With the gravel market steadily growing, it’s welcoming to see more competitors entering the scene. Titan Racing, have launched their version of a gravel bike which grips the racer inside of us. As for most of us, owning a gravel bike is an itch we’re all eventually going to scratch. Catering for this, Titan Racing has combined what they believe a gravel bike should be. The frame should be designed from carbon as it offers a softer ride, paired with a mix of reliable components that will work in harsh conditions like dust and mud, offer clearance for wider higher volume tires and it needs to be lighter than your mountain bike.
The all-new Switch gravel frame is formed from lightweight carbon fiber and is new to the Titan Racing line up as they roll out their new range of carbon bikes this year. The Switch is definitely on the racier side of gravel bikes with close attention being paid to offer an all-round versatile bike that can take on a variety of off-road terrains as riders look to push their limits of racing and adventure. A through-and-through gravel grinder, the Switch has been designed for the beaten path, weight has been kept to a minimum at every point whilst maintaining value, a key element for most as a gravel bike will not be our only bike.
Taking an overall look at the Switch, the new carbon fiber frame is stiff and the fork is fitted with a carbon steerer that further reduces the weight. With the purpose of a gravel bike being an offroad bicycle, the choice of carbon fiber is welcoming as it not only keeps the weight down to offer its’ best performance but helps absorb some of the vibrations. Other features include internal cable routing which keeps cables hidden from the elements and presents an overall sleek looking bike, three water bottle mounts, 12mm thru-axles aid in stiffness and strength, disc brakes make an obvious choice as they offer braking performance in all conditions, and an increased tire clearance allows you to run wider higher volume tires for better grip and comfort. Lastly, the Switch comes with Titan Racing’s 5 Year Multi-User Warranty which is a massive bonus when buying carbon.
The Switch is available in two spec options; the Pro and the Elite. Both bikes have a flawless paint job with the Elite looking more stealth and the Pro a little racier, finished off in hot red and gloss black. The Pro being the flagship model is spec’d with a full Shimano Ultegra drivetrain with hydraulic disc brakes, the Elite is generously spec’d with Shimano 105 and cable discs. Both drivetrains are fitted with gravel ratios; 46/36. The Pro gets the extra comfort of the carbon seatpost and Shimano RS170 wheelset whilst both bikes are fitted with Vittoria Terreno tubeless ready tires which will cope with the rugged terrain while remaining comfortable with the extra volume rubber.
The frame geometry on the Switch is designed for tackling long-distances with emphasis on efficiency on gravel and tar, with a reach that’s optimized for performance. The head tube angle is also on the racier side and the slightly flared drop gravel bars offer a wider hand positioning for off-road riding without compromising on road ergonomics. This really allows the rider to take full advantage of the speed and performance of this bike, once again targeting the racer.
With South Africa’s vast terrain and endless dirt roads that are ripe for racers and adventurers alike, the Switch may become the answer to many of our gravel bike itches. A versatile bike offering a high quality build on a lightweight frame, at a competitive price.