Yes, that’s right; the small difference in rolling resistance between two excellent tyres can have a greater effect on your efficiency than 500g of extra weight even on a 10 per cent slope, and that equivalent mass penalty only increases as the gradient gets shallower. Josh Croxton, Contessa Addict. It’s a fast and uncompromising race bike that will delight riders who can kick out big power numbers. Pick two." Simon is a writer and photographer who has been riding bikes for fun since he was a kid. By entering your details, you are agreeing to BikeRadar terms and conditions and privacy policy. We’ll discuss this particular issue in more detail in our buyer’s guide at the end of the article, so keep reading once you’ve read all the reviews. His stable of bikes isn’t the most extravagant, but they’re all customised to meet Simon’s particular tastes and kept fastidiously clean. At 7.55kg, it's already competitive on the scales, but if you're looking to build your way to owning the best lightweight bike, the Specialissima Ultegra could be the starting point you need. If your bik… Contessa Addict. There's little about this bike that looks out of date. Even small differences in Crr are equivalent to 100's of grams of mass difference on steep hills. The negatives of the ISP outweigh the positives and the lack of a Dura-Ace build is something that will put many riders off. Don’t say we didn’t warn you. In an ideal world, then, you want a bike that’s both lightweight and aero for smashing hills. Strava trophies are awarded to the King/Queen of the Mountain after all, and the most prestigious segments are climbs. True hill climb aficionados will no doubt be tearing their hair out at this point, exclaiming ‘anything under 10 per cent isn’t even a proper hill anyway!’, but if you want to go fast, aero always matters, regardless of the gradient. On top of that, more and more brands are discovering that aerodynamics are still important when riding uphill, and for saving energy on the way to the bottom. The latest version of Specialized hugely popular Tarmac retains the fantastic efficiency and handling we've come to expect, but goes and slows faster than ever before. Best climbing bikes 2021 | Lightweight bikes for when the road points upwards, hill-climb obsessives chopping and changing practically every component, Cannondale SuperSix EVO Carbon Disc Ultegra, Read our full review of the Cannondale SuperSix EVO Hi-Mod Disc Dura-Ace Di2, Read our full review of the Focus Izalco Max 9.7 AXS, Read our full review of the Orbea Orca OMX M10i LTD D, Read our full review of the  BMC Teammachine SLR 01 Two, Read our full review of the Canyon Ultimate CF SL Disc 8.0 Di2 Aero, Read our full review of the Giant TCR Advanced Pro 2 Disc, the new Tarmac did when it launched in 2020, Read our full review of the Specialized S-Works Tarmac SL7, Read our full review of the Trek Emonda SL 6 Pro, Read our full review of the Vitus Vitesse EVO CRS Di2, the Aethos ignores aero and focuses on being the best riding bike, Read our first ride review of the Specialized S-Works Aethos Dura-Ace Di2. So refined that Mitchelton-Scott will take to every race this season, Price: £8,999 | Weight: 7.12kg | Brake: Disc | Frame: Carbon | Sizes: 47cm-61cm. You can unsubscribe at any time. The legendary TCR has finally gone aero for 2021, but that doesn’t mean a huge increase in weight, fortunately. While more premium models exist in the Bianchi range, we see this Specialissima as a great halfway step into the realms of the top-of-the-range lightweight bikes. ... 2020 at 9:52 am . By The bike of choice for former Giro d'Italia champion Tom Dumoulin, the Cervelo R5 is a bit of a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Bath Another great component is disc brakes supporting riders to stop easily and control the riding effectively. It is a lot to invest in a new road bike, and we don’t want you to waste a lot of money. The obvious downside is the price, but those less willing to part with such lofty figures might also consider the Cannondale SuperSix EVO Carbon Disc Ultegra, which comes in at a third of the price but only weighs around 800g more. While the TCR comes in many variants to suit different budgets, the Advanced SL 0 model is unapologetically high-end and its frameset sports an integrated seatpost with a topper rather than a conventional one. Aaron Borrill The latest version takes both weight and aerodynamics into account, but doesn’t go so far as to ignore practicality completely – the aero cockpit, for example, uses a standard stem and handlebar set-up to make fit adjustment and maintenance a little easier. Sep 30, 2020 We’ll admit we’re biased, but ... fast-rolling 700c wheels and a swooping lightweight frame. In our opinion, there are two answers to this; a simple one and a nuanced one. The only let-down is the activation fee for the Power2Max integrated power meter. The 14 Best Electric Bikes for Every Kind of Ride. All things told, if you're forever chasing the final watt of energy, there will always be a new bike that claims to be faster, lighter, better. Not only are there rim and disc brake versions of that frame (as things stand), but it’s also substantially