Italy's finest just got faster.
We've long since entered the age of the aero road bike, which makes Wilier's timing perfect in introducing the Cento1 Air Road Bike Frame. Think of it as the next evolution in the Cento1 series, or more specifically, the progression of the Cento1 SR. As you may already know, the SR was the first significant update to the Cento1 since its introduction in 2008, marking a significant step forward from the Cento1 in terms of both stiffness and power transmission. But knowing it could be even better, Wilier's goal with the Air was to reduce aerodynamic drag while simultaneously improving the ride experience.
The Cento1 Air benefits from the experience gained in developing what Wilier calls the Twin Foil. The aggressive profiling extends from the leading edges of the fork blades, all the way back to the dropouts. And while most aero road bikes suffer in ride quality due to the design constraints of low-drag tube shapes, this type of compromise was viewed as unacceptable during the development of the Cento1 Air. To combat the poor handling exhibited by most of its competitors, the Cento1 Air was built with a massive tapered head tube and steerer tube, which yields surgically precise steering, even on high speed descents. The heavily profiled down tube should yield under power, but with the oversized bottom bracket shell, your watts won't be wasted in frame deflection.
Developed in cooperation with FSA, the BB386EVO is a competitor-dwarfing 86.5mm wide and has a diameter of 46mm. Wilier estimates that the new bottom bracket increases rigidity by 30%, while reducing power dispersion to almost zero. Additionally, this shell's width provides Wilier with the ability to widen the seat and down tube diameters by around 20mm. This drastically increases rigidity, while also promoting an efficient power transfer to the rear triangle. But, this also permits Wilier to decrease the tube's wall thickness, further shedding grams. You'll also find that the BB386 EVO was developed to use press fit bottom bracket cups, eliminating the need for alloy inserts in the shell. Of course, this also shaves a good deal of unnecessary weight. Altogether, Wilier credits BB386 EVO with increasing overall torsional rigidity by 133% and rear triangle stiffness by around 115%.
The Cento1 series has long been associated with integrated seatmasts. However, Wilier wanted to keep the ride of the Cento1 Air from being unnecessarily harsh, and accordingly, a more traditional seatpost was developed for the Air. Naturally, the teardrop shape is proprietary, and was developed to reduce turbulence as air slips around it. It's held in place by a seatpost clamp developed in conjunction with Ritchey. Basically, an internal wedge holds the post in place, and provides more than enough to security to support the rider. But just for peace of mind, there's a low-profile external seatpost clamp as a fail-safe.
To ensure rigidity and confident handling, the Cento1 Air has been constructed from a 60t Mitsubishi high-modulus carbon fiber. The 'T' in 60t refers to ton, as in it can withstand 60 tons of pressure per square millimeter. Wilier used strong carbon fiber, because the stronger the carbon, the less is needed. Thus, Wilier was able to strike the perfect balance between strength and weight.
Other new differentiators for the Air include internal cable routing, which is compatible with both electronic and mechanical drivetrains. Most importantly, however, is the Air's integrated fork. Easily the most distinguishing feature, it's integrated into the profile of the front triangle, tucking it out of the way of aerodynamic turbulence. And when combined with the massive tapered steerer tube, simple logic tells us that the expanded surface yields a stiffer than the poignant angle of a triangle. This technology has been proven with the Twin Blade, and it reduces the Cento1 Air's aerodynamic drag profile.
The Wilier Cento1 Air Road Bike Frame is available in six sizes from X-Small to XX-Large and in the colors Black/grey and Black/red.
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