House bound: Jonathon Harker headed over to the luxurious Rudding Park hotel set in the picturesque, if slightly misty, Yorkshire countryside to see what Zyro’s Open House offered up...


Now in its eighth year at Rudding Park, Zyro’s Open House dealer event provided the chance to get up close to manufacturers, exchange ideas and take a look at the latest product. Boasting innovative tech, the odd Eurobike design award winner or two and best-sellers, there was plenty to see.

German industry stalwart Abus has a wealth of new locks, helmets and bags. First up the limited edition and Lyria female-specific bag range hits an area not blessed with a wide range of product. The five-litre Handlebar Bag and 12 litre Purse both feature reflective floral décor and sport retractable handles for added security during rides. The Urban Exclusive office bags aped suitcases for a business-like look. Trendy colours are found in the Dryve range of urban luggage. The Dryve panniers also include an integrated steel cable loop for extra security.

Abus’ helmet range saw new lines including the new Smiley for kids, the reflective red Urban-I, the Scraper Urban and Win-R all-rounder helmet, all targeting the urban and commuter markets. The pinnacle of the helmet range is the new lightweight Tec-Tical performance helmet, at only 250g with 23 vents.

The Combination Chain lock is available in new colours to take advantage of the lifestyle side of the market. The firm also focused on the popularity of folding locks, highlighting the Bordo Granit X-Plus – a perfect partner for Dahon.

Own-brand Altura is, Zyro director Simon Ellison tells BikeBiz, itself a result of the feedback from dealers via Open House event over the years.

The welded waterproof Night Vision 20 Pannier is a new addition, with reflective trims raising visibility for cyclists. Priced at £49.99, the Night Vision comes in grey or orange. The new Fuse Panniers provide a premium option, while the range has also expanded with new briefcase panniers.

Product labelling has also been refreshed with images explaining products to customers. Altura’s new clothing lines include the Apex Baggy Shorts are among the new lines on show. Altura promises that the MTB-focused baggies are engineered to stand up to all-day abuse with stretchy crotch and rear panels for comfort, all for £79.99. The Apex is joined by the Quantum X – for men and women – and the Flexx – a key baggy for the brand. The Flexx comes with and without a liner short, and the full stretch outer fabric is ideal for longer rides.

The handy zip on/off sleeves of the Transformer Windproof made it a highly versatile garment, transforming from long sleeve to short in a few moves. Finally, the broad new Ergofit premium road range featured, with two levels of Bibs at £79 and £99, Jersey and Mitts.

After two years with Zyro, Ashima tells BikeBiz that it aims to take the brake market by the scruff of the neck and become a market leader in the UK. Ashima had new innovations and product to show at Open House, including the PCB, or Pancake Brake System. This pistonless hydraulic brake system is a world first, extremely light, and set to arrive in the spring. Ashima has also launched a new cable range available to dealers in the spring. Split into three levels – Reaction, Action Plus and Action – the former at the premium end of the range, while the mid Action Plus range is comparable to the higher specced versions of competitors, according to Ashima.

2010 brings new computers and lights from the CatEye brand. The growing commuting sector has spawned the handily named Commuter Computer, including a big screen and an ETA function, helping workers plan their journey better, and CO2 offset info. Commuters can compare their rides and with no other rival commuter product on the market, the product generated much interest. The device also ties in with CatEye’s free-to-use site, where users can measure and log the amount of CO2 and money they’ve saved via cycling.

Also new, the Adventure Wireless combines a 14-feature computer with an Altimeter. CatEye’s extensive light ranges have been refreshed, too with the arrival of Orbit lights – requiring no tools to install, the wheel lights up cyclist visibility from the side – addressing the high number of side impacts. There were also previews of new high-end lighting due for autumn 2010.

Not a lot of people know this, but Genuine Innovations manufactures equipment used in the medical world, where accuracy really is a matter of life and death. The firm makes its cycle product ranges on the same production line, including the new Air Chuck Elite – an uber light mini inflator that weighs a mere 17g – 25 per cent less than its predecessor.

Also up from GI is the new Cartridge Cross – a clever way to carry four cartridges on the go for £14.99, and the Cartridge Cover for shielding hands and fingers from a cold Co2 cartridge. Also new is the Mountain Pipe – a CNC machined all-alloy hand pump with a CO2 inflator built in.

