Topstone Carbon was announced this Thursday, and is available in five models priced from US$2,700 to $6,500
The Topstone Carbon was announced this Thursday, and is available in five models priced from US$2,700 to $6,500

The Topstone Carbon was announced this Thursday, and is available in five models priced from US$2,700 to $6,500.

For other examples of rear suspension for non-mountain bikes, check out what Pinarello and Calfee have previously come up with.

Source: Cannondale via BikeRadar

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5 comments
Raoul
Long, black socks with shorts? Hahahahaha. An old doof. Nothing demonstrates a profound lack of intelligence more than someone paying $2700, or more, for a $500 bicycle.
anthony88
FFS Raoul, how an I going to feel good bout myself if I don't spend $2700 for a $500 bicycle!
amazed W1
Flexible shock absorbtion absorbs energy, by definition. All this energy comes from our muscles, via the pedals. This is why racing cyclists ride hard saddles with no springing anywhere in the whole "machine"!
Lee Bell
I give it six months at most before that seat tube breaks and you have a $3-5000 dollar piece of junk. Looks nice though all the same.
Nik
A sprung suspension allows the wheels to maintain contact with the road surface more consistently than a vehicle without. This device doesn't do that, so is of little more effect that a 30mm layer of rubber/polymer on the seat. Old bicycles in the 40's, 50's all had sprung saddles available to reduce shock transfer to the rider. Cant really see anything to get excited about in this device, especially considering the price.