Italian bike brand, 3T, has partnered with Germany’s BMW to market a new limited-edition version of its Exploro.
With a deep understanding of carbon-fibre and aerodynamic, 3T has managed to carve a niche of sorts in the burgeoning gravel bike market, with the Exploro. While rival gravel bikes extol the virtues and benefits of composite frame construction reducing off-road terrain buzz, 3T has gone beyond.
Viewed in its profile the 3T Exploro is clearly shaped very differently to other carbon-fibre gravel bikes. If you look at the tube joints and junctions, you’ll notice how aerodynamically purposed they are. And this is the Exploro’s unique selling point: it claims to be the market’s only dedicated aero specialist gravel bike.
Celebrated German automotive manufacturer, BMW, has been so impressed with 3T’s engineering expertise, that the two companies are now releasing a limited number of special-edition Exploros.
The 3T Exploro for BMW will be available in two colourways: a dual-tone grey and blue-on-grey. Component specification is decidedly premium, with an exclusive Brooks leather saddle and matching natural material grips, to ensure all-day gravel road riding comfort and a sense of traditional style.
Fulcrum alloy wheels are shod with Schwalbe’s One Speed tyres and Shimano’s GRX groupset ensures precise shifting and confident disc-brake actuated deceleration. Rotation weight is smartly reduced by the presence of 3T’s 300g carbon-fibre Torno cranks, which also feature the market’s thinnest profile at only 12mm, further enhancing aerodynamics.
Gravel bike traditionalists might find the notion of aero a bit superfluous off-road, but 3T’s research indicates otherwise. The Exploro design team conducted drag-index tests with 40mm gravel tyre, a mud-splattered bike and two water bottles secured to the frame. The result was lower overall aerodynamic drag than a clean round tube gravel bike with 28mm slick tyres.
These latest Exploro bikes will be available at 3T Experience centres and select BMW dealerships.