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Campagnolo Adds a Heaping of Gravel to Its Menu

Campagnolo Shifts to the Gravel Scene

Campagnolo—the storied Italian bicycle component manufacturer—has been focused on road innovation  for nearly a century, but with the off-road scene’s rapid expansion, it’s decided to get a little dirty with its first gravel-specific drivetrain: the 13-speed Ekar. In doing so, Campagnolo stakes a claim to the gravel kingdom with innovative technology, elegant design, and the simplicity of mechanical shifting.

Getting to Know the 13-Speed Gruppo

Up front, Ekar’s Ergopower shifters feature elongated brake levers for greater leverage when stopping, as well as shifter hoods for more stability on bumpy off-road sections. Campagnolo carried over its familiar Ultrashift™ for multi-gear up-shifts in a single throw to help you engage the right gear no matter how abruptly the grade changes on climbs. 

The piece de resistance of Ekar is the stunning 1x carbon crankset, a marvel of engineering designed to reduce internal dust buildup at the bearings for greater durability off-road. Another boost for gravel adventurers is that the crankset can stay on during chainring swaps, so there is no need for a special crank-removal tool. 

The 13-speed rear derailleur shifts with the accuracy you’d expect from Campagnolo. For off-road durability, Camagnolo also reinforced the Ekar with carbon—a boon for all riders whether your Ekar is for in-the-drops racing and snack-paced bikepacking alike. It pairs with the Campagnolo 13-speed cassette, of which there are three gearing options, with ranges covering gravel endurance to gravel racing. 

And hydraulic disc brakes latch onto the fork and chainstay for impressive stopping power and modulation, both of which are great for speed control when riding varied and unpredictable terrain. 

All in all, Ekar is a thing of beauty and an alluring alternative to the 11 and 12-speed drivetrains that have saturated gravel’s startlines and solo missions for some time.

Sharing the Stoke for the Ekar

We’re so stoked on the Ekar that we had our expert mechanic, Luke Dordai, talk through his first impressions during an unboxing video. From the new driver body that squeezes on a 9-tooth cog, to the thoughtfully designed backward compatibility nature of the Ekar, Luke breaks down the drivetrain’s many perks and possibilities.