New to Zyro, the famous folding bike brand was on hand at Open House for dealers to get to know the range. The Mu Uno is one of the key lines from Dahon and was revealed as one of the most successful product launches last year due to high demand. Priced at £479.99, the Mu Uno folds in a less than ten seconds.

2010 will bring some saucy new tech from Dahon, including the IOS XL – pitched as the ultimate urban bicycle. Boasting Shimano Alfine hub and hybraulic disc brakes, the IOS XL includes the Dahon Valo light and Biologic ReCharge – a nifty device that stores energy from the dynamo hub and charges any USB device – including the iPhone –while the cyclist rides. The Biologic accessories will also form part of the Dahon offering, including the innovative space (and weight) saving Postpump Seatpost and much-talked-about Bike Mount for the iPhone.

Another headline grabber comes in the form of the Boost – a light, compact electric bike with sophisticated Torque sensors that add power in proportion to the force applied to the pedals. All of this completes a 27 model line-up to cater for all cyclists’ needs, with the inclusion of 16, 20, 24, 26-inch and 700c wheel bikes that fold in the range.

Fenwick’s Total Professional Bike Care System was presented as a complete solution for any rider and the trade, with a range now covering cleaning, degreasing, lubricating and assembly products for at home or in the workshop.

Among the new lines for Fenwick’s are the Complex Synthetic Grease and Copper Slip Tubs. The former is a synthetic, water resistant, multipurpose PTFE assembly grease for wet-duty performance, while the latter – an anti-seize compound – protects metals from corrosion, aiding sealing and assembly.

Fenwick’s also launched its Disc Brake Cleaner and Dry Degreaser, Frame and Shock Finishing Spray and its Professional Lubricant Spray, the latter with twice as much lubricant content as the nearest competitor. The firm’s FS Foaming Degreaser is sprayed directly onto the drive train and chainrings, left to do its work, agitated with a cloth and then rinsed off with water for a contaminent-free finish. The firm also has bespoke POS available.

Panaracer is set to give the MTB market extra focus, partly through links with Cedric Gracia, who has input his technical knowledge into the range as well as providing eye-catching marketing. They have developed a brand new rubber Combo Compound used across the CG range. The soft-on-the-inside compound helps knobs grip and is tougher on the outside for durability and speed. The range is Zyro’s first licensed product.

The firm is also rolling out new packaging, letting customers get their mitts on the tyre before they buy. The firm says that 2010 will bring a media blitz, the likes of which it hasn’t taken part in for two decades.

The well-received line will be joined by a further six tyres, set to be unveiled at Eurobike time. Panaracer also launched a white version of the Pasela TG, sidewall colours to the EVO3 Road Range, Minits 20-inch Fast Tyre for Dahon and great pricing.

The growing commuter sector has led to a need to transport items by bike, and the growing Rixen Kaul line-up reflects that, with a classic Wicker Basket on offer alongside the Shopper, Shopper Plus and Mesh Baskets.

A host of further products are set to arrive in the UK soon. Notably, the R&K range includes some potential tie-ins with Dahon, including the new Caddy fitting bracket for folders.

The best-selling Energisebars now come in two new flavours – Banana Punch and Cherry Cranberry Twister. Both boast C2Max carb formulation and use real fruit – keeping the Powerbar commitment to not using artificial colours, flavourings or preservatives in its products.

Also new, the Natural Energy range provides at least 96 per cent natural ingredients with complex carbs for slow digesting and long lasting energy. In strawberry/cranberry, cacao crunch (chocolate chips) and sweet ‘n’ salty seeds and pretzels, which is said to be the first savoury bar of its kind.

The brand will enjoy visibility at this year’s Tour de France in its role as official Energy Bar, Sports Beverage and Gel partner. It will be present at each stage winner presentation.

Zyro’s own Tortec includes a tweaked and improved upon range, and is currently one of the fastest growing brands in the Zyro portfolio. Tweaks include new rack designs that accommodate increasingly compact frames. The Velocity Rear Rack boasts a sleek and compact design that keeps panniers close to the wheel for better cornering. New product the Competition Bottle Cage is set to provide a secure hold and no-rattle fit.

Other new racks include the Transalp rack for bikes with disc brakes, along with the new Explorer seatpost mounted rack. Tortec’s expanding range also includes saddles – with comfort saddles at entry to mid price points on offer for dealers. Bodyfit is heading into Tortec for the first time this year.

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