Mistakes You Should Avoid While Bikepacking
The Orca is now in its seventh generation, and – to some eyes, at least – might seem a backwards step in terms of evolution.
Orbea has stripped it of some (though not all) of the aero bells and whistles the previous Orca had, instead choosing to prioritise light weight, handling and responsiveness.
It marks a contrast to the current trend of developing road racing bikes to combine aerodynamic efficiency with lightweight performance.
The 2022 Tour de France contained 23 climbs categorised as second category or above – with six HC ascents and summit finishes. There were also 16 category-three and 22 category-four ascents.Maria Victory
While the new Orca has been the subject of CFD (computational fluid dynamics) modelling and wind tunnel testing, Orbea’s road product manager Joseba Arizaga claims aero features were only built in if they didn’t negatively affect ride quality.
A horse for the course
- Price: £11,999/$11,599/€10,999
- Frame: Orca OMX
- Fork: Orca OMX
- Groupset: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 R9200
- Power meter: Yes
- Wheels: Oquo RP 35 LTD
- Seatpost: OC carbon, 27.2mm
- Customizable: Yes
The Orca comes in two-frame specifications. The top-tier OMX frame uses high-modulus Toray T1100 carbon to help it hit its claimed 750g weight (in a size 53), while retaining the stiffness the brand’s pro riders will need.
The previous Orca OMX frame weighed a claimed 830g in a size 53, representing an 80g saving.
This weight incorporates its lacquer coating, paint and hardware (including seatpost clamp assembly and hanger), while the OMX fork is said to weigh 360g with an uncut steerer.
The OMR-spec frame weighs 1,040g, including paint and hardware, utilising ‘intermediate modulus’ Toray T800 carbon that’s said to improve compliance and comfort.
Orbea says it retains the same stiffness-to-weight ratio as its lighter sibling, albeit at a heavier overall weight.