This article compares the Canyon Ultimate and Orbea Orca.
I’ll help you understand the bike model lineups, specifications, and suggested retail prices in USD. I’ll explain the carbon fiber technology (Canyon Carbon Fiber and Orbea Monocoque (TorayCa) Carbon) and innovative frameset technologies on each bike.
The objective is to provide you with a clearer understanding of Canyon Ultimate and Orbea Orca.
|Canyon Ultimate||Orbea Orca|
|Type of bike||All-rounder||Lightweight, all-rounder|
|Frame material||CFR carbon|
CF SLX carbon
CF SL carbon
|OMX (T1100) carbon|
OMR (T800) carbon
|Frame sizes||XXS, XS, S, M, L, XL, XXL||47, 49, 51, 53, 55, 57, 60|
|Groupset||Shimano, SRAM (12-speed)||Shimano, SRAM (12-speed)|
|Brakes||Hydraulic disc||Hydraulic disc|
|Price (USD)||$3,999 to $9,999||$3,599 to $11,599|
The Canyon Ultimate is an all-rounder bike. Canyon claims that the Ultimate has an unrivaled stiffness-to-weight ratio, debunking the myth that a lightweight bike is not stiff enough to perform at the highest levels of cycling.
It’s the bike the pros rode to two World Championships and three Grand Tours wins in recent years with Alejandro Valverde, Nairo Quintana, and Richard Carapaz.
The flagship model, Canyon Ultimate CFR is the latest addition with the lightest setup weighing 6.52kg. The Ultimate CFR has the best electronic shifting groupsets from SRAM or Shimano. Next in line is the CF SLX weighing 6.98kg, and CF at 7.6kg.
|Model||Frame material||Groupset||Wheelset||Retail price (USD)|
|Canyon Ultimate CFR eTap||CFR carbon||SRAM Red eTap AXS||Zipp 353 NSW||$9,999|
|Canyon Ultimate CFR Di2||CFR carbon||Shimano Dura-Ace Di2||DT Swiss PRC 1100||$9,499|
|Canyon Ultimate CF SLX 9 Di2||CF SLX carbon||Shimano Dura-Ace Di2||DT Swiss ARC 1100||$6,999|
|Canyon Ultimate CF SLX 8 Di2||CF SLX carbon||Shimano Ultegra Di2 (R9200)||DT Swiss ARC 1400||$5,499|
|Canyon Ultimate CF SL 7||CF SL carbon||SRAM Rival eTap AXS||DT Swiss P 1800||$3,999|
Canyon Ultimate vs others
The latest Orbea Orca was launched in mid-July 2023, during the last week of the Tour de France.
Compared to its predecessor, the 2024 Orbea Orca is a lot lighter (832g previously vs 750g for a size 53 frame). This is achieved using a traditional-looking, round tube frame without the dropped seat stays seen on the majority of road bikes today. At 6.7kg for the top-of-the-line M11eLTD PWR model with SRAM Red AXS, it’s among the lightest, disc brake road bikes available today, alongside the likes of Cannondale Supersix Evo LAB71 and Cervelo R5.
Like many other Orbea models, the Orbea Orca offers a lot of customization options for the riders, thanks to the MyO configurator. There are 11 models available with either Shimano or SRAM electronic shifting groupsets. The models with PWR indicate it comes with a power meter, the LTD models use the highest grade OMX carbon.
|Model||Frame material||Groupset||Wheelset||Retail price (USD)|
|Orbea Orca M11eLTD PWR||OMX (Toray T1100) carbon||SRAM Red eTap AXS||Oquo RP35LTD (carbon)||$11,599|
|Orbea Orca M10iLTD PWR||OMX (Toray T1100) carbon||Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 (R9200)||Oquo RP35LTD (carbon)||$11,599|
|Orbea Orca M21eLTD PWR||OMX (Toray T1100) carbon||SRAM Force eTap AXS||Oquo RP35LTD (carbon)||$7,999|
|Orbea Orca M20iLTD||OMX (Toray T1100) carbon||Shimano Ultegra Di2 (R8100)||Oquo RP45LTD (carbon)||$6,999|
|Orbea Orca M31eLTD||OMX (Toray T1100) carbon||SRAM Rival eTap AXS||Oquo RP45LTD (carbon)||$5,999|
|Orbea Orca M31iLTD PWR||OMX (Toray T1100) carbon||Shimano 105 Di2 (R7100)||Oquo RP45LTD (carbon)||$5,999|
|Orbea Orca M21eTEAM PWR||OMR (Toray T800) carbon||SRAM Force eTap AXS||Oquo RP35TEAM (carbon)||$6,899|
|Orbea Orca M21iTEAM||OMR (Toray T800) carbon||Shimano Ultegra Di2 (R8100)||Oquo RP35TEAM (carbon)||$5,999|
|Orbea Orca M31eTEAM||OMR (Toray T800) carbon||SRAM Rival eTap AXS||Oquo RP35PRO (alloy)||$4,699|
|Orbea Orca M35i||OMR (Toray T800) carbon||Shimano 105 Di2 (R7100)||Oquo RP35TEAM (carbon)||$4,599|
|Orbea Orca M30i||OMR (Toray T800) carbon||Shimano 105 Di2 (R7100)||Oquo RP35PRO (alloy)||$3,599|
Orbea Orca vs others
Canyon vs Orbea carbon fiber
Canyon Carbon Fiber (CF)
Canyon’s innovative approach to bike design includes the utilization of advanced carbon fiber technology, resulting in performance-oriented bicycles that offer remarkable strength, reduced weight, and improved ride quality.
