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Built To Win | The all-new Colnago V4RS

In Colnago's words, "it is hard to improve what is already great." Colnago needed an evolution, rather than a completely new design. They had one goal - to ensure that the successor of the V3RS was built to do one thing... WIN.

October 2020 - New Bike Design Started:

Developed with the team Since day 0. Colnago are always in contact with the UAE Team Emirates, and nowadays the UAE Team ADQ, receiving their feedback and understanding their challenges. By listening to them, Colnago clearly understand what is needed to create a winning product. While the V3Rs was winning the Tour, Colnago were already thinking about the next Colnago superbike.

April-October 2021 - First Internal Prototypes Produces:

Not only performance. A touch of Colnago is needed. In the development phase, the aesthetic and functional developments have gone hand in hand. Colnago is known for the beauty of its products. The new bike must not only be functionally performative, but also be extremely polished and refined in the look. Effort to use less paint on the frame to decrease overall weight. C68 had a key role in the development of this frame.

October 2021 - Design Selection & Tests:

Thanks to the work done on the modular parts of the C68, Colnago were able to study, test and optimize different solutions for each part key part of the future monocoque frame. In October we carried out the tests for UCI approval of the Colnago Prototipo. We started preparing a small number of versions of the bicycle that would differ only by the carbon frames layups.

May 2022 - UAE Team Receive Bike:

Colnago sent the first Colnago Prototipo to Tadej Pogacar in May 2022. He tested a no-brand version on the roads of Tour de France. Ahead of such an important event the decision was up to him: stick to a “safe” choice - racing with the Colnago V3Rs - or risk using a totally new prototype bike. We all know what the decision was.

July-October 2022 Prototipo Race Validation:

First Slovenia, then all-in for the Tour de France. Colnago had a limited number of Prototipo frames, they left open choice to the athletes whether to use the Prototipo or the proven V3Rs. ALL the team riders chose to use the Prototipo in races. Colnago didn’t have enough. The riders who sticked to the V3Rs took this choice out of material shortage, all the others rushed to try and race the Colnago Prototipo.


After 4 months of use, the Prototipo accumulated 23 victories by 10 different riders, along with 28 podiums by 14 different riders - a bike that has now been unveiled to us as the Colnago V4RS.

The V4Rs has been conceived as a fully-integrated system. While working on the aerodynamics in order to reduce the overall drag, the superimposition of effects simply doesn’t work. All the components must be developed and tested together in order to state the overall benefits. That’s why all the presented data is obtained with the bicycle in race-ready configuration, which means that it is equipped with head unit, 2 bottle-cages but one bottle only (as in the crucial race phases).

Drag Reduction:
This process of design and development started from the bike frontal area, which has a huge impact on the drag, both directly (A factor in the formula) and through its shape, by affecting the overall Cd factor.

Optimised Frontal Area:
The optimization of the frontal area also involved an evolution of the head tube geometry. Its shape has been revised and perfectly integrated with the new lightweight fork (designed to allow an effective tyre clearance up to 32 mm) and with the new cockpit. Although the head set upper bearings are bigger than the V3Rs ones, allowing the cables to run inside without the need of the D-Shaped steerer column and enhancing the overall front-end stability, the overall shape has a better drag. This, of course, required a deep surface modelling to keep the frontal area smaller and a better aerodynamic shape factor.

New CC.01 Cockpit:
Although the V4Rs is compatible with third-party cockpits, the overall platform has been optimized with the new Colnago cockpit CC.01, whose drag surface had been reduced up to 16%, compared to the cockpits mounted on V3Rs, and at the same time the shape has been designed and shaped as a NACA-derived profile in order to have the minimum impact on the air flow, which is laminar and clean while impacting the components. This aerodynamic evolution was carried out without reducing the overall stiffness of the component, as important as aerodynamic in sprint and acceleration.

Even Small Details Matter:
Furthermore, for a perfect match and lower drag, the cockpit is offered also with the new 3D-printed, cyclo-computer support, compatible with Wahoo Bolt V2 (more compatibilities yet to come). This detail, on top to the astonishing and clean aesthetics, provide also a measurable (!) 0,75 W* saving at 50 km/h, which is rather relevant, considering the small area of the component. *WAD = Weighted Average Drag (i.e. the sum of power at different yaw angles, weighed by the probability of occurring in such a condition).

Balancing Stiffness:
During riding, a bicycle is subjected to several different loads, acting on the whole bicycle at the same time. To replicate and measure in indoor testing procedures able to stress the frame in many of these conditions at the same time, forced our engineers to develop internal testing methodologies in order to take into account both static and dynamic and both flexural and torsional loads. The result is a bicycle whose all the stiffnesses are fine-tuned and harmonized among each other to offer the maximum performance and balance in all the racing ultimate conditions

Innovative and racing-validated lamination:
This result has been achieved thanks to the innovative carbon fiber lamination featured on the V4Rs. For the ultimate racing machine, many different layups featuring as many different stiffness matrices, have been developed, tested and validated for professional use. The final call was given to the riders themselves, who were provided for the most complete and stressful competition of the year (TDF 2022) with “Prototipo” with the most promising layups, in order to bring the bicycle to real limit conditions (both on cobblestones, sprint, climbs and downhills) and provide data and feedback to our engineers.

Crash Worthiness and Maintenance:
The overall design robustness of the bicycle can be crucial in 3-week competitions, as well as in a classic race. With respect to the V3Rs, the new V4Rs significantly improve the crashworthiness of the most exposed parts which may be subjected to impact in racing conditions. An example is given by the completely new designed seat stays, which, besides the more aerodynamic shape, significantly improve the flexural and impact resistance.

The robustness of this design also minimizes the need of maintenance in, for example, the new headset, fully provided by Ceramic Speed, which uses SLT technology with unique solid polymer and stainless-steel components to “remedy two of the most common causes behind bearing failure: the absence of lubrication and grease contamination through dirt ingress”