There are just three days to go until the start of the Tour de France, and the accompanying new bike launches have already begun in earnest. Today Lapierre unveiled an update to its Xelius range with the announcement of the new Xelius SL.
The new bike, which will be known as the Xelius SL3, only sees minimal visual updates over the previous version. Details of the new bike are slight, but according to the Groupama-FDJ team, it has been treated to a new, more aggressive geometry, optimised carbon construction and the addition of a new fully-integrated cockpit.
Together, those changes result in a bike that is lighter in weight - although how much lighter is yet unconfirmed. From the images, it also looks as though the floating seat stays have also been reworked somewhat.
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"The new Xelius SL3 is a technological evolution of the SL2," explained the head of Groupama-FDJ's performance unit, Frédéric Grappe. "The stiffness-comfort ratio has been optimised while improving aerodynamics and weight to meet the demands of riders. The evolution of its geometry allows [riders] to ride at high speed in complete safety while preserving excellent handling. Finally, with all of its wiring fully integrated, the SL3 refines its overall lines to become a very clean machine."
According to the team, the bike has also been given a paint scheme "in keeping with Groupama FDJ's 2022 colours," suggesting a potential switch in blue hues for the team next year.
It has also been confirmed that the bike will be ridden by Groupama-FDJ's GC leader, David Gaudu, during Saturday's Grand Depart in Brest.
"The first sensations are excellent," Gaudu exclaimed. "Reactivity, agility, the bike responds perfectly on difficult terrain. Its weight is optimised, and not to spoil anything, the new design is magnificent. I can’t wait to ride it at the Grand Départ in Brest, at home."
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Josh has been with us as Senior Tech Writer since the summer of 2019 and throughout that time he's covered everything from buyer's guides and deals to the latest tech news and reviews. On the bike, Josh has been riding and racing for over 15 years. He started out racing cross country in his teens back when 26-inch wheels and triple chainsets were still mainstream, but he found favour in road racing in his early 20s, racing at a local and national level for Team Tor 2000. He's always keen to get his hands on the newest tech, and while he enjoys a good long road race, he's much more at home in a local criterium.
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