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Scott Addict RC: first look

8 Nov 2019
Verdict:

The Scott Addict has gained a host of new features, yet somehow it has got lighter

In recent times, the arrival of new top-end bikes has followed a remarkably consistent theme. Regardless of the brand, the flagship race platform gets disc brakes, dropped seatstays, integrated cables, wide tyre clearance and aero tube profiling.

In that respect, Scott’s new Addict RC is no different.

‘It’s because there are certain features that just perform best,’ says Scott’s Janosch Wintermantel. ‘Lower seatstays are more aero and provide better compliance.

Discs offer superior braking performance compared to rim brakes. It’s no surprise other companies have reached the same conclusions.

The industry is just getting closer, given current materials and techniques, to the best way a road race bike can be built.’

That isn’t to say the new Addict RC is just Scott keeping up with the Joneses.

‘The room in which we have to differentiate ourselves may be getting smaller, but in the new bike we have done all we can to get an edge,’ says Wintermantel.

‘Tiny features such as the Addict’s hollow dropouts and unique seatpost clamp design help shed weight.

We also use the very best carbon fibre available even though it is incredibly expensive, which isn’t something all of our competitors do even in their top-tier frames.’

Another year or two of concerted R&D will no doubt open up new developments in materials and construction techniques, plus we could see further advances if the UCI changes its current regulations surrounding bike design, but for now Wintermantel says the market is simply reaching the top of its developmental curve.

Yet, despite it getting harder for bike designers to find improvements, he claims the performance of the new Addict RC has been enhanced in almost every area.

‘It helped that we had a solid starting point,’ he says. ‘The old Addict was a proven design – it won the Vuelta last year – but our engineers felt they could improve upon it.’

That meant adding a range of new characteristics without making it heavier. ‘It was out of the question that the Addict could gain weight,’ says Wintermantel. ‘In the end we got it 100g lighter and also 14.5% stiffer at the bottom bracket.’

This was achieved by rethinking the frame production process. The old Addict was made in four parts and bonded at eight joints. This new design is made in three parts with only four bonded joints.

‘That meant we could use less material, making the frame lighter but also stiffer,’ says Wintermantel. ‘We backed this up with a number of neat details that saved more weight.

There is no single metal part on the frame: the calliper mounts, the seatpost clamp, everything is carbon. It’s something we haven’t been able to do before.’

Even the aero tube profiling was done with half an eye on weight.

‘We only applied flattened truncated shapes to the main tubes and nowhere unnecessary,’ says Wintermantel. ‘Despite not going overboard, that still improved on the old design by about 6 watts at 45kmh.’

Balancing the books

Even integration can be your enemy when light weight is the priority, so trying to achieve a clean new front end without adding unwanted mass forced Scott’s engineers to create an innovative new feature that Wintermantel says may be rolled out across all future Scotts.

‘We call it the “eccentric bicycle foreshaft”,’ he says. That means that, similar to an eccentric bottom bracket on a tandem, Scott has offset the upper headset bearing 3mm rearwards.

This frees space for cables to travel down the front of the steerer through a channel in the spacers and down the gap created in the front of the head tube by moving the bearing back.

‘We recognised that no bike on the market offers perfect integration regardless of transmission choice.

‘Bikes are either limited to electronic shifting or have a flattened steerer that allows mechanical shifting but compromises handling,’ says Wintermantel.

‘We are confident we’ve nailed the solution – some of our pros prefer mechanical shifting and were dubious about disc brakes, but as soon as they rode the bike they were reluctant to go back to their old Addict.

That’s saying something, because one of the pros was Simon Yates, the very rider who won the Vuelta aboard his old Addict.’

Scott Addict RC £6,299
scott-sports.com

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