Sram rival vs force

Hi all,
Looking at getting a new aero road bike and likely to be SRAM group set. I’ve only ever had Shimano (generally tiagra) but have used Sram couple of times on friends’ bikes.

The new bike can have either Sram rival or force full groupset, difference is extra £200 for Force. Is it worth it? I could also wait until have Ultegra in stock but will be several months and extra £200 more than Force.

Any opinions? I know Sram more popular in USA than Europe so thought people on here may have more idea.

Also, would a Shimano (say 11 speed 105) chainset work fine with otherwise all Sram force or rival (2x11 speed) group set, so Sram shifters and FD?

Talking about 2x11 speed hydrolic disc throughout.


I dont think you would notice much difference in the shifting or braking of Rival vs Force. I have had both and both feel the same to me. The big difference in Rival has an aluminum crank and Force is carbon…worth the extra $.

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I have Rival hydro 1x and don’t have any problem with it. It just works :slight_smile: and breaks work maybe better than DA.


I believe the pull ratios for Shimano and SRAM are different, so wouldn’t mix/match shifters from one with the other manufacturer’s derailleurs. If you really want to try it, I think there are after-market cams you can get that adjust the throw … but I’d just stick with whole group set from the same maker.

The shifters and derailleurs would both be SRAM, just crankset would be shimano

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What @craigmanning said above - I have both and don’t think there is a noticable difference in shifting or braking - it’s more important that the derailleurs are set up properly.

The Force cranks are a good deal lighter than the Rival ones, so that’s worth having. I think you should be ok with Shimano cranks too - supposedly the sram chainrings match the sram chain better, and thus shift better, but I can’t see that making much of a real world difference again. (The Shimano cranks are way uglier and you need more tools to install, so no idea why you would want to do that anyway :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:).

Can’t decide if worth extra cash or not. Much differencei n feel etc?

I have a left arm crank power meter so if I change to a Shimano crankset I can put my PM on it when I want (I swap my PM between my different bikes as all rest are shimano)
Appreciate I’d have to change bottom bracket too.

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That makes sense, I do the same with my Stages.
Also PMs for shimano tend to be cheaper.

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No difference in feel, just looks carbon and is lighter.

I changed my force cranks for a rival ones once because that was cheaper than new chainrings and matched my old PM. I’ve niw gone back to the carbon one, but don’t notice any difference when riding.

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But if most of weight difference is crankset…and I change that to Shimano anyway…

In that case, go with rival, you’re not missing anything really. You can also mix and match later and eg put a force derailleur or calipers on.

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I’ve got 2x10 rival and force on a couple of bikes. I can’t feel the difference, but maybe that’s because the force shifters are paired with an Apex RD…

Oh, and they’re tied to rival rim brakes on one vs TPR cantis on the force…

Do you race? If so, gearing range and spacing matters. I’d put together a spreadsheet looking at the mechanical advantage of each of the gear combinations within each ring.

Similarly, while I enjoy my Di2 on my endurance bike (Roubaix), the speed of shifting of the cassette in my AXS on my racing bike (S-Works Tarmac) has been great for both racing and spirited group rides. I’m not sure if there are similar differences between Rival and Force, but it may be worth investigating if this is important to you.

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Gearing will be same regardless or can be changed so not worried about that.

Should mention here that Rival wireless is coming out soon.

Specialized is releasing a new “Comp” line with the new Rival AXS etap. This will be specd on the Tarmac SL7, Roubaix and Aethos frames. All 3 models are launching on April 15. Price is $4800 and is available for pre order now with official launch on Tuesday at noon. I can’t send pics out but do have pics at the store if anyone wants to see them. They are avail to tier 1 dealers (which is me) and will ship early April to go along with product launch on April 15

Having used Sram rival , Red and Shim Ultegra, both are great !! But I will go for Shim now, smoother, chain very silent. On the other hand SRAM is very frank especially when you shift down, you’ll hear a nice “shlac”

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Well out of my price range I imagine!

Looking forward to Rival wireless, it could be my great for my TT if it 's “affordable”