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by Dave Rome
January 17, 2018
Photography by David Rome
WOMEN'S CYCLING BROUGHT TO YOU BY ORBEA
At last week’s Santos Women’s Tour Down Under, the US-based Cylance Pro Cycling team had their Cannondale SuperSix Evo HiMods fitted with a range of unique and prototype components. Most notably, the team was seen rolling on a production-looking version of the FSA K-Force WE wireless groupset.
FSA’s K-Force WE is a groupset we last covered at Eurobike 2017, but one that is now sporting a more polished look compared to what we saw just a few months ago. This includes a textured and tighter-fitting hood design, along with textured and more integrated buttons within the brake lever. The rocker button on each is textured in a way that clearly differentiates the up and down levers by touch.
The front derailleur is looking a little more stylish and finished too, with rounded and shorter linkages. The rear derailleur doesn’t look too different, with its production-looking graphic and profile.
The full bike, belonging to Italian Marta Tagliaferro.
We’ve covered the function and design of the FSA groupset previously, with the key features being wireless shifters that speak with the front derailleur (which acts as the control centre). From there, the front and rear derailleurs, along with a rechargeable battery, are all wired together within the frame.
It’s a clever concept, one that allows clean and wire-free routing at the bars. After all, it’s at the bars that running a wire is typically messiest.
The Cylance mechanic admitted the team get its hands on some rather unique tech to test, given that gear is being raced consistently, but at a tier down from the more visible WorldTour. Pictured are race-ready parts, but still in prototype phase.
We weren’t told too much more, other than that the product works well once past the initial setup.
Update: We’ve since received an official update of the FSA WE groupset from Cameron Simpson, Sales Operations Manager at FSA USA.
“We are looking forward to delivering the WE drivetrain in Spring with a pricepoint of (US)$2765 for the entire groupset. We have been diligently testing and sampling the pre-production units with our pro teams, athletes, and trusted product testers. We are also in the last stages of FCC testing and all has gone smoothly. Only the lack of concern for timeline on FCC’s end is less then appreciated! The field tests that we are currently running are the last and final step before shipping. WE are ready!”
“The graphics and design of the drivetrain featured in Australia are not the most updated designs. The specs and materials are otherwise the same.”
In addition to the FSA group, the team is using the ultra-low-cost Watteam PowerBeat Dual powermeter, something that retails for US$399. In the case of Cylance, it sits between Cannondale SI cranks and Speedplay pedals. The powermeter was synced with a Lezyne Super GPS head unit.
This bike, ridden by Italian Marta Tagliaferro, was just one of 10 women’s bikes we’ve shot at the Tour Down Under so far. Expect a feature that complements our bikes of the 2018 men’s WorldTour soon.