Is OPEN U.P. EKAR Splendid? – [OPEN U.P. EKAR Review]

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  • Price: $5,900
  • Frame: Carbon
  • Tires: 700c
  • Gear: 1 × 13

What we like about it: Top-of-the-line carbon frame with high-end components maximize the performance of this bike and thus attract the attention of many riders.

What we don’t like about it: The design without droppers and the inability to adjust the center of gravity quickly when climbing and descending.

Rating: (4.8/5)


The OPEN U.P. EKAR has a top-quality carbon-frame with excellent components.

The gravel bike enjoys a lighter weight than other bikes in its class. The excellent frame geometry provides agile and comfortable handling.

Below, we will analyze the riding experience, key features, components, and specifications as well as other versions of this bike.

Additionally, at the end of the review, we will also compare several best bike models. If you want to know more about bike reviews, don’t hesitate to follow us.

Riding Experience

The OPEN U.P. EKAR is a gravel bike with a paint job that I like, and a top-notch carbon-frame with excellent components make for the light weight and agile handling.

For this reason, I packed my gear and booked a trip to the Lewis & Clark Trail on Skyscanner.

The main bike path here consists of paved roads and unpaved rail trails, with occasional small sections of gravel and a gentle grade.


I was riding the OPEN U.P. EKAR, a very light gravel bike. The light pedaling feel combined with the excellent geometry allowed me to maintain my center of gravity very well, and on this gently sloping surface it was as easy as riding on a flat road. I didn’t feel like I was struggling to pedal at all.

Next, the Campagnolo Ekar 38T cassette and the Campagnolo Ekar 9-42T 13-speed flywheel had a wide range of speeds, and the single cassette design was more convenient and easy to operate.

I kept on adjusting the speed during this long uphill ride. Thankfully, the Campagnolo rear derailleur responded quickly without any delay.

In conclusion, I can say that the OPEN U.P. EKAR is a gravel bike that I can enjoy climbing, for it regards the gentle slopes just as flat roads.


I was riding the OPEN U.P. EKAR on a long descent and the inertia allowed me to reach a very high speed without having to pedal.

This was also because the Campagnolo Ekar hydraulic brakes with 160mm discs had great braking power.

These hydraulic brakes did not overheat and lose braking power with my continuous braking.

Next, I took the OPEN U.P. EKARPirelli on the descent. The Cinturato Gravel H 700x40c had excellent grip on the outer tire and only part of the outer tire touched the ground when I pushed sideways, but it still held the ground firmly.

This also gave me much confidence on fast descents.

Gravel pavement

After I rode to the gravel road, OPEN U.P. EKARPirelli’s excellent carbon frame and carbon wheelset filtered some of the vibration bumps by creating some slight deformation during the bumps.

In addition, the rear lower fork that bent downward could also filter some of the vibration.

Although this bike did not have any suspension design, it still achieved some shock absorption function through frame shape and excellent material.

Finally, the shorter rear wheelbase combined with the ENVE SES AR Road handlebars provided nimble handling on the corners of the trails, making me able to ride the trails with ease.


OPEN U.P. EKAR offers 4 sizes (S to XL) of carbon frame and wheels with 700C carbon wheelsets, which have the ability to reduce vibration on bumpy sections with the slight deformation of carbon, giving the rider a variety of options and a lighter, more comfortable ride.

The internal cable routing of the bike and the design of the silent cable tube make the appearance looks neat and tidy while reducing the noise when riding on bumpy roads.

Next, multiple mounting holes at the top and bottom tubes increase the bike’s loading capacity so it can handle longer rides.

Lastly, the OPEN U.P. EKAR’s latter downward-curved rear fork shortens the wheelbase of the rear wheel for more agile handling and absorbs some of the vibration from the filter.

Other versions

The OPEN U.P. EKAR is a gravel road bike that is lightweight and has very good climbing and descending ability.

But for riders looking for more intense trail riding, OPEN has a gravel bike that is more suited to that type of rider.

For this purpose we also offer a gravel bike in a different series.

It has the internal cable routing design and carbon frame coupled with more trail-oriented components, making it available for more intense trail riding.

