Nairo Quintana won the Tour de la Provence on a Canyon Aeroad, the bike for which the Germany direct-to-consumer brand issued a stop-ride notice in 2021 after Mathieu van der Poel’s handlebar broke. Now Quintana and many others are riding the bike with a reworked cockpit from Canyon.
Because the Aeroad frameset and integrated cockpit were designed as a system that eliminated a traditional steerer tube, riders and teams couldn’t simply swap in a new bar/stem set-up.
The Aeroad CP0018 bar/stem featured a novel width-adjustment feature, where bolts on the bar’s underside could be removed, the bars expanded out or in, and then the system was bolted back in place. This new feature was not what broke on van der Poel’s bike (his cracked underneath where his shifter was clamped on), but the connection was enough to set tongues wagging.
In any event, Canyon issued a stop-ride for the bike that had been sold the world over, and set about constructing a reinforced version of the CP0018 bar/stem, and getting those to pro riders and consumers.
As of mid-February, Canyon’s sponsored pros and more than 1,800 consumers are back to riding reworked Aeroads. Canyon spokesperson Garin Fons said the company has been in regular contact with customers who have affected bikes, and most have been taken care of now.
“Servicing existing Aeroad customers in the months since Canyon issued the stop-ride notice has been the top priority,” Fons said. “And, now that the majority of existing Aeroad customers have been serviced, Canyon is also reworking previously unsold models and beginning to make these new Aeroad models available to the public.”
Canyon’s website lists the Aeroad as available in “summer 2022.”
“On a side note, keen-eyed readers might have noticed that some Canyon pros raced this past season aboard Aeroads that did not feature the same seatpost-sealing device now incorporated on all reworked customer Aeroad bikes,” Fons said. “This is because Canyon is prioritizing getting as many customer bikes equipped with the sealing system first. Riding without the seatpost-sealing system did not pose any risk to these Canyon athletes since the sealing system (unlike the re-engineered cockpit components) is not required to ensure rider safety. Instead, the sealing system minimizes cosmetic wear on the seatpost and ensures that the Aeroad meets their commitment to excellence.”
Here is a look at one of the Canyon Aeroads Arkea-Samsic had on hand at the Tour de la Provence for Quintana, plus two images that show how the CP0018 works. The Colombian climber raced the Shimano Dura-Ace C50 tubulars shown here on the flat days, and used the lighter C36 tubulars on the final day, which finished on the steep Montagne de Lure where he outdistanced Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) and everyone else to win the day and the overall.
The CP0018 bar/stem looks like many integrated cockpits, but can be adjusted for width. Also, the system uses an internal clamp instead of a traditional stem’s bolts around a steerer tube.
Canyon issued a stop-ride notice on the entire bike when van der Poel’s handlebar broke, because riders can’t just swap in another bar/stem. Canyon kept the original design, but reinforced the construction.
The CP0018 looks like a one-piece bar/stem, but it’s actually three pieces. Width adjustment and travel convenience are the reasons Canyon gives for the design.
While sprinters were running huge gears in Provence, Quintana stuck with the 53/39 — arguably still plenty large for a climb that averages 6.5 percent with steeper pitches along the 13.4km ascent.
In Provence, some sprinters chose all-round bikes instead of aero bikes, and this climber chose an aero bike instead of Canyon’s ultra-light Ultimate.
Canyon has been shipping a new seatpost-sealing system to customers. It’s not a safety feature but a cosmetic one for the seatpost. Not all pros have been using it, because it doesn’t affect function or structural integrity.
One of Nairo Quintana’s Canyon Aeroads from the Tour de la Provence.