CERVÉLO R5 DISC £7299 › The Cana­dian in­no­va­tor’s lat­est Grand Tour ma­chine

Cycling Plus - - ROAD TEST -

The new R5 launched last year, and saw suc­cess with a stage win in the Giro d’Italia un­der­neath Di­men­sion Data’s Omar Fraile. The disc ver­sion came a lit­tle later than the rim brake re­vi­sion, with Cervélo hop­ing this new gen­er­a­tion R Se­ries flag­ship will con­tinue the mod­els’ suc­cesses which be­gan in 2003, with the R2.5 win­ning stages with Carlos Sanchez and Tyler Hamil­ton and Fabian Can­cel­lara win­ning ParisRoubaix on the R3 bike in 2006.

Lightweight for big climb­ing days, com­pli­ant enough to cope with the cob­bled clas­sics, the R5 has al­ways been the aero-op­ti­mised S5’s – as rid­den by Mark Cavendish and Steve Cum­mings – sim­pler, more un­der­stated cousin.

Cervélo has re­vised the ge­om­e­try on the R5, mak­ing it more race ori­en­tated, with the stack drop­ping by 8mm and get­ting a lit­tle longer reach. Frame stiff­ness has in­creased over the pre­vi­ous ver­sion, and sees the in­tro­duc­tion of Cervélo’s Squo­val Max tube shap­ing – the shape blends a square tube pro­file with ovalised corners and curved sides, top and bot­tom; the Max de­notes the im­prove­ments made in these struc­tures in terms of weight, stiff­ness and aero­dy­nam­ics. The big­gest sur­prise comes in the weight, with the R5 Disc frame just 831g, lighter even than its rim-brake coun­ter­part (850g).

The R5’s de­tails shine through, Cervélo has adopted Fo­cus’s bril­liant RAT sys­tem, this fast re­lease thru­axle with its T-bar end and quar­ter­turn lock and un­lock is among the best. Cervélo has taken the de­sign, re­worked the ad­just­ing nut to make it a lit­tle more min­i­mal, changed the de­sign of the threaded base (to which the T-bar locks into) and changed the lo­ca­tion of the spring to give a lit­tle more re­sis­tance.

Cervélo has part­nered with ENVE for the R5’s wheels, and it’s a fine

choice with the 3.4 Discs. ENVE varies the depths of its rims, so the rear is deeper at 42mm for max­i­mum aero­dy­namic ben­e­fit, and the front is shal­lower at 38mm for more sta­bil­ity in cross­winds.

The equip­ment on the R5 is what we’d ex­pect, with Dura-Ace Di2 again fill­ing the du­ties on shift­ing and brak­ing, with 160mm ro­tors front and rear the brake feel is spot on. The sad­dle is Fizik’s well­re­garded Antares, but only the base model R5. As sad­dles are a per­sonal choice we don’t mind that it’s not a car­bon-railed fancy edi­tion as it may get swapped. The tyres are Con­ti­nen­tal’s Grand Prix rather than the flag­ship GP4000 S IIs but they feel sim­i­lar, sup­ple, grippy and proved tough through test­ing. The new lower front end doesn’t feel overly slammed on our 58cm bike, in fact it feels just right for a bike we’d be happy to ride all day, ev­ery day.

The R5 Disc com­bines a taut feel with pos­i­tive power trans­fer, and rock-solid rigid­ity when push­ing hard on the flat, sprint­ing or head­ing up­hill.

Sit on the sad­dle, get up on the hoods and push over poorly sur­faced roads and the R5 is im­pres­sively smooth, the D-shaped car­bon post, with its long, laid-back head, of­fers heaps of com­pli­ance.

On de­scents you’ll come away im­pressed. Steer­ing re­sponses are quick enough to make rapid di­rec­tion changes yet sta­ble enough to con­trol the bike with sim­ple weight shifts and the slight­est steer­ing in­puts.

Below Square plus oval tube shap­ing equals Squo­val - ob­vi­ously Bot­tom Cervélo’s own-brand stem and bar com­plete the cock­pit setup

Cervélo has re­vised the ge­om­e­try on the R5 to be­come more race ori­en­tated

The R5 Disc com­bines a taut feel with pos­i­tive power trans­fer

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.