Various new things are in the offing from Crank Brothers. It's best known for its extensive pedal range, and the family's getting even bigger. Already on sale are the MXR all-steel budget Eggbeater and Smarty budget mini-platform pedal (complete with interchangeable coloured inserts to match your bike). Still on the way is an all-new "mid-platform" pedal, designed to fit between the Candy mini-platform and Mallet freeride/DH pedal. The mechanism is the familiar four-sided rotating gubbinses and the pedals will be available in the usual wide range of flavours encompassing magnesium, aluminium, carbon fibre, nylon, steel, titanium and various combinations thereof.

Also new is a range of bottom brackets. This is something of a departure for Crank Brothers, which has in the past said that it's not interested in doing "invisible components" - things you can't see don't fit into its rather visual ethos. However, with the long-awaited Cobalt chainset due any time now, just as most of the industry drops ISIS, it kind of had to do bottom brackets just so Cobalt buyers have something to attach their new cranks to. It's hard to tell much about a bottom bracket by looking at it, but the coloured rubber seals are pretty and hopefully will be more effective than some at keeping the gunge out. It's hard not to conclude that Crank Brothers might possibly have slightly missed the crank boat here, but for the ultra-lightweight XC applications they have in mind they'll probably be OK. It's inevitably going to encounter a degree of consumer resistance, though. We can't help thinking that if you're going to do high-end chainsets for borderline-obsolete BB interface standards, there's a likely-looking niche for a posh square-taper unit. But that might just be us...