Kestrel, a company formed by a group of ex-Trek Bicycle Corp. employees, set out in 1986 to revolutionize performance bicycles. When the Kestrel 4000 was introduced, it was the first commercially available bicycle frame completely made of aerodynamic carbon fiber tubing. Although carbon fiber, a super-lightweight, and strong material, had been utilized in smaller bicycle parts, this design set a precedent for what became a standard in today’s performance bicycle production. The Kestrel 4000 was also the first bicycle frame designed using finite element analysis (FEA), a computerized method that predicts how the frame will react to physical forces such as vibration, heat, air flow, etc. This then cutting-edge methodology, a customary tool today, aided in the study of wear and allowed designers to perfect the frame.
Kestrel’s innovative approach to bicycle manufacturing made them one of the biggest names in cycling; however, all this innovation came with a hefty price tag! The Kestrel 4000 earned the nickname “the dentist’s bike” as only wealthy and professional cyclists could afford them. Today the bikes sell for $3,179- $10,599 depending on components (2017).
Designer/builder: Kestrel USA
Country of Origin: Santa Cruz, California, USA
Weight: 9527g/ 21lbs.