OPEN WI.DE. Force eTap AXS/Eagle AXS

OPEN WI.DE. Force eTap AXS/Eagle AXS
OPEN WI.DE. Force eTap AXS/Eagle AXS

OPEN WI.DE. Force eTap AXS/Eagle AXS and OPEN U.P. EKAR are both different series of gravel road bikes under OPEN.

Compared to the comprehensive performance of the rear bike, the former is more inclined to complex road riding, which uses SRAM Eagle XX1 AXS top mountain bike kit with a dry and crisp shifting feel and strong rear derailleur tension.

Most importantly, the Schwalbe G-ONE Allround 45mm (700c) or 2.25″ (650b) large grain outer tire provides better traction on the road, while the wider outer tire can also filter out road vibrations and is less prone to punctures.

Thus, a gravel road bike that can handle more complex roads will also be more suitable for riders who enjoy off-road riding.

Below, we will list the specific parameters of the OPEN U.P. EKAR in detail and some other brands of gravel bikes with similar prices for your reference.

What do we like about it?

  • Excellent frame and light weight make the pedaling easier, so for a long-distance riding you are less likely to strain.
  • Top-of-the-line components can maximize the performance of this bike and attract the attention of many riders.
  • Unique downward-curved rear fork design can absorb some of the bumpy vibration of the road.
  • Carbon frame with internal cable routing design makes the appearance looks more neat.
  • Silent cable tube design helps reduce noise generation during the ride.
  • With multiple mounting holes, the vehicle has a strong loading capacity, thus supporting long-distance riding.

What don’t we like about it?

  • No dropper design for quick center of gravity adjustment while climbing and descending.


  • How much does this bike weigh?

It uses a top-quality carbon frame and suitable components to make it weigh only: 8.2kg.

  • Is it suitable for long distance riding?

It has a lot of extended mounting holes to improve the loading capacity of the vehicle, so it is suitable for long-distance riding.

  • How to choose the right size for this bike?

Here we provide you with a size chart, but of course you do not have to follow this standard. The best way to find the most suitable size is to test ride.

Rider heightSIZE
157cm – 173cmS
170cm – 181cmM
177cm – 191cmL
188cm – 201cmXL




ForkYour choice, U.P.: 8.2kg (Medium, 700c, with inner tubes), WI.DE.: 8.2kg (Medium, 700c, with inner tubes), U.P.P.E.R.: 8.0kg (Medium, 700c, with inner tubes) tubes)
Bottom BracketCampagnolo Pro-Tech BB386EVO
Headsetincluded in your frameset of choice
StemENVE Road, 80 (S)/90 (M)/100 (L)/110 (XL)mm
HandlebarENVE SES AR Road, 40 (S)/42 (M)/44cm (L&XL)
Saddlefi’zi:k Tempo Argo R5-150mm, black
SeatpostENVE 0-offset, 27,2, 300mm


Rear DerailleurCampagnolo Ekar 13-speed
CrankCampagnolo Ekar 170mm (XS/S), 172.5mm (M), 175mm (L & XL)
ShiftersCampagnolo Ekar hydraulic
CassetteCampagnolo Ekar hydraulic
ChainCampagnolo Ekar hydraulic
BrakesCampagnolo Ekar hydraulic with 160mm rotors


RimsHED Emporia GA Pro 650b, HED Emporia GA Pro 700c, ENVE AG25 gravel 700c
TiresPirelli Cinturato Gravel H 700x40c, Vittoria Peyote/Barzo 27.5×2.1″

Comparison Table

BicyclesClick ViewWheelsetFrameBrakeDriveline
Specialized Diverge Expert CarbonClick View700c CarbonCarbonHydraulic Disc1 × 12 Electronic
Giant Revolt X, Advanced Pro 1Click View700c CarbonCarbonHydraulic Disc1 × 12 Electronic
Canyon Grizl CF SLX 8 eTap SuspensionClick View700c CarbonCarbonHydraulic Disc1 × 12 Electronic
Lauf Seigla – UltimateClick View700c CarbonCarbonHydraulic Disc1 × 12 Electronic

OPEN U.P. EKAR VS Specialized Diverge Expert Carbon

Specialized Diverge Expert Carbon
Specialized Diverge Expert Carbon

The OPEN U.P. EKAR and Specialized Diverge Expert Carbon are both gravel road bikes with top-notch capabilities in every aspect.

