Ah, the fantastic phenomenon of trickle-down technology. It really is a wonderful thing. Felt Bicycles made a decisive step into the realm of the "superbike" when it introduced its 2011 DA model, a complete redesign of its old flagship that had gone through several prototype iterations before finally being released to the public. The bike was beautiful, and had some standout features in its category, but it was also nearly unattainable. Small production quantities were one limiting factor, but price was the bigger one. The only complete bike spec was a top-of-the-line setup complete with Zipp wheels and Di2 componentry. It set you back a whopping $12,500. Not exactly the average age grouper machine.
But for 2011, Felt is introducing an entire range for the DA. The high-zoot version will still be offered, but four new builds are offered, at much lower price points. Each of these is based around a model with slightly less advanced carbon, which will probably mean a marginally heavier and/or softer bike. But it also means that, at the low end, you can get a full-on Felt DA, complete with the Bayonet 3 front end, integrated brakes, and all the aerodyamic benefit of the highest-end model for an MSRP of $3,999. Still not exactly cheap, but that's a price point that many more triathletes will be willing to pay for this level of aerodynamics.
The full DA lineup is as follows:
- DA 1 - Ultimate+Nano Carbon, Di2, Zipp 808 Firecrest Wheels - $12,999
- DA 1 Frameset - Ultimate+Nano Carbon - $4,999
- DA 2 - MMC Carbon, Di2, Felt TTR1 Wheels - $8,999
- DA 3 - MMC Carbon, SRAM Red, Felt TTR2 Wheels - $4,999
- DA 4 - MMC Carbon, Vision Metron/Shimano Dura-Ace, Felt TTR3 Whees - $3,999
- Every level is also available in a 650C model.
Also new for the 2012 DA series are several new stem options. The 2011 version featured the adjustable-angle version similar to what we've seen on earlier Felt models, and that will still be available in 2012. But Felt is also offering six fixed-position stems which will probably be a bit lighter and sleeker, and allow users to attach 31.8mm bars to the bike. I like that idea, a LOT. And I can't wait to see the bikes in person. For now, enjoy these stock photos that Felt sent us of their bike lineup.
I particularly love the Womens's-specific paint scheme with the neon blue and purple. The geometry is the same, but the paint scheme is pretty snazzy. All of the paint schemes show off a lot of nude carbon, which is something I have loved about Felt's bikes for a long time. Felt has also updated its lower-end framesets, both the carbon B-series and aluminum S-series will still be available. We're looking forward to seeing more. Stay tuned!