Fed up with traffic jams and squeezing onto public transport? Do you daydream of rolling countryside and twisting trails scything through forest glades? Then you need get on your bike pronto. We've picked out 10 of the newest and shiniest velocipedes from trade shows like Core Bike and The Bike Place to inspire you.
Pivot Mach 5.7 Carbon
from £3600, pivotcycles.co.uk
Granted, £3600 is a lot of money – but Pivot's Mach 5.7 Carbon is worth it if you're serious about your mountain biking. It takes the brilliantly effective DW-Link suspension of its alloy namesake and pairs it with an all-new carbon-fibre frame. That makes it lighter than many cross-country bikes, while still offering 145mm of plush, trail centre-friendly suspension.
The base model comes with Shimano SLX and XT parts, but you can spec it however you like – just as long as your wallet can handle it.
Whyte 29er CS
The hottest trend in mountain bikes right now is 29in rims, which roll faster over rough terrain than the usual 26in. But there’s more to the Whyte 29er CS than just big wheels: the frame is crafted from carbon-fibre to be ultra-light and torsionally stiff for efficient pedalling, yet also vertically compliant so it's comfy enough to ride all day.
Factor in a SRAM X0 transmission, Easton wheels and a weight of just 10.6kg (23.4lbs), and you've got a true off-road rocket.
Genesis Fortitude Adventure
As the name suggests, the new Genesis Fortitude Adventure is designed with long-distance off-road exploring in mind: it has mounting points for three bottles, mudguards, a rear rack, and front and rear panniers, while the low-maintenance, 11-speed Shimano Alfine transmission is hidden away in the rear hub.
There's no suspension, but the combination of 29in wheels and a frame made from springy Reynolds 725 steel means there's simply no need.
£3500 (frame only), cervelo.com
Cervelo's radical P5 is built for pure speed. Honed using supercomputers and wind tunnels, it's reputedly so aerodynamic it could save you 30 seconds over a 40km time-trial – a huge margin in racing.
The P5 is fully compatible with Shimano's Di2 electronic gear system, its brakes are a world-first hydraulic caliper design from Magura, and it even has integrated storage in the form of a sleek handlebar bottle cage and a hidden nutrition compartment near the bottom bracket. Just incredible.
Planet X RT-57
Planet X is renowned for producing rapid, great-value road bikes and the new RT-57 is no exception. The sleek, stiff frame is made from high-modulus carbon-fibre and weighs just 999g.
Paired with SRAM's second-from-top Force transmission and brakes – kit normally found on far more expensive bikes – it's ideal for long-distance 'sportive' events and hilly terrain. At the same time, adding a pair of aero bars would transform it into a fine first triathlon machine.
More after the break...
Say what you like about the British government, but its Cycle To Work scheme is a wonderful thing – and Carrera's Virago road bike sneaks in under the magic £1000 limit.
Your £1000 nets you a good-looking carbon-fibre frame, too, rather than an aluminium one, along with high-quality Shimano 105 components and Mavic CXP-22 rims. OK, so Carrera lacks the cycling-club kudos of some rivals, but badge snobbery aside the Virago is a great bike at a fantastic price.
Avanti Inc 3
New Zealand brand Avanti is new to the UK, but produces a broad range of well-designed, well-specced machines, including mountain bikes, time-trial machines and BMXs.
The aluminium-framed Inc 3 is its top-end city bike and pairs a virtually maintenance-free Shimano Alfine 11 hub gearbox with a clean, quiet belt drive instead of a regular chain. Add in powerful hydraulic disc brakes and a stealthy matte-black paint job and you've got a perfect urban assault weapon.
Genesis Day 01 Disc
Tinkering with gears may be some folks' idea of fun, but most of us just want a bike that delivers maximum smiles for minimal fuss. That's where the Genesis Day 01 Disc comes in: it has only one gear, so there are no shifters to keep in tune, and the brakes are powerful Avid BB7s, which'll run for months with barely a tweak of an adjuster.
Technically, it’s a cyclocross bike, so it’s tough enough to take off-road, but with rack and mudguard mounts, it’d make a fantastic commuter.
Tern Verge Duo
Tern is a new brand, but its bikes can trace their lineage to Dahon's excellent commuters. The compact, speedy Verge range builds on those credentials with an improved folding mechanism and sleeker lines, while the Duo model adds a trick two-speed automatic gearbox.
To keep you clean on the way to work it comes with mudguards and a flexible chain cover – and there's even a pump built into the seatpost and a multitool hidden in one of the handlebar grips.
Electric bikes are starting to catch on in a major way, but the idea of a powered bicycle is far from new – Solex built more than eight million of them between 1946 and 1988.
Now, the French brand is back with a three-strong range including this, the classy-looking Solexity. It owes its graceful lines to Ferrari's favourite design house, Pininfarina, and it'll do up to 15mph – but to race around on one is missing the point. It's about simple, stylish, sweat-free transportation.