Giant is rolling out their new OverDrive 2 headset/steerer tube standard across 47 road and mountain bike models in their 2012 lineup. The steerer tube on OverDrive 2 tapers from 1 1/2" on the bottom to 1 1/4" on top. Giant says that increasing from 1 1/8" to 1 1/4" on the top resulted in a 30% stiffness increase at the handlebars, with no weight penalty thanks to decreased wall thickness of the new steerer. The 1 1/4" steerer tube and associated bearings bearings fit into headtubes on older Giant models designed with 1 1/8" tapered steerers, so upgrading to the new standard is a option for Giant owners.
To date RockShox, Fox and Marzocchi are on board and providing suspension forks with compatible steerer tubes. At this point, all of the bikes sport Giant house-branded stems, but more component makers are likely to jump on board as the new standard gains traction. OverDrive 2 is an open standard, with no proprietary technology involved, so other bike-makers could follow suit.
During our stop at the Giant booth at the Outdoor Demo, we spied Giant’s Contact Switch Remote Seatpost, which comes in 30.9mm diameter by 400mm length and retails for around $300. We requested a sample for test, so look for a review in print in an upcoming issue of Dirt Rag.