Two fast, aerodynamic road bikes make their debut at Tour de France

In case you’ve been too caught up in World Cup fever to notice, the Tour de France gets underway tomorrow. Over the course of the next three weeks, the best cyclists in the world will go head to head on what promises to be one of the toughest road racing routes in recent memory. This year’s Tour will include some incredibly difficult mountain stages designed to push even four-time winner Chris Froome to his absolute limits. But some riders will find the race to be just a bit easier, thanks to a pair of new bikes from competing manufacturers, both of which promise to be the fastest ever.

Earlier in the week, Cannondale took the wraps off of its new SystemSix model, a bike the company has called “the world’s fastest.” A few days later, Specialized followed suit by unveiling the S-Works Venge, saying it’s the fastest bike it has ever produced. Both models are disc-brake only, come with electronic gear shifters, feature components designed to work specifically with one another, and offer state-of-the-art geometry. As you can probably imagine, they also come with some serious price tags that put them out of reach for most riders.

Which of these two models will actually reign supreme on the roads of France remains to be seen, but they take a very similar approach to one another when it comes to making improvements in terms of speed. Both Cannondale and Specialized focused on making these two bikes as aerodynamic as possible, cutting down on drag wherever possible. The result is unique shapes to the down tube, top tube, and seat tube, as well as the head tube, which has been built to integrate neatly with the fork and frame.

“Aerodynamic drag is the single greatest resistive force that riders have to overcome, so it is important to everyone, not just racers,” Nathan Barry, design engineer at Cannondale, says. “SystemSix delivers more speed, to more riders, more of the time.”

Both the SystemSix and Venge are meant for all-purpose riding, not just sprinting or climbing hills. To that end, both see significant gains in performance no matter where they are ridden. Specialized says that its latest creation is actually 8 seconds faster over a 25-mile route when compared to previous models, while Cannondale claims riders use 10 percent less power while cruising along at an 18-mile-per-hour pace. The company also boldly claims that the SystemSix will beat any other bike in the world in a 200 meter, 37-mile-per-hour sprint, besting the competition by more than four bike lengths.

For now, we’ll have to wait to see how these bikes perform in the Tour de France to understand how these numbers translate to the real world. But amateur cyclists will eventually get their chance to test them out as well. Cannondale will offer the the SystemSix in four men’s models and one women’s version, with prices starting at $4,000. The top-of-the-line version that the pro riders will use comes in at a cool $11,000 however. Meanwhile, the Specialized S-Works Venge starts as low as $2,500, with the elite model priced at $12,500.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: 1-handed drone control, a pot that stirs itself

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in November, from 'Buster Scruggs’ to ‘Dracula’

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, witty humor, or anything else.
Cars

Lime’s first carsharing service motors into Seattle this week

Lime may be better known for its app-based bike and scooter rental services, but in Seattle, Washington this week it's launching its very first carsharing service, similar to Car2go and Zipcar.
Cars

From Rolls-Royce to Lamborghini, these are the most expensive cars in the world

If you recently discovered an oil reserve in your backyard, you probably have some extra cash to spend. Look no further, because we’ve rounded up the most expensive cars in the world.
Deals

Walmart kicks off Black Friday with a home gym discount

As the holidays inch nearer and nearer, some of the biggest retailers are unveiling their best Black Friday offers. If your objective is to start living a healthier life, Walmart has the best deal right now on a home gym.
Outdoors

Built to take a beating and still perform, these are the best hiking watches

A proper hiking watch should track exercise metrics and act as a navigational co-pilot during any kind of hike. Ideally, it'll even have a built-in GPS system and sensors. Here are five of the best hiking watches.
Wearables

Fitbit's latest update brings 'Quick Replies' feature to the Charge 3

Back in August, Fitbit confirmed its new wearable -- the Fitbit Charge 3. The new fitness tracker features a touchscreen OLED display, smartwatch capabilities, enhanced fitness features and more. Here's everything you need to know about it.
Wearables

Fitbit Charge 3 vs. Fitbit Versa: Which one should you choose?

Fitbit's latest fitness tracker -- the Charge 3 -- comes with smartwatch capabilities similar to the Fitbit Versa. With only a $50 difference between them, we pit the two wearables against each other to find out which one is worth the…
Outdoors

These bike lights use the magic of magnetism to generate power

Magnetic Microlights are a new option for cyclists that use nothing more than magnets to generate power to illuminate a bike light that is bright, eco-friendly, and increases the safety of riders.
Smart Home

Row your way to a healthy bod with the CityRow Go connected rowing machine

Want the connected experience of a Peloton but dislike biking? You can now feel the burn of a cardio-busting rowing session from the comfort of your living room with the new CityRow Go connected home rowing machine.
Mobile

Here's a look at what's inside Fossil's Pop-up Shop in New York

Fossil has released its first-ever smartwatch featuring Qualcomm's Snapdragon Wear 3100. The Fossil Sport comes packed with a heart rate monitor, built-in GPS, NFC, and Google's latest version of Wear OS. Here's everything you need to know.
Deals

Cyber Monday 2018: When it takes place and where to find the best deals

Cyber Monday is still a ways off, but it's never too early to start planning ahead. With so many different deals to choose from during one of the biggest shopping holidays of the year, going in with a little know-how makes all the…
Wearables

Check out 25 of the best Wear OS apps for your smartwatch

Looking for some ways to spruce up that new Android smartwatch of yours? Here are the best Wear OS apps to download and use with any Android smartwatch, including a few specially enhanced for Wear OS 2.0.
Health & Fitness

Withings new Pulse HR is a customizable, connected fitness tracker

Inspired by Withings first ever fitness tracker the Pulse, the new Pulse HR is updated with the latest in fitness tracker technology including smart notifications, 24/7 heart rate tracking, and more.