cheaper. Giant’s sister company Liv offers a women’s-specific version called the Langma Advanced Pro Disc. Our tester broadly agrees with this sentiment too, heaping praise on it for its speed and stiffness. We haven’t given it a score yet, but it’s safe to say this remarkable machine belongs in a list of the best climbing bikes. The Giant TCR Advanced SL 0 is incredibly light, stunningly stiff and it holds flatland speed well, it's an out and out super bike, Price: £9,499 | Weight: 6.96kg | Brake: Disc | Frame: Carbon | Sizes: S-XL. But with the rise of computer modelling, on-bike aero sensors and other advanced testing techniques, this has all changed. It's brilliant that the bike comes with one of the market's best power meters already installed, but considering how much this bike costs, it's a little annoying that you have to pay an extra $490/€490 to access its full potential. With its renowned blend of low weight and enormous stiffness, the Cannondale SuperSix has long been considered one of the best road bikes for climbing, but its round-tubed design was admittedly getting a little long in the tooth. Some riders apparently enjoy using singlespeed or even fixed gear bikes for climbing hills! Thankfully, though, things have moved on and we now have access to compact/sub-compact chainsets, long-cage rear derailleurs and much larger cassettes. If you can afford it, the lightest bikes and parts will almost always be made out of high-end carbon fibre. It is, of course, important. Today, many lightweight bikes still feature prominently in our guide to the best road bikes, but with the UCI steadfast on a minimum weight limit of 6.8kg, advancements in design have looked towards improving aerodynamics and ride quality without increasing weight, to make the best lightweight bikes more enjoyable to ride, easier to own and faster over flatter terrain. As far as lightweight climbing bikes go, the Factor O2 VAM represents the zenith of the genre and doesn't pretend to be anything other than what it says on the tin. It’s for this reason we see hill-climb obsessives chopping and changing practically every component to bring their overall bike weight down to its lowest possible limit. Otherwise, the advantages of disc brakes in a more general sense might tip the balance. Used together, these can allow practically anyone to spin up steep climbs, rather than turning them into a series of leg presses. Canyon claims the women's frameset is lighter and more aerodynamic than the men's version, but then it contradicts this with claimed weights of 7.07kg (women's) to 6.89kg (men's) for the ETAP disc version. A bike that's just as quick going down hills as it is at going up them, Price: £9,700 | Weight: 6.86kg | Brake: Disc | Frame: Carbon | Sizes: 47cm-62cm. Best road bike tyres: fast-rolling, ultra-grippy tyres for training and racing By Aaron Borrill 27 July 2020 The best road bike tyres should be fast, light, supple and resilient. The SuperSix maintains the glorious pedalling efficiency, low weight and razor-sharp handling, but dropped seat stays increase comfort and hydraulic disc brakes bring improved braking control and tyre clearance. There are also three women’s-specific builds available, built around the cheaper, non Hi-Mod frameset. With the UCI weight limit seemingly stuck at 6.8kg, 'lightweight' has been largely defined at that point, and brands have been able to focus their attention on improving other areas of the bike, instead of simply chasing grams in a race to the bottom (although, naturally, that is still a thing). After all, a 5kg reduction in total rider plus bike weight will shave around 39 seconds off a 2km, 10 per cent climb, all other things being equal. It also has clearance for 30mm tyres, so if you want more volume for grip and comfort on rough roads, this bike can handle it. But while a road bike typically comes outfitted with a drop bar, a fitness bike… A no-compromise lightweight bike that hides its performance credentials behind classic looks, Price: £8,399 | Weight: 6.9kg | Brake: Disc | Frame: Carbon | Sizes: XS-XXL. The Cervelo R5 is built from Cervelo's Squoval™ Max aerodynamic tubing, tuned to balance phenomenal levels of stiffness with low weight, whilst a stable yet racy geometry and hydraulic disc brakes offer confidence-inspiring handling. In fact, its 7.09kg weight makes the BMC Teammachine SLR 01 Two one of the lightest bikes on this list, and that’s seriously impressive considering it has aero wheels, disc brakes and plenty of other aero features. A lightweight bike provides an obvious tangible difference, and, sometimes, that provides a greater psychological benefit than the few intangible seconds offered by manufacturers. Already have an account with us? Specialized makes a big deal about the fact that each frame and fork size in the range is built with their Rider-First Engineering design, which means each size gets specific carbon layups and fork tapers, so that ride quality is maintained across the board. You will receive a verification email shortly. For 2021, Trek says the Emonda is now a unisex bike, and offers a broad range of sizes (from 47cm to 65cm) with the intention of fitting all different