SEA OTTER CLASSIC 2010 – Chiru Bikes is a relatively new company named after the Himalayan antelope and is the brainchild of Pierre-Arnaud Le Magnan. Chiru’s line is all carbon fiber, and they’re designed specifically for endurance and adventure racing.
The full suspension Sonic mountain bike above weighed in right about 22 lbs, and they also have a 26″ hardtail called the Laktic and a currently unnamed and brand new 29er hardtail with stays designed to provide some vertical flex. Le Magnan says he’s worked with carbon fiber in sports equipment for 20 years and has been building bikes for himself for five, and that his experience combined with the fact that carbon is trailside repairable (read this interview for an explanation of that one).
More pics, specs and pricing after the jump…
While the Sonic and Laktic were built and rideable, he was most interested in promoting his new 29er, so specs on these first two bikes are minimal. The carbon layup, joints and tube shapes were all very nice.
The Sonic’s frame is high modulus carbon fiber and retails for $2,379. Complete bikes start at $4,299 with SRAM XO builds.
Chiru’s hardtail Laktik and 29er (below) both use his Carboflex seatstays to offer up to 7mm of rear axle travel with no pivots…just enough to take the harshness of trail chatter while still offering a hardtail’s efficiency. The Laktik comes in two models, regular and an “SL” version. Frames retail for $1,159 and $1,675 respectively.
The 29er has a tapered headtube, carbon-kevlar rock shield on the downtube that also hides the cable housing and shortish 440mm chainstays.
The BB30 bottom bracket area is very oversized with nicely curved tubes leading into it from all directions.
Chainstays are asymmetrical…notice how much thicker the non-drive side is. Tire clearance is 75mm to allow for some pretty wide, large volume tires.
The Carboflex seatstays are fairly flat, but wide, to smooth the ride. Frames will be available in September for $1,650, and complete bikes will start at $3,300 (SRAM X9) and $3,800 (X0).