Happy 85th birthday Ernesto Colnago! Ernesto Colnago has reached the milestone of eighty-five years. From this immense joy and excitement comes a bike, yet another masterpiece from a lifetime of inventing and creating bicycles. It’s called Colnago Ottanta5 Limited Edition – a custom-made jewel built around the C60, a unique and inimitable bike frame, handmade one by one.
Even the paint is done by hand – airbrushed in a gloss-silver color with arabesque lugs and decorations. The logo on the head tube and seat tube is the first Colnago logo created in 1954. Ottanta5 will be available in a limited edition of only 85 pieces.
The frame is made from high quality carbon and will use the star shaped tubing and lugs first found on the Master frame. The Ottanta5 will feature Campagnolo Super Record EPS, Bora Ultra 50 wheels. The Colnago Ottanta5 Limited Edition will retail for $12,500.
In 1952, when aged only 20, Ernesto Colnago handed in his notice at the Gloria bike factory to set up on his own in Cambiago, his small hometown to the north-east of Milan. The premises measured no more than 25sqm and Colnago was indebted to his father for cutting down the family mulberry tree to provide wood for his workbench. A keen racer himself, Colnago was soon building wheels for some of the best Italian racing cyclists of that era, including Giorgio Albani, the multiple stage winner of the Giro d’Italia, and the legendary Fausto Coppi.
No rider did more for the brand than Eddy Merckx, who won just about every major title after he joined the Molteni team riding Colnagos in the early 1970s. Merckx’s haul included the Tour de France, the Giro and the spring Classics. In perhaps his most celebrated collaboration with the brand, ‘The Cannibal’ also obliterated the world-hour record in 1971 on a bespoke bike that Colnago developed using a titanium stem, drilled chainrings and alloys that were so advanced they had to be made in the United States because the technology required was not available in Europe.
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