Lotus Engineering, together with Hope Technology, have unveiled an innovative new track bike designed to help the Great Britain Cycling Team win medals at next summer’s Olympic Games in Tokyo.
The bike’s unique front fork design and handlebars were the product of Lotus Engineering, which is the automotive consultancy division of Group Lotus. The British brand also worked on improving stiffness and front end feel in order to boost rider confidence.
Historically speaking, Lotus has been surprisingly successful as far as cycling is concerned. For example, they were instrumental in the design and development of Lotus Sport bikes for Chris Boardman at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona – Boardman won gold over there.
“Lotus has always been at the very cutting edge of lightweight racing performance with its cars, and now – after 25 years away from cycling – we’ve collaborated to apply the same Lotus core values to this new track bike. We look forward to working with British Cycling as testing continues towards next summer’s Olympics,” stated Miguel Fragoso, Lotus Engineering exec.
Some of the development for the bike’s aero features actually commenced following the 2016 Olympics, when cycling’s governing body, the UCI, changed the rules regarding bike development.
“We have created the frame using high-modulus composites with fabric woven in UK, the in-house team has unrivalled engineering expertise with 30 years of composite experience and two Olympics behind them. Together we have refined the manufacturing method to make a superior product,” said Hope Technology exec, Ian Weatherill.
In order to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, the bike’s design must first be approved by the UCI. Also, it must first be ridden competitively by the Great Britain Cycling Team prior to the end of this year.