Zipp is sometimes very good at keeping secrets (like the Zipp 60)…when they want to be. Today’s launch from Zipp probably surprises nobody since both the 404 FireCrest Clincher in 650c and the new Vuka Stealth integrated aerobarproducts appeared in Kona back in the Fall. Let’s be honest, though: giving us a taste of new Zipp carbon parts is never a bad thing and everyone will be talking about these products for a while to come
404 FireCrest 650c
For those of you who need smaller setups, our heart goes out to you. The dearth of bikes and wheels offered to fit your morphology must be incredibly difficult to deal with, and to produce a complete setup that can be as competitive as you are has got to be tough. Fortunately, at least one selection got easier for you, today: your wheels. With the 404 FireCrest 650c offering, you now get to enjoy all the benefits of the FireCrest technological enhancements with the ease of clinchers in the size you need. This is a no-brainer for anyone who rides 650c – these are the wheels to get. If you need any better indicator of the performance of these new wheels, look no further than Rinny at Kona who trusted them for her attempt at the 2012 Ironman World Championship.
Vuka Stealth Integrated Aerobars
Claiming nearly two thousand “fit options” (1920, to be precise), Zipp believes the Vuka Stealth is the cockpit for anyone with a standard 1 1/8” steerer tube on their race bike. There are three stem lengths available, Short, Medium and Long, with 10mm additional length available on each with a spacer, and the bars are stack height adjustable up to 50mm with risers. The extensions allow for the pads to be set at a relatively narrow 140mm to an easy-as-you-please 270mm width, with enough choice between those two numbers to accommodate any rider’s elbow position. Further, these can be ordered with any extension type Zipp offers ( Ski-tip, Race, and Race Vuka Shift), which lets you make the Stealth into whatever you need it to be. Full internal routing for your cables will keep the bar clean to the wind and a svelte 820g won’t make the scales groan on weigh-in. The price, at $1070 USD, is certainly enough to make a rider think very carefully about this choice before purchase, but there are few setups with this much customization and attention to aerodynamics, especially considering that the Vuka Stealth is UCI legal for TT, which is becoming harder to find in high-end setups. Zipp is saying general availability in March.