Whereas the last version was all about improving aerodynamics, this one focuses on marrying those aero advantages to an all-round package, one that aims to deliver speed, comfort, and stiffness.
Of course, there are still improved aero claims for the Bahrain-McLaren WorldTour team’s bike of choice, thanks to refinements in the frame design. The cockpit and front end of the bike feature-complete cable integration, which offers a reported two-watt saving for each hidden cable over the existing version.
There’s a new fork design that integrates even more closely to the frame, again bringing a claimed two-watt saving. A refined lower seat stays junction, concealed Seatpost clamp, flush thru-axles, and new versions of Merida’s unique disc-brake cooling fins all further contribute towards reducing drag.
The real story of the new Reacto, though, is one of trying to make what is most definitely a rapid race machine into one that GC riders (and us mere mortals) will be happy to ride for long distances in relative comfort.
To this end, the carbon layup on all models has been refined to provide as much compliance as possible without limiting efficiency. Crucial to this new emphasis on bringing comfort is an increase in tyre clearance. The new Reacto can now take a 30mm tyre, something hitherto unknown in the world of the aero speed machine.
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August 06, 2020