Canyon employs three main types of carbon fiber in their range of bikes; CFR, CF SLX, and CF SL, each offering unique benefits to cater to your needs and budgets.
- Canyon CFR (Canyon Factory Racing) Carbon is the top-tier carbon fiber used by Canyon, designed for maximum performance. Bikes built with CFR carbon are the lightest and stiffest in the Canyon line-up, favored by professional racers and serious enthusiasts alike. The CFR series represents the pinnacle of Canyon’s engineering prowess and innovation, employing state-of-the-art materials and advanced manufacturing techniques.
- Canyon CF SLX Carbon is a step below CFR, but it still offers exceptional performance characteristics. It used to be the highest-grade carbon in Canyon’s arsenal until the introduction of the CFR series. Bikes with CF SLX carbon frames provide a perfect balance of weight, stiffness, and comfort, making them highly versatile for a range of riding conditions.
- Canyon CF SL Carbon is the entry-level carbon fiber in Canyon’s range, but it still offers excellent performance. While it doesn’t quite match the extreme weight savings and stiffness of the CFR and CF SLX grades, CF SL frames are still impressively light and stiff, providing excellent performance for the value. Ideal for cyclists who desire a high-quality, performance-oriented bike without breaking the bank, the CF SL series is a testament to Canyon’s commitment to delivering value and performance.
Orbea Monocoque (TorayCa) Carbon
Orbea uses carbon fiber from TorayCa in their bikes. It’s one of the handful of bike manufacturers that uses a monocoque carbon fiber construction, resulting in a lighter and stiffer frameset. The two most prominent types of carbon used in Orbea’s bike frames are OMX (T1100K) and OMR (T800) carbon.
- OMX (Orbea Monocoque X) carbon is Orbea’s top-grade carbon fiber, with the ultimate blend of stiffness, lightness, and strength. Monocoque refers to a type of construction technique where the external skin supports the structural load, which, when applied to bike frames, results in a balance of strength and weight. Due to its high manufacturing cost, OMX carbon is typically reserved for Orbea’s top-tier models.
- OMR (Orbea Monocoque Race) is the standard carbon composite used by Orbea. While OMR doesn’t match the absolute performance capabilities of OMX, it offers a fantastic performance-to-value ratio. This makes it a great choice for riders looking for top-notch performance without the premium price tag of the top-grade OMX carbon.
Frameset technologies and innovations
Canyon Ultimate and Orbea Orca framesets incorporate advanced technologies to enhance their bikes’ performance and ride characteristics.
Here’s an overview of the technologies used in each bike model.
|CFR Carbon||Canyon Factory Racing (CFR) Carbon is the highest-grade carbon fiber used by Canyon. It’s designed for ultimate performance, with CFR carbon frames being the lightest and stiffest in Canyon’s range. This carbon is employed for the most performance-driven models in Canyon’s lineup.|
|Pro Geometry||Pro Geometry is Canyon’s design approach that tailors each bike frame’s size with specific tube dimensions and carbon layups, optimizing performance and ride characteristics for riders of different sizes. This ensures that every rider, irrespective of their size, enjoys a consistent and optimal cycling experience.|
|Adjustable Cockpit CP0018||The Canyon Ultimate CFR and CF SLX feature the innovative Cockpit CP0018, designed for aerodynamic efficiency and versatility. With fully internal cable routing, it offers a clean look and enhanced aerodynamics. The unique wing design allows for easy bike packing, eliminating the hassle of dealing with internal routing. |
Its innovative width adjustment feature lets you switch between narrow, medium, and wide settings (390-430mm) using just one tool. It provides a total adjustment range of 40mm (+/- 20mm on each side), allowing you to fine-tune your fit for comfort and efficiency.
|Ultimate System Complete||This design principle ensures that the Canyon Ultimate is developed as a complete system, incorporating frame, fork, seat post, stem, handlebar, and even spacers into the design process. The goal is to maximize performance and rider comfort, making the Ultimate a highly-efficient and enjoyable bike to ride.|
|Aero Testing||Canyon uses cutting-edge technologies and tools to achieve aerodynamic efficiency, including wind tunnel testing and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD). |
These tools help them simulate and analyze airflow over the bike, enabling Canyon to refine the design for optimal aerodynamics. Canyon’s rigorous testing approach ensures the Ultimate offers superior aerodynamic performance.
|Monocoque Carbon Construction||Monocoque carbon construction is a process that uses the most advanced carbon technology to create the most sophisticated bike frames possible. Monocoque means that the frame is made of a single piece of carbon fiber, rather than multiple pieces joined together. This ensures that the frame is lighter, stiffer, and stronger, as there are no weak points or excess material. |
Orbea has two grades of carbon fibers; OMX (Orbea Monocoque X-Light) and OMR (Orbea Monocoque Race). Orbea also uses a bladder molding technique with EPS (expanded polystyrene) forms and PU (polyurethane) inserts to prevent wrinkles and gaps in the carbon layers, which can compromise the quality and durability of the frame.
|ICR Plus||This stands for Internal Cable Routing, which is a system that routes all the cables neatly through the bar, stem, and headset for a clean look and improved aerodynamics. ICR also makes it easier to maintain and service the bike compare to other bike brands’ solutions.|
|Powerspine||Powerspine is a frame design technology that enhances the stiffness and power transmission of the bike. The Powerspine is the lower spine of the frame that handles the large majority of torsional and lateral loads. This means that the frame is stiff in the right places, which results in direct power transfer to the rear wheel and more efficient pedaling. |
The Powerspine also contributes to the lightness and aerodynamics of the Orca, as it eliminates unnecessary material and reduces drag.