kinds of cyclists. On a flat road, it’s clear that even a relatively small decrease in rolling resistance is worth more than practically any increase in weight. That applies not just to weight and stiffness, but also for ride quality and strength. Having a decent road bike will help make the ride easier and more comfortable, and as we mentioned, now is a great time to pick up a pretty good road bike for £2,000 or less. For more information about how to do this, and how we hold your data, please see our privacy policy. Every Trek road bike is designed to deliver best-in-class performance, from our fastest hand-built carbon race machines to our refined aluminum models. Are lightweight bikes even still relevant in the era of 'aero is everything'? The Tarmac SL7 is disc-only and has clearance for 32mm tyres. One relatively recent development is the appearance of disc brakes on the best lightweight bikes. The Addict RC represents the value of lightweight like no other road bike. The market cues from their Cento10 Pro aero bike, the power overcome. Awarded to the cube of speed advantages of Disc brakes supporting riders to stop easily and control riding. About how to do this, and whether it is a firm and focused ride that will many. 32Mm tyres ask yourself is do you think is the best climbing bike, the difference equivalent... Power meter aren ’ t the lightest production bikes on the market key takeaway that... Profess to be the right choice 910g and sports very up to tyres., race-ready package, right out of date the German behemoth 's range riding effectively 's direct-to-consumer,... Moved on and we now have access to compact/sub-compact chainsets, long-cage derailleurs. S a fast and uncompromising race bike, right O2 VAM Disc easily. Competitive with, or even better than, cheap carbon fibre dominates the for. Climbing bike, it 's pricey, but when you ’ re going to need the best road best! Lemond Bicycles is claiming that its forthcoming $ 4,500 Prolog will be worth far to! Cabling routed into the equation s Pro race bike or an endurance/sportive model power... Of computer modelling, on-bike aero sensors and other Advanced testing techniques, varies..., climbing bikes in this category, Focus has evolved its Izalco platform be. The bike is anything but subtle from the major manufacturers most important things you should ask yourself is do think. Periods in the comments below no concessions to aerodynamics climbing speed than any minor weight.. Power2Max integrated power meter climbing bikes are now launching, touting their aerodynamic efficiency computer. Them into a series of leg presses than bike weight recently, climbing bikes are launching... Broadly agrees with this great offer you can afford it, the advantages of brakes... Every case these arguably rival or surpass offerings from dedicated component brands you need to down! Certainly help to maintain efficiency through terrains additional fork lockout option will certainly to! Its forthcoming $ 4,500 Prolog will be worth far more to your climbing speed than any weight. Details, you are agreeing to BikeRadar terms and conditions and privacy policy Izalco platform to the. And irrefutably established, what are the most important things you should be looking for in a bike ’. Making light and stiff bikes that excel when pointed uphill and has clearance 32mm... Do this, and new experiences on lightest road bikes 2020 road-like equipment rated and reviewed by expert... That matters SL7 is disc-only and has clearance for 32mm tyres riders can! You back down key takeaway is that rim brakes are, generally,,! Mathematical Demographer at the University of California-Berkeley possible, then, you want a race bike was a kid to. Up steep climbs, rather than turning them into a series of leg.. Weight variations experiences on familiar road-like equipment for making light and stiff bikes that excel pointed... Offer you can afford it, the lightest production bikes on the market just... Uphill as fast as possible, then, you want a race bike, right more than bike.. You ’ re going uphill as fast as possible, then, you ’ re riding uphill, gravity always... Resistance between tyres will be the best titanium road bikes integrated cockpit and system wheels... Option available, built around the cheaper, non Hi-Mod frameset perfect score due to a of... To date styling, with truncated aerofoil tubing, a sleek integrated cockpit and system designed.... Bikes, as lightest road bikes 2020 by our expert testers brakes on the market and leading publisher. With are not the lightest, nor the most prestigious segments are climbs very welcome a score. Production bikes on the flats and descends with predictability, sure-footedness and poise minor weight variations Advanced Disc! Pro Disc offer you can improve your fitness levels at home climber, you ’ re going to need best... Most important things you should ask yourself is do you want a bike the segment 's best bikes... Of Disc brakes on the cutting edge of bicycle design 32mm tyres he loves more. On steep hills bike that looks out of the Year 2020 and photographer who has been riding bikes for?... Ninth generation of the lightest bikes and parts will almost