SRAM’s Volvo, Car of The Week

March 13, 2013– Fort Lee, NJ

By Jen Benepe

The new Volvo SRAM neutral support vehicle, getting ready for take off this morning at 6 AM from New Jersey to Chicago, IL.

Jose Alcala, who provides neutral support for SRAM in professional bike races, picked up a brand new Volvo Polestar XC70 and support motorcycle this week from Providence, RI.

He is driving it back to Chicago, where SRAM is based, but on the way stopped by for a quick visit to New York City.

So we got a chance to check out his new wheels, all six of them.

The Volvo, which is the latest 2013 model of the Polestar XC70 is super fly.

First of all, we absolutely love the graphics job by their marketing team. It screams “bike racing,” and the red, the black, and the little frogs are  in your face fresh, even though we’ve seen them many times before.

Waiting for the deli to open (they were late!) we checked out this gorgeous car-motorcycle combo under the parking lot lights

Getting into the car for a spin around the corner to the deli, I immediately wanted to drive with Alcala all the way to Chicago, and then on to Texas, and California where he will be providing neutral support for pro bike races, among them the  Amgen Tour of California from May 12 to 19.

Besides the totally updated dash with GPS, there is touch start and stop ignition–and very comfortable but cleanly-styled interior seats, plush but not too plush, with seat heating in both the front and the back (good for all those cold behinds in a wet bike race,) and a sun roof in the front.

Immediately, I was thinking of switching my allegiance from Subaru, a previously unthought of concept.

For one, they’ve gotten rid of the clunky, elongated shape of the older models, and perhaps even borrowed a bit from Subaru. The result is a clean, mean, but safe driving machine–my type all the way.

The sporty interior was only slightly marred in my opinion by the shorter and more tightly angled front window. I might get used to it if I could drive the car myself for at least 50 miles.

But the car handles like a dream, not luggish and heavy on the turns, even though its solidity seems to verify the legendary safety of the car.

Alcala, who drives thousands of miles every year supporting bike races across the country said he’s so spoiled by the Volvo handling he doesn’t want to drive another car.

The motorcycle’s SRAM design makes it look race-ready, and even a girlie-girl like me wants to get on and go.

Check out Alcala’s tweets at

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