Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

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Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby Shpox » Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:08 pm

Full Article here including the full list of bikes tested. It doesn't look like they've made their test videos quite public yet.

The guys tested bike between the ~2-3.5k range.

Winner: Giant Defy Advanced 2 - [Press fit, 105, Giant P-SL1 WheelSystem].

Runner's up included:
Focus Cayo Evo 4.0 - [PF30, Ultegra, Fulcrum WH-CEX 6.5]
Storck Scenero G2 - []
Trek Domane 4.3 - [BB90, Mainly 105, Bontrager]
Boardman SLR/9.0. - [BB30, Sram Force, Ksyrium Equipe]

What is everyone's comments?

For me, Trek & Giant and weren't unfamiliar to last year's shortlist either, they're very good bikes and I think for many, it's no surprise to see Giant moving closer to using its own name brand parts on bicycles. Obviously the shootout might not take into consideration aesthetics which has been a passing issue for Giant for some time now. What was interesting to see is Storck back up as well as Chris Boardman's range, especially considering Gold Cross cycling stocks them exclusively up here in Queensland now. I'm really happy to hear Focus still in shortlist being last years winner over their excellent frameset from the Izalco. I think this manufacturer needs a lot more attention here in Australia. Cube's GTC seems to have disappeared from this years list (despite its great componentry, it's still quit heavy) while BMC's SL01 still hasn't received much praise from these guys at this price range. Cannondale's Synapse/Supersix also seems to be aloof but given the warranty discussion here on BNA after the last two weeks, that might not be such a bad thing for us here in Australia. Probably not an issue for Cannondale given the success of the CAAD10. Many Euro brands missed the list which might be due to their price premiums.

Other bikes I think are a worthy mention are Specialized's Tarmac Sport, Cube's Agree GTC & the Scott CR1 Team Carbon.I think the aero trend is going to continue into the mainstream market for everyone except the mountain goats. It seems to be a choice that makes sense given the omnipresent effects during rides, especially if we start seeing lightweight aero frames being designed for the mainstream market.

Obviously, the modern day road bike market is quite competitive and sometimes it's hard to go wrong. I guess something to keep in mind, Cycling Plus seems to focus a the best all round package so a ride specific bike can easily miss out in their short list. :mrgreen:
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by BNA » Fri Mar 01, 2013 5:31 pm

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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby tubby74 » Fri Mar 01, 2013 5:31 pm

Just put deposit on a cayo 4.0 this week and had looked at pretty much this same list. The cubes have downgraded parts over last year. Whilst they've dropped prie to suit they are not as nice
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby AndyRevill » Fri Mar 01, 2013 6:22 pm

Having recently bought a Domane (4.5 rather than the 4.3) it's good to see it high on the list. I can vouch for the fact it's a nice ride - I love it to death :D

Andy
Trek 1.7 dec.
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby Shpox » Fri Mar 01, 2013 6:51 pm

tubby74 wrote:Just put deposit on a cayo 4.0 this week and had looked at pretty much this same list. The cubes have downgraded parts over last year. Whilst they've dropped prie to suit they are not as nice


Ah lucky you. Be sure to let us know how it rides. The one thing I wish Focus has kept though was their Stealth look from the last year, but still a class bike. Interesting to note about the Cube. The blokes at ride magazine gave it a very odd review but I think it came down to their unfamiliarity with the brand. Their build quality and drivetrain choices for the price are great, but you're indeed correct, they might be going down the Merida approach by offering generic-branded brakes/seatpost/seat to keep the cost down. It's something I don't appreciate at all as I always believe a newer product should be better in every way that its predecessor, not worse.

Andy, I've actually never ridden a Trek road bike but I've seen nothing but good things to hear about them, even in lower price ranges. :mrgreen:
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby Snagdog » Fri Mar 01, 2013 7:01 pm

It's a shame to see Cube downgrade their product. 2011 and 2012 were well specced for the price point.

And obvisiouly cafe cred wasn't taken into consideration
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby AndyRevill » Fri Mar 01, 2013 8:03 pm

Shpox wrote:[

Andy, I've actually never ridden a Trek road bike but I've seen nothing but good things to hear about them, even in lower price ranges. :mrgreen:


Without wanting to start an argument, I think there's a bit of inverse snobbery around Trek in Oz and I'm sure recent events won't help. I bought my original Ally 1.7 mostly because I like the LBS but it was a nice bike to ride. However the Domane is a whole different league.

Try one, you might enjoy it :D
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby jasonc » Fri Mar 01, 2013 9:29 pm

Shpox wrote:It's something I don't appreciate at all as I always believe a newer product should be better in every way that its predecessor, not worse.


most brands do it - BBs, cassettes, chains, cranks, seats, posts, bars, stems
if they can save a buck and still display it as "ultegra" or "sram red" they'll do it

e.g my fuji came with ultegra everything except brakes.
all the contact points are fuji's home brand "oval"

if you want an out and out bike go 1 of 2 ways:
buy a frameset (they all offer them) and put the bits you want on them
or buy a chinarello and go nuts.
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby melbnut » Sat Mar 02, 2013 11:40 am

Parlee z1 for me
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby Mulger bill » Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:22 pm

That Volagi MichaelB is building up 8)
...whatever the road rules, self-preservation is the absolute priority for a cyclist when mixing it with motorised traffic.
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby jasonc » Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:24 pm

Mulger bill wrote:That Volagi MichaelB is building up 8)


as long as he builds me one too (heck, he can buy me the bits and I'll build one for myself if he likes)
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby eeksll » Sat Mar 02, 2013 8:11 pm

its interesting that the giant uses a full 105 group set except chain. Seems they are using KMC chains on all the bikes I perused. Did GIant buy KMC?

