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UCI To Change Aerodynamic Limits; Specialized’s Vision on Future Bikes

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MORGAN HILL, USA – Is this how road bikes will look like in a couple of years now discussions have started with the UCI on changing the 3:1 rule that limits the aerodynamics of road bikes?

UCI To Change Aerodynamic Limits; Specialized’s Vision on Future Bikes
Concept flywheel e-roadbike developed by Specialized’s Creative Director, Robert Egger. – Photo Specialized

For many product designers the current UCI’s technical regulations are seen as too limiting on future developments of bicycles. One of them is Specialized’s Creative Director, Robert Egger. His latest off-spring is the fUCI.

“I ignored the basics of the UCI’s technical regulations to imagine the potential evolution of a bicycle. No rules. No restrictions. Just a teaser for the future,” says Robert Egger on www.specialized.com. “There’s certainly no need to comply with regulations to get that speed you are looking for.”

UCI limitations

Egger’s idea was to design a bike for ‘someone who really just wants to go fast on a road bike without taking care of the UCI limitations’.

The result is the fUCI, with 33.3-inch rear wheel, which creates a flywheel effect, a bottom bracket electric motor for turbo support, curved seat stays to provide some suspension and create comfort and a small aerodynamically shaped truck at the rear.

“The whole thing was really just an exercise in working outside of the UCI box,” says Robert Egger. “I think designers should be free to wander the glorious ‘what if’ landscape, joyfully unfettered by limits imposed on imagination.”

The UCI box

As said the new working group is also installed for making proposals to changing ‘the UCI box’; better said UCI’s 3:1 rule that limits the aerodynamics of a road bike. The UCI rule stipulates that every part of a UCI approved bike must be no more than three times deeper than its wind-facing aspect. With that excessive aerodynamic constructions are ruled out.

The Aerodynamics and Weight Limitation Working Group is to start-up discussions with the UCI. The governing body for worldwide bike racing has already reacted with saying that it is open for discussion.

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