Thanks to continuing advances in LED and lithium battery technology,
it's now not uncommon to see mountain bike headlights putting out 3,000
lumens or more. Most of these high-intensity lights incorporate two or
three bulbs, however, requiring a separate battery pack to power them.
With this in mind, we were intrigued when we heard that Light &
Motion had declared its self-contained new Urban 850 Trail FC to be "the
most powerful single-LED bike light that exists." We gave it a try and
liked what it has to offer ... even if its claim may be a little hard to
Although suspension forks and rear shocks have certainly revolutionized
the field of mountain biking, many riders still don't know how to set
them up properly. This means that parameters such as preload, rebound
and compression tend to get left at their factory settings, resulting in
sub-optimal performance. That's why Australian startup Dusty Dynamics
has created the ShockWiz – it's an app-assisted device that advises
users on tuning their air-sprung suspension systems.
Tubeless mountain bike tires definitely have their good points, such as
lower weight, less flats and decreased rolling resistance. In order to
seat the things securely on the rim, however, it's often necessary to
use a compressor or a CO2 cartridge to deliver a high-pressure shot of
air. That said, there's now another option, in the form of the Airshot.
Usually when we hear about high-end automakers dabbling in bicycle design, the result is a road bike – recent examples have included bikes made in collaboration with companies such as McLaren
, Aston Martin
. Joining the likes of Porsche
, however, Mercedes‑AMG has decided to go with a mountain bike. The sports car and performance brand within Mercedes-Benz recently joined forces with German bicycle manufacturer Rotwild, to create the limited-edition Rotwild GT S.
Much like the auto market saw the rise of the supercar, the electric bicycle market is seeing the rise of the super e-bike. The super e-bike is far removed from the average electric bicycle and is essentially a motorcycle hiding inside a lighter, simpler bicycle body. The new Trefecta DRT bike doesn't even hide it that well as its military-spec aluminum frame is as much motorcycle as bicycle. That's okay, because this folding super e-bike aims to "create the game, not change it."
Tubeless tires have become pretty much standard on higher-end mountain bikes, thanks partly to the fact that they're able to self-seal small punctures. When it comes to larger holes, however, they need a little help. That's why award-winning South African competitive cyclist Stefan Sahm created the Sahmurai Sword.
Stephen Romanin is the outdoors type. He loves mountain biking, skiing, and taking motorcycles off the beaten track – pursuits that put him on a mission to create a lightweight heated garment that can keep the cold at bay without interfering with the activity at hand. The result is the Avade heated jersey. We took it into the wild to see how it performs.
If you regularly take off into the hinterlands on a motorbike, mountain bike or horse, there are no doubt times when you wonder, "What happens if I crash and hurt myself, and no one knows where I am?". You might be able to phone for help, although that wouldn't be the case if you were knocked unconscious. That's why British telecommunications engineer David Coleman developed the Ridersmate. If you fall off your bike/horse, it automatically sends a text message to let other people know that something's amiss.
Now that much of the Northern Hemisphere is well within the icy clutches of winter, many mountain bikers have turned to riding indoors on rollers or trainers. While that may help them to keep fit, it's still far
less fun or interesting than riding outdoors on actual trails. Norwegian startup Activetainment hopes to close that gap a little, however, with its interactive ebove B/01 bike. The trainer moves beneath the rider and becomes easier or more difficult to pedal, in response to the terrain of animated trails on an accompanying tablet.
Tubeless tires are pretty much standard on higher-end mountain bikes now, due to their lower weight and rolling resistance, along with their ability to contain sealant. However, they do have one drawback – you need to use a CO2 cartridge or an air compressor to put the things on. Bontrager has set out to change that, with its TLR Flash Charger pump.