They both use a carbon frame with internal cable routing. This also gives these two gravel road bikes a aesthetically pleasing look and makes them more likely to attract the attention of riders.

In terms of drivetrain, the two bikes use Campagnolo Ekar 13-speed kit and SRAM GX Eagle AXS 12-speed kit respectively, both with powerful shifting capabilities.

But the former has faster speed and a smoother feel, while the latter, due to the electronic shifting, cuts out a lot of the inaccurate shifting that occurs from aging cables.

Finally, both bikes have similar geometry and are nicely painted. No matter which bike you choose, you won’t regret.

Learn More: Is Specialized Diverge Comp E5 Worth Buying? [Specialized Diverge Comp E5 Review]

OPEN U.P. EKAR vs Giant Revolt X, Advanced Pro 1

Giant Revolt X, Advanced Pro 1
Giant Revolt X, Advanced Pro 1

The OPEN U.P. EKAR and the Giant Revolt X, Advanced Pro 1 are both gravel bikes with different advantages.

The strength of the former is its light weight and smooth pedaling power, which reduces physical effort on long rides and flat road cruising to go further.

The latter has strong off-road performance, with 40mm of shock-absorbing fork travel and a dropper design, giving it an edge on complex road rides.

In terms of drivetrain, both kits are equally good, with the Giant Revolt X, Advanced Pro 1’s SRAM GX Eagle AXS kit shifting crisply and quickly, and the OPEN U.P. EKAR’s Campagnolo Ekar 13-speed kit feeling silky-smooth.

So if you want a more relaxed ride, the OPEN U.P. EKAR would be a good option. For a rugged challenge, the Giant Revolt X, Advanced Pro 1 would be better.

Learn More: Is Giant Revolt Advanced Pro 0 Worth Buying? – [Giant Revolt Advanced Pro 0 Review]

OPEN U.P. EKAR vs Canyon Grizl CF SLX 8 eTap Suspension

Canyon Grizl CF SLX 8 eTap Suspension
Canyon Grizl CF SLX 8 eTap Suspension

The OPEN U.P. EKAR and Canyon Grizl CF SLX 8 eTap Suspension are both excellent gravel road bikes from their respective brands, both with lightweight carbon frames coupled with powerful-performance components.

The latter, paired with a Rock Shox Rudy Ultimate fork with 30mm of damping travel, filters out some of the vibrations of unpaved roads.

The former bike enjoys its light weight with the design of shorter rear fork that has flexible handling.

Together with Campagnolo Ekar’s drivetrain and brake components, it further stimulates the performance of this bike.

In short, both are excellent gravel road bikes. The former have better all-round performance, whereas the latter is better able to cope with complex roads.

Learn More: Is Canyon Grizl CF SL 8 Suspension 1by Worth Buying? [Canyon Grizl CF SL 8 Suspension 1by Review]

OPEN U.P. EKAR vs Lauf Seigla – Ultimate

Lauf Seigla - Ultimate
Lauf Seigla – Ultimate

Comparing the OPEN U.P. EKAR with the Lauf Seigla – Ultimate, the latter bike has a technical look, especially the Lauf Grit 3rd gen Carbon fork and the light weight to achieve 30mm of damping travel.

But I have some doubts about the sturdiness and durability of this fork, and its damping effect does not feel very stable during the ride. 

However, it is equipped with SRAM Red electronic shifting components and brake components, which are the mainstream of the excellent kit and boast remarkably good performance.

The OPEN U.P. EKAR, on the other hand, applies a traditional gravel road bike layout with a core of rugged reliability and durability combined with a lighter ride feel.

This, in line with the excellent performance components, makes it an impeccable gravel road bike in any way.

Finally, these are two gravel road bikes at similar prices. If you like something new, then the special shape of the Lauf Seigla – Ultimate will suit you, but the OPEN U.P. EKAR is the choice that you certainly can’t go wrong with.


Here is my ride review of the OPEN U.P. EKAR.

In our opinion, it’s a gravel bike, with its perfect kit, that brings you a light riding experience. That’s why we gave it a 4.8 rating.

Of course, if you’re interested in exploring other similar bikes, we have reviewed a variety of bikes at different price points that you might find interesting. Feel free to check out our other reviews as well.

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