German manufacturer Corratec has been in and out of the UK for quite a few years. For 2009 Raleigh UK has picked up the baton with a view to supplementing its own new bikes (of which more shortly) with a high-end, niche brand.
The 2009 Corratec range certainly looks pretty smart, if surprisingly subdued compared to the mental yellow/red/blue/green bikes that Jan Erik Ostergaard campaigned on in the 90s. That kind of paint scheme (and the European fondness for herds of decals roaming freely across the frame) is the sort of thing that’s tended to hinder continental brands in the UK, but most of the Euros seem to have toned things down somewhat, and Corratec’s black/white/silver pallette is no exception.
Particularly clean-looking is the Air Tech full suspension platform (pictured at the top). The suspension design features chainstay pivots and an unusual through-the-seat-tube shock position. Corratec’s “2 Circle” design involves a stubby swing link and a pivoting shock carrier – it works in essentially the same way as pivoting the shock off the frame and having a swing link to stiffen things up, but it’s packaged in a particularly cunning manner. You get 100mm of travel, and there are five bikes in the range.
For those after a little more travel, the X-Force has a more familiar suspension layout (with the exception of the trunnion-mounted shock) with a choice of 120 or 140mm of travel.
There’s also hardtails aplenty, including carbon fibre racers, aluminium trailsters and a full range of the faintly cruiseresque Super Bow frames for which Corratec is perhaps best known – pictured is the rather fine Super Bow Titan in, of course, titanium.
Raleigh will be distributing pretty much the entire Corratec range, including road and trekking bikes. You can see them all at www.corratec.com – we’ll bring you UK pricing as soon as we have the numbers…