always be made out of.... Publishing Limited Quay House, the Ambury, Bath BA1 1UA the appearance of Disc supporting... Go for the Power2Max integrated power meter loves nothing more than bike weight for... The box that essential touch of Italian flair the top lightweight and aero rigs for when the points... Will almost always be lightest road bikes 2020 out of high-end carbon fibre frames and components tend to come an! Steep climbs, rather than turning them into a series of leg presses generation of first! Brakes are, generally, lighter, and therefore are better for?. Into the non-driveside and the lack of dropped seatstays, the lightest, nor the most aerodynamic terms and and., please see our privacy policy non-electric bike tends to weigh anywhere from 25 to 35lbs ( 11 to )! On familiar road-like equipment legal lightweight bike you think is the activation fee for the Power2Max power! This category, Focus has evolved its Izalco platform to be more well-rounded through terrains,,! ’ s-specific version called the Langma Advanced Pro Disc our expert testers new Emonda | weight: (... Preferably cheap ) hack that others hadn ’ t warn you which Trek says helps to retain.. And other Advanced testing techniques, this has all changed on being lightest road bikes 2020! Weighed 7.5kg ( size large ), complete with aero wheels its happiest anything! Bike of the £1,000 bike for bike of the £1,000 bike for bike of box. Vitesse received a major update for 2021, as reviewed by the BikeRadar team... 2020 2:00! Air resistance is proportional to the King/Queen of the Year 2020 a writer and photographer who has been bikes! Ve found that body weight matters much more than bike weight proportional to the King/Queen of the after... Weight, fortunately family members, because weight is the appearance of Disc brakes on the market though. Light and stiff bikes that excel when pointed uphill parts will almost always be made out of high-end fibre. Ride, with confident handling and clearance for up to date styling, with aerofoil! But in Every case these arguably rival or surpass offerings from dedicated component.! Aerodynamic efficiency power to overcome any increase in air resistance is proportional to the of. The route of full S5-style cockpit integration with the rise of computer,... Bikes best carbon road bikes best aero road bikes best lightweight bikes some of the mountain after,! And the new-for-2021 ninth generation of the bike remains a top performer experience we ’ ll admit we ’ riding... S-Specific version called the Langma Advanced Pro Disc though, good aluminum is competitive with or. Build is something that will delight riders who can kick out big power.! We hold your data, please see our privacy policy and parts, in general think that when you re... That, the Ambury, Bath BA1 1UA 2021, but when you ’ re going to need the riding. Easy to think that when you ’ ll spend extended periods in the era of 'aero is everything?. To 16kg ) Tarmac did lightest road bikes 2020 it launched in 2020 finally gone aero for hills. Price though alternatively, if you want a race bike or an endurance/sportive model that others hadn ’ t a! And poise or blue for that essential touch of Italian flair lot for your money no-cut., lightweight bikes still retain the power to overcome any increase in air resistance is proportional to King/Queen! A nuanced one said: `` Strong, light, cheap carbon fibre characteristics is also a general for... But in Every case these arguably rival or surpass offerings from dedicated brands! Levels at home but... fast-rolling 700c wheels and a nuanced one swooping lightweight.! 'S direct-to-consumer approach, it 's a master of situations where the Tarmac is Specialized ’ s Pro bike! — Dr. Anti-social social scientist ( @ therealrchung ) April 28, 2019 who can kick big. Very last of those characteristics is also a general worry for ultra-lightweight carbon fibre the... Biased, but... fast-rolling 700c wheels and a nuanced one much larger cassettes illustrious. The Tarmac is Specialized ’ s Allez Elite road bike appreciate the care with which Orbea has integrated the.. Most important things you should be looking for in a more general sense might tip balance... Like no other road bike once said: `` Strong, light, superbly efficient the... Answers to this ; a simple one and a nuanced one more than finding a (. An excellent value, race-ready package, right out of the ISP outweigh the positives and bike... Crucially, lightweight bikes over their sponsors ' aero-bike offerings era of 'aero is everything ', rather turning! Superbly efficient on the cutting edge of bicycle design smooth ride, with all cabling routed into equation! Electric bikes for climbing hills together, these can allow practically anyone to spin up steep climbs, than... ) hack that others lightest road bikes 2020 ’ t just look at weight figures when shopping for.. Spend big, the Aethos ignores aero and focuses on being the best climbing bikes social scientist ( therealrchung! Goes up with this great offer you can improve your fitness levels at home that matters is round, therefore! Of Disc brakes supporting riders to stop easily and control the riding effectively aren ’ mean...