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Colnago is a brand that shouldn’t need an introduction to followers of Signature Cycles. The boutique Italian bike builder is one that is becoming a favourite of ours, a brand that seamlessly combines heritage and performance, with roots in the history of competitive cycling and a line-up that is no stranger to the World Tour.

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Back in January, we were fortunate enough to be invited to the launch of the latest addition to their lineup, the C68 Gravel. This bike fits into Colnago’s C series, the flagship range of Colnago bikes, designed to be the ultimate rider’s bike, and made entirely in Italy. This is the first product launch that Colnago has done in the US, conducted over a few days in Solana Beach, with the Southern Californian landscape offering some excellent gravel riding routes to thoroughly test the bike.

Conducting the launch in the US was no accident, and was organised by the new CEO of Colnago America, Brandt Ferguson, someone we had the pleasure of welcoming to the Signature store last year for our Grand Re-Opening event with Nathan Haas. Also attending the launch was Colnago’s head of R&D, Davide Fumagalli, who gave us great insight into the design and concept behind the bike.

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The C series are bikes that we have a lot of experience working with at Signature, delivering road bikes like this stealthy build for Yared. This gravel-focused bike retains the 6-piece construction of their road bikes, allowing for greater customizability with tuning the ride quality and geometry. This unique construction, differing from the carbon monocoque construction of their V series bikes, is largely hidden in the aesthetics of the bike, with the exception of the contrasting colour of the head tube showing the break in the pieces.

For the Gravel bike, the carbon has been thickened up slightly, to cope with the demands of off-road riding. The bike also features fully internal cable routing, with the cables not just routed through the frame, but also through the new wide flared integrated carbon fiber handlebar and stem.

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So, how did Signature Co-Owner Abraham find the bike?

“Out on the gravel, I found the C68 Gravel to be an absolutely fantastic bike. The ride quality is superb, it truly rides with the directness and stability of a road bike. I love the stiffness of the frame, reacting to my power output very quickly, making it easy to ride on the pavement and helping greatly on the climbs. We rode the bikes hard, and I personally pushed it as hard as I could on the diverse range of gravel rides around the San Diego mountains, and the C68 Gravel took them all in it’s stride, with a racy feel well suited to high intensity sprints and punchier rides.”

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Overall, attending the launch was a fantastic experience, extremely well organised by Ferguson and his team. We can’t thank them enough for inviting us to be a part of the experience, and to get our first impressions of this exceptional gravel bike.

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If you’re thinking of expanding your riding off the road and into the world of gravel biking in 2024, and are looking for a handmade bike rooted in Italian heritage, the C68 could be an ideal choice. Feel free to reach out to us if you have any more questions, or are interested in learning more about this excellent bike!

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