SOC14: Raleigh’s Cylocross Line Better than Ever w/ New RXC PRO, RXS Singlespeed Belt Drive Complete, More

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (12)

Already known for their involvement in cyclocross with a number of competent race rigs, Raleigh is stepping it up for the 2014/15 cyclocross season with new mens’, womens’, and single speed offerings. Based partly on their sponsorship of the Raleigh Clement Cycling team and Raleigh’s own hodala style, the new bikes are better than ever and perfectly equipped for mud and cowbells. Now with 5 aluminum and 2 carbon models, the mens’ bikes are lighter, there is finally a complete single speed option, and women get another, better equipped model.

Ready for some racing? Get the details after the break…

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (13)

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (11) Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (14)

At the top of the range, the RXC Pro gets updated thanks to the direct feedback of pro racers like Ben Berden. Nearly every inch of the frame has been changed with one of the biggest changes being the move to a 142x12mm rear thru axle dropout. One of the biggest concerns of going to a wider rear end has always been heel clearance of the frame, yet somehow Raleigh worked some of their magic to make the 142mm frame 7mm narrower than the comparable 135mm QR frame. So it’s wider, but it’s narrower. Got it? The front also stiffens up with a new proprietary 15mm thru axle post mount fork with captured hose routing along the back.

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (15)

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (1)

Other tweaks include a new lower chain stay bridge for much better mud clearance which prevents mud from accumulating behind the front derailleur. Raleigh felt the frame was already plenty stiff, so the PF30 equipped frame is only 2% stiffer than the previous version which is probably due to the through axle. What Raleigh really wanted to improve on was the vertical compliance at the seat so they dropped the post diameter to 27.2mm and thinned out the top tube and seat stays which resulted in a claimed 37% more compliance.

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (10)

Cable routing has been slightly improved to keep things running cleaner and easier to replace while the system uses swappable housing stops for mechanical or Di2 drivetrains. The RXC and RXC Pro share the same frame, and differ only in spec with the Pro using Di2/hydraulic and the RXC using full mechanical.

Pricing is similar to the current models with the Pro retailing under $5000. Available in July – offering plenty of time to get your bike ready for the race season.

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (3)

If you’re headed to Louisville for SSCXWC 2014, Raleigh finally has a bike for you. The company has offered single speed specific frames  for a number of years, but never a complete bike. As their first full bike, the new RXS looks dialed.

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (6) Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (5)

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (4)

Raleigh’s Brian Fornes tells us that they were so excited about the TRP Hylex single speed hydraulic brakes that they wanted to offer a full build around them so they did. The RXS is a true single speed frame with no shift cable braze ons, derailleur hangers, or otherwise – just a Gates Center Track belt drive system tensioned with an pressfit eccentric bottom bracket and a split seat stay to load the belt. The wheels use Raleigh’s own 23mm Impulse rims which are of course wrapped in Clement MXP 33mm tires.  Unlike the RXC and RXC Pro, the RXS sticks with quick releases front and rear.

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (2)

The RX 1.0 and 2.0 get a new coat of paint with the sweet Gulf Racing inspired colors, and the 2.0 also gets the upgrade to the excellent TRP Spyre mechanical discs.

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (7)

Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (9) Raleigh 2015 RXC Pro RX5 single speed belt drive cross bike womens RXW RX2 RX1 (8)

Better turn out and better prize money for women means cyclocross is attracting more females to the sport, and Raleigh is responding by offering a new higher level womens’ specific build with the new RXW Comp. Using the same frame as the RXW, the comp receives and improved monocoque full carbon fork and an upgraded spec. Thanks to the American Classic Racing wheels, SRAM Force 22 group, and high end TRP cantis, the Comp is 2 pounds less than the RXW at 19 pounds, and retails for about $2,000.

Comments

Jeff - 04/16/14 - 9:21am

TYPO: The single speed is the RXS (S as in single speed) not 5.

Great coverage otherwise! Thanks

Jeff - 04/16/14 - 9:33am

EDIT: And the race in Louisville is the SSCXWC.

EATRIDEGROW - 04/16/14 - 9:39am

“TRP Hylex single speed hydraulic brakes” I copied and pasted that to be sure I wasn’t misreading… but…. eh?

Henry - 04/16/14 - 9:44am

I am sure they work good but those TRP SS hydro brakes sure look ugly….

Tyler Benedict - 04/16/14 - 10:08am

Jeff – Thanks, made the corrections.

EatRideGrow – Yep, just added the link to our coverage of those from Interbike last year. I rode them around the demo a bit and they were pretty amazing…very solid braking feel and great lever shape.
http://www.bikerumor.com/2013/09/17/ib13-new-trp-hylex-drop-bar-hydraulic-disc-brakes-for-singlespeed-road-cyclocross-bikes/

David - 04/16/14 - 10:31am

The Hylex feels so nice in the hand – the longer hoods are awesome. Very easy to adjust modulation as well.

pfs - 04/16/14 - 10:59am

What pf30 EBB are they using? problem solvers?

Ryan - 04/16/14 - 11:59am

Good call on the 142x12mm rear end. 7mm narrower than 135mm to boot!

MattTheWrench - 04/16/14 - 1:53pm

I feel like there may be issues with chainline with a road crank and 142 rear spacing. But maybe I’m over-thinking it.

Duder - 04/16/14 - 1:55pm

Force 22, AC wheels and Full carbon fork for $2K? Sounds like a winner for the ladies

Duder - 04/16/14 - 1:58pm

No bottle cage mounts on the SS is a mistake though.

Nate - 04/16/14 - 2:39pm

Any word on RXS pricing and availability? I always seem to miss out on the SSCXWC stuff.

Sirbikealot - 04/16/14 - 3:00pm

Hey Tyler or Zach any pricing on the RXS? much appreciated! Raleigh sure has turned it on the past few years

K11 - 04/16/14 - 3:17pm

too bad ben isn’t with stoemper yet.
(i get it is a business thing & i understand. And no i do not own a stoemper)

Fatso - 04/16/14 - 3:54pm

@MattTheWrench – you’re over thinking it :) Neither the freehub or crank move if you switch the axle. If the hub shell flanges were super wide it might slightly change it but rear derailleurs are adjustable so its really a non-issue.

greg - 04/17/14 - 1:03am

@Fatso,
the rear is wider because 142 puts the cassette in the same place as a 135mm QR axle. CX cranks are intended for road hubs. but then youre only talking 2.5mm alignment on a bike that naturally has longer chainstays than the typical road bike, so it’s really a non-issue. still, SRAM came out with wider-set road cranks and even front derailleur braze on adapter clamps with more offset, all to line everything up 2.5mm to the right.

Ham-planet - 04/18/14 - 3:26pm

They’re talking about increased mud clearance, but all I can see behind the BB is a large shelf labelled ‘mud’.

As an aside, attributing increased female participation in CX to ‘better turn out’ is circular reasoning.

Chris - 04/21/14 - 7:00pm

I like that they’ve gone back to aluminum for the single speed. Almost as like as carbon at about half the price. Agree that no bottle mounts is a mistake though a competent and careful mechanic could easily add them to an alloy frame.

Bridget - 05/14/14 - 2:50pm

Raleigh is making some sexy-arse CX bikes! Finally someone is making stock CX frames for us taller women!!! About damn time. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the SS belt drive. Me want!

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