Focus Mares CX Evolves – Disc Brakes and Thru Axles for 2014?

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The evolution of cyclocross machines is a funny thing. On one side you have people clamoring for newer technology like disc brakes and even thru axles, while on the other side you have quite a few who are perfectly content with their cantilever brakes and quick releases. At least for the near future it seems that most companies will be trying to placate both sides with two different versions of essentially the same bike. Case in point, Focus’ new Marex CX race bike that will be offered in two versions, the canti equipped QR bike above, and a version with disc brakes and thru axles front and rear. While the disc brakes are nothing new for Focus, the move to use thru axles front and rear is definitely something of which to take note.

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With details on the new bike slowly tricking out, Focus has a few teasers on their Facebook page that clue us into a few of the more interesting details, like the ISCG-05 mounted chain plate around the PF30 bb. Instead of relying on a small anti chain drop arm, the new Mare has the ability to run a massive chain plate which will undoubtedly curb derailments in even the worst conditions.

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Did you ever expect to see Louisville, KY on a head tube? The neat little detail of World Championship locations makes it so.

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In addition to the cantilever brakes, the Mares CX non disc keeps with tradition using standard quick releases. The disc version won’t be using just any thru axles though, as Road.CC is reporting that they are using a new axle design called RAT – Rapid Axle Technology. Using a T-pin to engage the opposite side, the system sounds a lot like the Manitou QR15 system we saw a while back which results in lightning fast wheel changes with the added security of a thru axle. For more info on the bike and a lot more photos, head over the Road.CC.

 

Comments

YoEddy - 02/07/14 - 3:38pm

gimme gimme gimme. love the built in chain watcher. price?

JoeNomad - 02/07/14 - 3:46pm

Ok, you kind of pulled a Yahoo news on us. Headlines talks about disc and thru axels and all we get are pictures of the canti bike.

ChrisC - 02/07/14 - 3:49pm

“that they are using a new axle design called RAT – Rapid Axle Technology.”

Hooray!

*ANOTHER* new “standard”…

Sevo - 02/07/14 - 4:11pm

New axel design does not mean new standard. These words have been spoken regarding many 15mm thru axel’s for various forks, still the same hubs. Which is all that matters.

Psi Squared - 02/07/14 - 5:29pm

Drawings of thru-axles are seen in pics 4 and 5 here:

http://velonews.competitor.com/2014/02/bikes-and-tech/first-look-new-focus-mares-cx-and-its-innovative-thru-axles_316278

Jimmy Deaton - 02/07/14 - 6:57pm

I don’t see the point in thru axles when there’s no suspension trying to twist things. I guess that’s next…

muf - 02/07/14 - 7:45pm

given my current disc brake cx has discs touching pads from time to time in corners, i’d say yes, thru axles will help with that.
not much to do with suspension in fact, stuff twists regardless. i think it makes perfect sense to have thru axles

greg - 02/07/14 - 8:53pm

thru axles also equal exact, repeatable wheel position, something that cant be said about QRs. now your brake pads wont rub the rotor when reinstalling the wheel.

John Spartan - 02/07/14 - 9:19pm

Wouldn’t a rear thru axle make pit wheel changes long and tedious?

mudrock - 02/07/14 - 11:50pm

a) wonder how that chain keeper works with a 1×10, b) thru axles would improve any bike. Wheel/dropout interface would be stiffer, with no flexing of axle under hard compression – what’s not to like? And no more lawyer tabs!

Ajax - 02/08/14 - 5:51am

@Jimmy Deaton

Read the Velonews article fully. Caley Fretz said that they (Velonews testers) definitely could tell a difference between thru axles and quick releases on these bikes that don’t have any suspension with the thru axle versions being significantly stiffer with no brake rotor rub on the disc brake pad with thru axles.

http://velonews.competitor.com/2014/02/bikes-and-tech/first-look-new-focus-mares-cx-and-its-innovative-thru-axles_316278

Luthar - 02/08/14 - 6:41am

Anyone concerned about the rear mech cable routing near the dropout? Seems like an unnecessary internal bend at the last section.

Joe - 02/08/14 - 9:37am

Rumor has it Niels Albert is being courted by Focus, may end up riding this bike.

Arne - 02/08/14 - 1:13pm

BKCP-Powerplus team of Niels Albert will ride on this bike next year

William - 02/08/14 - 1:37pm

Cross… Thru-Axle… Hydraulic Breaking… Di2…

AWESOME !!!!

I hope Specialized, Giant, Cannondale, Trek and other big manufactures take note as I will be buying this bike!

Mitch - 02/09/14 - 2:37pm

It needs friggin fender mounts. Even if they designed their own crappy fenders and sold them for an absorbent price because they’re the only ones that work with it, I’d love to see a CX race bike with fenders.

Swangarten - 02/12/14 - 12:47pm

@william- Giant already introduced the cross world to disc and thru axles last year.

Ham-planet - 02/23/14 - 8:52pm

@John
No. Many designs of front TAs are can be safely operated much more quickly than QRs.

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