In amongst the gripping racing of the weekend, the very most observant of viewers will have clocked a few subtle differences to the Cervélo S5 aero bikes, as ridden by a select few of Jumbo-Visma’s men’s and women’s World Tour teams, including Omloop Het Nieuwsblad winner Wout van Aert (opens in new tab).
It would be the latest in what appears to be Cervélo’s preferred launch strategy: race first; release later.
Back in the spring of 2021, Jumbo-Visma riders were spotted riding the new Cervélo R5, long before it was eventually released (opens in new tab) and we finally had a chance to review it (opens in new tab). Likewise, in October 2021, Marianne Vos and van Aert were both seen riding the new Cervélo R5-CX weeks before it was officially announced.
What's changed in the new Cervélo S5?
Perhaps the most striking differences are those around the headtube. Thanks to a recent tweak regarding the UCI’s 3:1 rule, which governs the permitted tubing shapes, Cervélo has taken full advantage and increased the depth of head tube – essentially filling in a little more of the frame’s main triangle to better improve the air flow.
When viewed from the front, it’s possible to see how the head tube also appears to have been given a narrower middle section, whilst also flaring back out a little more nearer the top of the head tube.
It might just be the angle of the photos, but it appears as though the fork legs now bow out a little further from the spokes than previously, too.
Whether it’s for increased stiffness or better aerodynamics, the bottom bracket area seems to have had its size inflated, now rising even further up the seat tube and again filling in a little more of the frame’s main triangle.
Finally, towards the rear of the bike, the same filling in of the main triangle occurs – this time around the junction between the seat tube and the top tube. Just how many watts these tweaks are likely to save is anyone’s guess. But what we can say is: it’ll probably be a little while longer until the official release drops.
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