Wal-Mart Launches Viathon, a New Direct-to-Consumer Bike Company

Canyon Bikes changed the game with its direct-to-consumer model that allows it to sell high-end bikes at much lower price points. Recently DiamondBack, Raleigh and others have also jumped into the mix. Today, Viathon launched as a new direct-to-consumer carbon bike company. And they’ve got big backers. Wal-Mart holds the trademarks to the Viathon brand name.

The company’s launch includes three bikes: the G1, R1 and M1 for, aptly, gravel, road and mountain biking, respectively. The bikes look pretty good on paper, and the price points are very slim for what you get.

The Viathon Lineup

Viathon is hitting the market with three model families. The R.1 is a true road racing bike, the G.1 is for gravel and the M.1 hardtail is for cross-country riding. All three models are made of carbon fiber and each has a few build options ranging from mid-level to top-of-the-line. Framesets are also available.

The frame designs are original and come from industry veteran Kevin Quan, who has worked with brands like Cervélo, Diamondback and Pivot in the past.

Viathon R.1

The R.1 disc road frame has a claimed weight of just 795 grams for a 56cm size. It has all the standard features; aero-ish tubes, teeny seatstays, internal cable routing, a tapered steerer, and clearance for big 28mm tires.

The top-of-the-range model comes built up with Shimano’s mechanic Dura-Ace groupset, Knight Composites carbon clinchers and a Zipp carbon cockpit for a retail price of $5,850. The entry level model built with Shimano 105 demands just $2,300. That’s just $300 more than the bare frameset which comes in at $2,000.

Viathon G.1

The gravel oriented G.1 frame weighs in at just about 1,000 grams and sports a dropped-chainstay design which will accommodate 700c tires up to 51mm in width. Or you can throw on 650b tires up to 2.1″ in size. Typical to gravel form, the frame has flattened tubing, slim and dropped seatstays, and is tuned for a smoother ride. Also included are hidden rack and fender mounts, mounts for three bottle cages, and a threaded bottom bracket for increased serviceability.

Again, pricing is very reasonable. The top-end G.1 Force model will cost $3,550 with a SRAM Force 1 groupset and HED Ardennes LT aluminum clinchers. The least expensive G.1 comes with Shimano 105 and costs just US$2,300. A frameset is $2,000.

Viathon M.1

Finally, the M.1 hardtail sports pretty typical cross-country geo, a 120mm-travel suspension fork, dropper-post compatibility, and room for 29×2.4″ tires. The most expensive option of the group, $6,000 will buy a top-spec M.1 built with SRAM’s XX1 Eagle groupset, Stan’s NoTubes Crest CB7 Carbon Pro carbon wheels, a RockShox SID RLC fork, and FSA cockpit. With SRAM GX1, Stan’s NoTubes Arch S1 Team wheels, a RockShox Reba RL fork you can get riding for just US$2,400. Again, a frameset is $2,000.

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