First review - here goes nothing
EMC2 Etape' Pro 2008
Stock photo from emc2 website
Where bought and price
Johns Cycles, Nobby Beach $1800 in June 08, now retails for around $2599 I beleive.
How it is used
Used 3-5 times per week approx 800k/month for training rides from 30-120k in length and low level club racing. It's done about 6000k's all up.
Alloy frame w/ Carbon fork & seat stays. All 105 except for brakes which are EMC2. Compact cranks w/ 12-27 cassette. Tyres changed to conti gatorskins. FSA shallow drop bars. Seat changed to Selle italia flite (w/ cutout). Fulcrum racing 7 wheels. Changed bartape to black.
+ Complete 105 drivetrain and shifters
+ Shallow drops - good for sprinting and less of a stretch to get down on them
+ Wheels are bombproof - excellent for training
+ Compact gearing - great for climbing and learning to spin
- Seatpost is carbon wrapped not straight carbon as the description may lead you to beleive
- No name brakes
- Shallow drops - can't get as aero as normal drop bars
- Stock EMC2 seat got too flexy after about 3000k
- I had a terrible run of punctures w/ the stock tyres (conti ultrasport)
- White bartape gets dirty pretty easily
This was my first roadbike and apart from the negatives outlined above it's been great. Shimano 105 has been completely reliable and looks great. I've crashed it (AT) 50kph and the frame is still straight as an arrow. A good bike for starting out up to club racing as crashing it won't break the frame (hopefully) and/or the bank! Things you may want to change are saddle, brakes, bartape and tyres. I've never ridden a CF bike so can't compare ride quality but the ride is good enough and as much as can be expected from an alloy/CF frame - you definitely get a bit jarred on very rough roads, but nothing a little HTFU can't take care of. The stock bartape w/ gel inserts is great comfort wise but gets dirty very quickly if you ride w/o gloves. The compact cranks and 12-27 are great for climbing, there's no shortage of spin, you'd probably want higher gearing for flatter races. This bike has been passed onto my mum (she's loving it!) as I'm upgrading to a full CF EMC2.
All in all a solid, reliable ride ideal for anyone looking to get into training and/or club racing.
Performance Compact gearing won't be ideal for serious racing but otherwise a great performer for beginner - intermediate riders
Value for money