Scott Plasma redesign: adjustable rear wheel caters for multiple tyre width

The new design allows you to choose your tyre size without an aero penalty

(Image credit: Pushing Limits)

Scott has released an updated version of its Plasma time trial bike. 

The Plasma 6 is the result of a four year project, and development goal was to be the fastest weapon at the Kona Ironman World Championships. Unlike the Plasma 5, it's not UCI compliant, with triathletes the primary audience.

A focus has been placed on cockpit adjustability and internal storage, as well as of course aerodynamics.

One of the most notable features is the adjustable rear wheel mount position.

Image: Pushing Limits

The closer a tyre is to the seat tube, the greater the aerodynamic saving. However, brands typically need to leave room for riders to fit their own wheel and tyre preference. The Scott Plasma 6 has an inbuilt flip clip which allows the rider to adjust the position of the rear wheel, with six settings available allowing them to fine tune the ride.

We don't have a huge amount of detail on how this works, but assume it adjusts the wheelbase and chain tension, so we wouldn't recommend it as something you'll be adjusting between rides.

At the front end, it's a different story. Whilst having the downtube as close as possible to the front tyre would be the fastest option, small movements create turbulence. Scott says that the next fastest option is to leave a "significant gap" - which is exactly what it's done.

Image: Pushing Limits

The front forks, as ever from Scott's top end machines, use covers to hide the brake caliper.

The bike features a one piece cokpit from Scott's componentry brand, Syncros. Like the Orbea Ordu released earlier this month, the cockpit can be moved up and down, and can also be tilted. The pads can move outwards and also adjust fore/aft to help riders find the ideal position.

Saddle fore/aft was also an important factor in the design and like many time trial bikes, the saddle can be pushed along a long rail to provide a wide range.

Image: Pushing Limits

The bike leg of an Ironman event is 180 km, so there's plenty of storage, with areas within the frame as well as at the cockpit so that riders can refuel without coming out of their position.

Double Olympic champion Alistair Brownlee was involved in the windtunnel testing of this rig and said: "The integration of the hydration system, bottle and spares is a huge improvement. It’s both more practical and aerodynamic. It’s also considerably more adjustable than the Plasma 5 which means I could try new positions. All of this showed as saved watts from the wind tunnel data."

The Plasma 6 will be available in two different tri focussed specs and one frame set in stores by early December 2020: Plasma 6 Premium (€14,999/£13499), Plasma 6 RC (€8,999/£8099).

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Michelle Arthurs-Brennan

Michelle Arthurs-Brennan is a traditional journalist by trade, having begun her career working for a local newspaper, where highlights included interviewing a very irate Freddie Star (and an even more irate theatre owner), as well as 'the one about the stolen chickens'.

Previous to joining the Cycling Weekly team, Michelle was Editor at Total Women's Cycling. She joined CW as an 'SEO Analyst', but couldn't keep her nose out of journalism and in the spreadsheets, eventually taking on the role of Tech Editor before her latest appointment as Digital Editor. 

Michelle is a road racer who also enjoys track riding and the occasional time trial, though dabbles in off-road riding too (either on a mountain bike, or a 'gravel bike'). She is passionate about supporting grassroots women's racing and founded the women's road race team 1904rt.