MORGAN HILL, CA (BRAIN)—The big news coming from Specialized's recent road launch was its new Turbo tubeless tire.
“The tubeless wheel will use a Campy rim with the exact outer profile of the ALX alloy clincher. What changes is the internal rim shape has been made to conform to the tubeless road standard,” said Josh Knoll, who handles equipment research and development for Specialized. “This shape will still allow riders the ability to run a normal tire and tube set up if they so desire. Options, options, options.”
The tubeless wheelset at less than 1,500 grams is scheduled for introduction in 2010, but Knoll said it should by available to consumers by fall 2009.
The tires are being produced at Hutchinson's factory outside of Paris, France. Hutchinson and Shimano launched the road tubeless option in 2006.
Campy for 2009 will also try its tubeless hand with two wheels: Shamai Ultra 2-Way Fit and Eurus 2-Way Fit.
The 2-Way Fit moniker refers to the wheels' ability to accept tubeless or standard clincher type tires. Campagnolo convinced itself of the merits of tubeless with internal testing.
Campagnolo 2-Way Fit wheels will only be compatible for tubeless use with Hutchinson tubeless tires.
For more on Specialized's 2009 road launch, be sure to read the Aug. 1 issue of Bicycle Retailer & Industry News.
—Jill Janov, Jason Norman