Apidura x Canyon: Simplicity and Precision
Collaborating with Canyon is a natural extension of our long friendship and, with shared values of simplicity and precision, we knew the resulting packs would be special. Read on to find out how the Apidura x Canyon packs, designed for the Canyon Grizl, showcase the best of Apidura and Canyon’s shared values.
Canyon was one of the first bike manufacturers with a direct-to-consumer sales model – all the way back to the ‘90s, when customers had to send off an order form for a catalogue. Just as at Apidura, that direct contact with customers means unfiltered feedback, resulting in a process of continual incremental improvement and constant optimisation of existing bikes and processes, while also helping make the next generation even better.
In getting to know Canyon over the years, it’s become clear that we share very similar design philosophies, with Canyon telling us that “our strength is the interplay between designers, engineers and product managers. Most of our designers have strong technical or engineering backgrounds, which really comes across in our products – it’s cliché to say but every form has a function. The simplicity in our designs is actually very difficult to achieve, there’s far more thought that goes into it than you might imagine, but it’s also the reason there’s such a strong Canyon product identity.”.
This approach is summed up by Canyon’s brand values – simple, precise, dynamic – words, that closely mirror our own ‘less is more’ and precision-crafted focus. Indeed, the separate journeys of our companies closely mirrored each other even before they became intertwined in recent years, with a joint history of innovation and a willingness to do things differently to push the sport in new directions.
With so much good competition out there these days, you can’t be afraid to stick your head above the parapet and try something different. Take our first gravel bike, the Grail with its Double Decker Bar. Here was a fresh approach to riding, so we took a fresh approach to design, which got a lot of people talking! If you don’t just focus on the cockpit though, that bike is so beautifully balanced across the board when you ride it, whatever surface you’re on. It’s that approach to an entire system and not just one feature that people perhaps don’t see at first sight, but they notice as soon as they start riding.
In the same way that Apidura forever changed the bikepacking market by developing the world’s first fully waterproof bikepacking bags way back in 2016, Canyon’s influences in bike design can be seen throughout the cycling world and it’s no surprise to us that so many of our ambassadors are also Canyon riders. The combination of lightweight technical bikes and luggage has proven a winning combination time and again.
With the launch of the Grizl, Canyon came to us with the opportunity to create a set of packs that fully showcased the bike’s performance-oriented design and perform under the tough conditions the bike is designed to thrive in. While any number of our packs could fit the Grizl, with its focus on speed and the rougher end of the gravel spectrum, we knew that the packs would need to be a blend of our Racing and Backcountry Series, offering an opportunity for us to bring together the highlights of each series in a new and exciting way.
We’re past the point now of philosophising “what is gravel”? It’s fully established and its appeal is so broad, whether you come from mountain biking, road riding, or are brand-new to cycling. That’s why we’ve taken the leap and expanded our Gravel offering with the new Grizl. Nobody ever complained about solid, well-designed and engineered products that can do a bit of everything – in bike terms, the Grizl is just that.
Mixing our Racing and Backcountry Series meant bringing together speed, durability and capability without sacrificing the elements of what gives each series its’ strengths. From the Racing Series, we took the pack silhouettes, the lightweight, performance-oriented and quick access design features. From the Backcountry Series, the abrasion resistance, internal tie-downs to reduce rattling and ruggedised design elements that help the packs weather rougher terrain even better.
The resulting packs are not only perfectly tailored to fit the Grizl, but also match the bike’s ability to shine over an hour-long pre-work spin or a 200-mile gravel race. The minimal, low profiles mean the bags don’t get in the way over shorter rides, freeing up jersey pockets and keeping weight off riders’ backs and the advanced technical features mean they shine over long gravel races and bikepacking trips. Abrasion-resistant panels in high wear areas guarantee riders can push the Grizl as hard as possible and mud-resistant zips and easy-access waterproof openings guarantee the conditions stay on the outside, where they belong. Inside, tie-downs and enhanced padding keep belongings safe and ensure that even over the roughest terrain, all you can hear is the hum of tires and the wildlife around you.
Our ambassador, Jenny Tough, is one of the first riders in the world to try the Apidura x Canyon Packs on the Grizl and thinks it sums up Canyon’s approach perfectly: “it’s an extremely fun bike – the perfect harmony of freestyle off-road riding and hard-charging performance.” When we asked what she thought of the collaboration, Jenny told us “it’s great to see Apidura and Canyon teaming up like this. Both brands have some crossover in their culture and the way they have built their businesses, being young-ish brands that have seen huge success by doing things in a way that favours their customers and making best-in-class products. The Apidura x Canyon collaboration, to me, shows that both brands are interested in inspiring ‘ordinary’ cyclists who want to explore, not just focusing on the tiny elite demographic of pro riders that so much of the cycling industry obsesses over.”
Asked how the Grizl performs as a bikepacking bike, Jenny told us “the Grizl was made with bikepacking in mind, and it’s exactly what I would look for in my style of exploring – it is equipped to take luggage throughout the frame and forks, has clearance for a good amount of rubber, but is still lightweight and comfortable. I would say it’s a bikepacking bike for ‘cyclists’.”