The man himself, Mr Alessandro Brambilla Colnago.
The name Colnago needs no introduction in the world of cycling. Many older cycling enthusiasts would have owned a Colnago steel bike at some point and younger fans are still awed by their classic workmanship on their more recent and modern bikes.
You must be thinking how Alessandro Colnago, the marketing manager of Colnago is related to the legendary Ernesto Colnago. Alessandro Colnago is Ernesto Colnago’s grandson. Alessandro has been the marketing manager for Colnago for the past 5 years and according to him,
“The (Colnago) brand needs to be younger”.
Although the Colnago brand has been around for at least six decades, Alessandro feels that the love for Colnago need not be just for the older cycling enthusiasts. In a world in which social media is increasingly pervasive in everyday lives, businesses and companies, including Colnago need to be able to engage their clients, fans and supporters, especially the younger and more technologically-savvy ones. With that in mind, Alessandro has started an official Colnago Facebook page which has generated almost 19,000 likes to date which allows fans, enthusiasts and supporters to share photos and information of their Colnagos, old or new. Alessandro continues to say that such platforms allow Colnago to get feedback, suggestions and ideas from fans, so that the company can continually improve and stay relevant. As he aptly summed it up:
“The first most important secret is listening”.
When asked about how Colnago can continue to maintain its classic appeal and a long history coupled with a modern approach to business, Alessandro tells us that Colnago will combine the classic touches such as the lugged construction for top models such as the C-59 with new vibrant colors. It is all about retaining the classic ‘feel’ of a Colnago bike with a modern twist.
The modern approach is not just skin-deep; it is also about introducing new technologies and possibilities in the world of cycling. A new product which can attest to that is the C59 Disc road bike, which features a full hydraulic front and rear disc brake system with a completely redesigned fork, chain stays and seat stays to handle the increased braking load. Although it is relatively new in the market, the introduction of hydraulic disc brake systems on road bikes offers several advantages: increased safety by giving consistent braking power regardless of conditions, reducing braking reaction time and better brake modulation, especially for long descends/downhill sections.
The Colnago C59 Disc.
Another new and exciting venture for Colnago is the introduction of mountain bikes into their product range, the C29, a 29er hard tail mountain bike utilizing Colnago’s well-known carbon lugged frame technology. The very same bike has already won 2 world championship titles this year: the mountain bike relay title and women’s junior title.
The Colnago C29.
We thank the folks at Rodalink for arranging this short interview and Mr Alessandro Colnago for sharing his insights with us!
L to R: The writer, Alessandro Colnago & Eddy, GM of Rodalink.