I find it awesome too
On the PR6000 model:
Highly refined professional roadbike by Panasonic of Japan. Full Tange Prestige tubing. Lugged constuction, handbrazed with silver. 28.6mm diameter tubing for full front triangle for added stability in sprinting, cornering and descending. Own investment cast frameparts.
Panasonic is very well known as electronics company, but they have also been devoted to bicycle manufacturing since around the the 50s of the last century. From the early 80s on Panasonic sponsored a pro road race team. The Panasonic team had evolved from the TI Raleigh team. While Panasonic itself already carried a wide line up of bicycles with among them really fine examples through the 80s, the team still competed on bikes from established names like Raleigh, Merckx and Colnago.
In a recent Tour de France aftertalk on Dutch television ex Panasonic team pro Henk Lubberding explained about the beginning of the PR6000 team bicycle. For 1990 Japan were give the honour of organizing the Worlds and this made the Panasonic company -possibly the largest conglomerate ever involved in bicycle manufacturing- decide to finally get an own thoroughbred ready for the team. The bike had to be used not only for the Worlds event, but also in all European pro races the upcoming years. Lubberding and head mechanic Jan Legrand were flown into Japan and extensive testing was done. Varying tubing, diameters and angles all with the aim to create the best ride for the European courses. The result was the PR6000 that made its appearance in 1990. In the last year before its appearance the Colnagos used were often actually PR6000s prototypes in disguise.
The production PR6000 was sold as complete bike only, equipped with full Dura Ace. The US market never had the oppertunity to welcome the PR6000 as by '89 Panasonic had withdrawn from the US market due to skyrocketed Yen. In Holland the purchase of a PR6000 set you back 6998 guilders in 1991.
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_________________official OW 2010 Concours de Elegance jury member
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