It seems that lately one of the main arguments for offset frame designs on fat bikes is the ability to run IG (internal gear) hubs. That makes a lot of sense considering the hubs have all been limited to 135mm widths, though it looks like that won’t be the case for long. Spotted by Cycle Monkey (who happen to be the sole North American Service Partners and experts when it comes to the Rohloff Speedhub 500/14), this 170mm prototype Rohloff was on display at the Bespoked UK Bike Show. The wider spacing would allow symmetric wheel builds for fat bikes and even other bikes that want to take advantage of the wider rear end for increased wheel stiffness.
Details are still very limited, but perhaps even more exciting than the fact that a 170mm option will exist is the fact that there is a rumor that it will be available as a retrofit option for current Speedhub Owners! If you’ve ever priced out a Speedhub, you know why this is exciting news. It is also exciting news for Rohloff themselves, as it would mark one of the major design changes in years.
More when we have it.