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Model history – Litespeed Ultimate road frame

The Ultimate was the 2nd road frame model Litespeed launched, dating back to 1991.  The Ultimate, as the name implies, was a flagship model for Litespeed, showcasing Litespeed’s design innovations. During its initial years, the Ultimate was made from 3/2.5 titanium, but later Litespeed employed a blended 3/2.5 and 6/4 titanium tubeset.

The design evolution and geometry/weight specs that ensued between 1991 and 2006 (when it was dropped from Litespeed’s model line-up) are as follows.

Note: the information below was culled from Litespeed marketing materials, which show inconsistent information over time. I have highlighted the year-to-year changes in design and/or specs. Please comment on omissions and discrepancies below.

1991

  • Tapered top tube
  • Tapered and ovalized DT
  • Curved seattube
  • Integrated seatpost binder bolt
  • Braze-on front derailleur clamp
  • 48cm to 62cm, 2.5 to 3.5 lbs

1993

  • Tapered/butted 3/2.5 tubing
  • 68mm BB, machined from 6-4 solid bar
  • 48cm to 62cm, 2.2 to 3.5 lbs

1994

  • 48cm to 60cm, 2.4 to 3.3 lbs

1995

  • 48cm to 62cm, 3.12 to 3.55 lbs

1996

  • no changes

1997

  • Cold-worked, tapered/butted 3/2.5 tubing and bladed 6-4 downtube
  • Radially-curved seatstays for vertical compliance
  • 49cm to 63cm, 3.24 to 3.92 lbs

1998

  • no changes

1999

  • Standard seatpost clamp
  • New cable-stop adjusters near headtube
  • 49cm to 63cm, 3.25 to 3.95 lbs

2000

  • Cold-worked, 3/2.5 geometrically enhanced tubing (GET) with 6/4 aero-bladed downtube
  • Curved cut-out on seattube for rear tire
  • Engraved bottom-bracket shell
  • Sculpted dropouts
  • Custom Litespeed stainless steel seat collar
  • Cold-worked dual-bend radially-curved seatstays
  • Braze-on (bottom pull) front derailleur clamp
  • 27.2mm seatpost diameter
  • 1-1/8” headtube
  • 49cm to 63cm, 3.4 to 4.08 lbs

2001

  • Taller headtube
  • Custom option: internal cable routing for front-derailleur

2002

  • 1-1/8″ integrated headset design
  • LiteTEC Titanium Enhanced Carbon seatstays

2003

  • 49cm to 63cm, 3.4 to 3.9 lbs

2004

  • New cold-worked 3Al/2.5V shaped top tube
  • New oversized 6Al/4V tapered, diamond-shaped down tube
  • Oversized seat tube (31.6 seat post)
  • High-profile shaping of the new 3Al/2.5V chainstays
  • Standard seatpost clamp
  • LiteTEC HP Enhanced carbon seatstays
  • 49cm to 63cm, 3.1 to 3.5 lbs

2005

  • no changes

2006

  • Blended 6/4-3/2.5 Titanium tubeset
  • Flared-diamond toptube
  • Massive down tube with ovalized triangle cross-section
  • Seattube transitions to transverse flat oval at the base (requires custom front der. clamp–included)
  • Billet titanium replaceable rear derailleur hanger
  • Reverts to non-integrated headset design
  • 49cm to 63cm, 2.38 to 3.00 lbs

3 Responses to “Model history – Litespeed Ultimate road frame” Leave a reply ›

  • . What did this bike cost in 2006 new?

    . What is the market value of that same 2006 model today?

  • Profile

    The 2006 Ultimate frame had a $4000 price tag, I believe, just like the similarly priced Ghisallo and Vortex frames of the same year. I think $1500 would be a fair price today for an ’06 Ultimate. Of course, if you could find the frame in the right size on eBay, you could likely do even better.

  • Bought a used 1993 Ultimate with 1998 Campy Record Carbon gruppo in 2010 on EBay.
    1700 bucks.

    Since outfitted with SRAM Red and Mavic Ksyrium Elite.

    Very, very happy with this bike. Stiff, but supple; fast and great handling, a beautiful object. My lifetime bike.

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