Eddy Merckx EMX-525
The Eddy Merckx EMX-525: Power Under Control.
Eddy Merckx, the Cannibal with 525 professional victories, including 5 Tour, 5 Giro wins, 1 Vuelta, every one of cycling’s Classics, at least twice, three times World Champion and an Hour record. Described by Vélo magazine as ‘the most accomplished rider that cycling has ever known’.
The new Eddy Merckx EMX-525 (that number ring a bell?), along with the EMX-5, EMX-7 and ETT, are aimed at racing end of the market, with geometry that gives ‘greater maneuverability and sportier, more aggressive performance’.
Eddy Merckx bikes, while light, like to place more emphasis on the stiffness and rigidity of their frames, so that as much of the rider’s power as possible is transferred to the road rather than be lost to a lighter, more flexible frame. This is something that came out of development with the sponsored pro riders who wanted a stiff, controllable bike, that wasted none of their power, rather than an obsessive weight-watcher’s mount, especially given the UCI weight limit.
The result is a frame which was built to be bang on the UCI weight limit once mated to all of its componentry. This makes a lot of sense when you hear of stories about pros having to add heavy componentry or even weights to get their superlight framesets within the weight limit.
The EMX-525 uses a combination of square and curved tube shapes, with a huge down tube and asymmetric chain stays; all created from 600 GPa carbon fibre. The carbon layup on the down-tube runs down around the bottom bracket and onto the chain-stays, to create one integrated piece and avoid any weak spots.
The tube shapes and their bulk hint at great stiffness (just look at the size of that head tube!) and the claimed stiffness figures are as huge as as the tubes: headtube stiffness of 150 Nm/° (STW: 143 NM/°/kg) and the bottom bracket stiffness of 215 Nm/° (STW: 190 NM/°/kg). Its hard to make a direct comparison with other manufacturer’s claims, but it certainly sounds a lot more than anything we’ve heard of before.
The fashionable yet functional asymmetric chain-stays are designed to combat the twisting forces being exerted on the frame as the rider pedals. The Aerofork II uses a 1.125″ – 1.5″ tapered head-tube and is faired into the frame, creating a stiff, stable front end. The idea being to keep the frame as stiff and controllable as possible, hence their claim of ‘the best balanced bike in the world’.
The EMX-525 uses the BB86 bottom bracket and electronic specific cable routing. At the moment the battery is mounted on the non-drive side chain-stay, but this will be changed when Shimano bring out their seatpost mounted battery. There are no plans at the moment to produce a conventionally cabled frame.
Eddy really believes in his bikes, as he also offers a lifetime warranty on all of them.
Prices for the Eddy Merckx EMX-525 frameset: £2,900, or for an Ultegra DI2 eqipped road bike: £4,499.99.
Review coming soon but in the meantime watch the two videos about the EMX-525 below. Also look out for the new Merckx car roof rack, truly lightweight and aerodynamic – almost invisible.