Some road bikes are built for endurance. Others are built for sheer speed. The Diamondback IO is endowed with capabilities in both areas, making it ideal for endurance athletes looking for the fastest ride they can get their hands on.
Billed as a “wicked-fast, lightweight, and slippery road bike,” the bicycle takes the innovations from the outfit’s Andean road bike and fused it with new technologies that the outfit describe as simply groundbreaking. The result is a bike that performs just 10 percent slower than the outfit’s top-of-the-line time-trial racer, all while providing the responsive handling of a traditional road bike.
The Diamondback IO uses a frame with strategically-shaped depressions into the trailing edge of the airfoils, which set up small, isolated areas of counter-rotating turbulent airflow. When set up in the right pattern, the counter-flow areas can interfere with the natural airflow across the frame, remarkably reducing the wake that leaves the bike. According to the outfit, these depressions, which they’re calling “vortex generators,” significantly improve the bike’s aerodynamic performance compared to other aero-focused road bikes in the market.
Aside from the tube shape, the bike has also been tested with a number of different seat stay options in order to improve its aerodynamic efficiency. They eventually settled on an “Ultralow Seat Stay” that, according to the Diamondback, demonstrates the perfect blend of aero efficiency, lateral stiffness, and vertical compliance, ensuring the rider won’t be sacrificing comfort in exchange for improved performance. The bike, by the way, borrows the bottom bracket design of the outfit’s Andean model, which allows you use it as in-bike storage, albeit in a slightly modified form to strike a better ratio between aerodynamics and weight.
Of course, there’s more to a performance road bike than a wicked frame design. As such, every element of the Diamondback IO has been chosen based on aerodynamic performance, functionality, comfort and fit. This includes the Zipp SL-7 Aero, a wing-shaped carbon fiber handlebar that boasts supreme aerodynamics and excellent ergonomics, along with a top tube storage section sized to hold energy bars and other on-the-go nutrition options.
All cables, of course, are routed inside the tubes. In this instance, however, the company wanted to improve their routing system, which led them to design an entirely new process that involves a new proprietary stem. Using the new system, all cables are neatly hidden out of sight, with nary a single inch of it visible from the shifters all the way to the derailleurs.
Aside from combining the features of endurance bikes with time trial racers, the bike has also been designed for versatile function. While its geometry is a natural fit for base miles and hill training, the seat post can be easily oriented towards the front to mimic a triathlon bike geometry in case you want to use it for either racing or race training. And, yes, clip-on aero bars can be attached to the handlebars for the same purpose.
The Diamondback IO will come out spring of 2018.