I am not extremely familiar with all the bikes, but are they ALL carbon frames?
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby Shpox » Sun Mar 03, 2013 12:15 am

eeksll wrote:I am not extremely familiar with all the bikes, but are they ALL carbon frames?


Yes they all are. Aluminum seems to dominate under the 2k mark usually. Titanium makes a presence here and there but usually isn't a mainstream retailer frame material. Steel is still around but usually at even lower price points. You're really paying for weight (or the lack thereof) rather than the inherent properties of a frame material.
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby Xplora » Tue Mar 05, 2013 10:53 am

Trek IS responding quite well to changes in the market - they aren't cranking out copycat frames, they are continuing to innovate (the Domane is a pretty big one considering the competition). They are doing enough to make it look like they are trying to be better than the rest, and that's all you can really ask for. I'm undecided about what I would buy if I did it again... Venge, Domane, Madone, they'd all be on my list of try outs.
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby jasonc » Tue Mar 05, 2013 11:03 am

Xplora wrote:Trek IS responding quite well to changes in the market - they aren't cranking out copycat frames, they are continuing to innovate (the Domane is a pretty big one considering the competition). They are doing enough to make it look like they are trying to be better than the rest, and that's all you can really ask for.


but they are a groupset down in their pricing comparing to other brands (e.g. Giant)
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby thejester » Tue Mar 05, 2013 6:37 pm

Treks leave great room to customise your bike.
They understand the consumer disease of Upgraditis and out of concern they allow for Upgraditis to be sated relatively inexpensively compared to other brands.
Note however that the important bits, like shifters are usually the highest specced part of a Trek.
Trek appreciate that the first thing every bike buyer does is upgrade the wheels, in order that you really get the most noticeable improvement from your wheels Trek provide an aesthetically appealing wheelset purely to get you out of the shop and around just long enough for your new wheels to be purchased and built/delivered. Even Shimano r500's seem to roll like Zipps after the base Bontragers :D
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby Xplora » Tue Mar 05, 2013 7:17 pm

Jester, I think you're being too kind... underspeccing a bike is being cheap, it's not providing room for upgrades :lol:

I think Trek understands they are in the business of selling bikes, not groupsets. Most will really struggle to get their 105 to fail. Mine is going OK with a few thousand on the clock. My ultegra is going OK as well... I hear what you are saying jason, but your ride is in the frame, not the gears, and Trek sells frames.
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby jasonc » Tue Mar 05, 2013 8:01 pm

Xplora wrote: I hear what you are saying jason, but your ride is in the frame, not the gears, and Trek sells frames.

and a nice frame at that. my brother's 4.5 madone is a great ride. but for the price a lot of other manufacturers sell ultegra (e.g. giant). my bike, fuji was ultegra and cheaper than most trek's
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby Xplora » Sat Mar 09, 2013 9:19 am

^^^ But that's ultimately part of their brand proposition, isn't it? You can pick up Ultegra Colnagos and other pricey brands for even more than the Trek. The group is a constant price, the expense has to be the wheels and the frame.
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby RonK » Sat Mar 09, 2013 9:32 am

People actually read Cycling Plus?
Cycle touring blog and tour journals: whispering wheels...
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby sumgy » Sat Mar 09, 2013 10:31 am

All I can say is that Cycling Plus needs to lift it's sights a little if that is their top bikes. :shock:
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby Baldy » Sat Mar 09, 2013 3:20 pm

sumgy wrote:All I can say is that Cycling Plus needs to lift it's sights a little if that is their top bikes. :shock:


Did you see the pricepoints mentioned?

Probably a heap of others that could be in the list but I think what they have is fair.

I have 3 Treks and what Jason says is true enough, they are not the cheapest. Same thing could be said about Specialized[which is my other bike and only carbon bike]

I won the Tarmac in a raffle but if I had 3.5k to spend on a bike, I'd get the best Venge frame/fork in that price range. But that's just me, it would be for racing and all the racing I do is sub 80km. I like the way they look and the geo suits me.
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby Shpox » Sat Mar 09, 2013 6:43 pm

RonK wrote:People actually read Cycling Plus?


People read lots of things both online and offline. In the meantime, I'd be happy to take a look if you wrote up your own list.
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Re: Cycling Plus bike of the year - but what's yours?

Postby high_tea » Sat Mar 09, 2013 8:20 pm

Shpox wrote:
RonK wrote:People actually read Cycling Plus?


People read lots of things both online and offline. In the meantime, I'd be happy to take a look if you wrote up your own list.


I prefer the advice of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young to that of Cycling Plus, FWIW.
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