Sun XCD (SXRD51MB) derailleur main image Sun XCD (SXRD51MB) derailleur main image Sun XCD (SXRD51MB) derailleur main image

It's a touch hard to make sense of Sun XCD. It appears to be a Japanese brand aimed squarely at that most Japanese of phenomena - the serious-minded, seriously-wealthy, seriously-stylish, retro bike market.

The story goes that Sun XCD was founded by Junzo Kawai in 2012. Junzo Kawai was the legendary President of SunTour Japan in its glory years. He is one of relatively few people who, after an absence, could, truly, return to the bicycle industry as an unchallenged hero. However, in 2012 he would have been a mere 92 years old and he died in 2014. I appreciate that Japan has an astoundingly long-lived population, and that elderly Japanese people are amazingly active - but I still struggle to imagine a 92 year old taking the leading role in founding a new company.

After Junzo Kawai's death, the new president of the company is his son-in-law, Tsugio “Taki” Takimoto, who is described as a longtime employee of SunTour Japan. Since SunTour Japan ceased trading more than 20 years ago, it is hard to imagine that Mr Takimoto will not, himself, be quietly dreaming of a pleasant, relaxing retirement. Perhaps I am, unjustifiably, projecting my own aspirations onto others.

Sun XCD produce a smattering of pleasantly designed, retro-style components presented in a fine silver anodised finish. Their emphasis is squarely on classic touring equipment, studiously avoiding the hysterical and overwrought worlds of road racing and mountain biking - as any mature, sophisticated, seasoned gentleman or gentlewoman would.

The Sun XCD derailleur is a long-pulley-cage beauty manufactured by microSHIFT, but, regretably, it has little to distinguish it from its, less-storied, microSHIFT bretheren except its sheer silveriness.

When SunTour collapsed in the 1990s, I believe that Junzo Kawai retained the rights to the red, triangular SunTour logo - and Sun XCD has adopted it as its own. It's good to see it back.

Sun XCD - web site 2014

Sun XCD - web site 2014

Sun XCD - web site 2014 image 1 thumbnail