Thinking about buying a new aero bike

I’ve been going through a pretty rubbish time recently (my mum is in the final phases of cancer, so I’m looking to cheer myself up in proper cyclist fashion - by buying a new bike.

So, I’m thinking a properly racey aero road bike. Disc brakes are a must for me. I’m in the UK, so some concession to comfort is also important as the road surfaces are generally pretty bad - so 28mm tyre clearance as a minimum.
I’m not a racer, so this is purely a vanity purchase.
I’ve got other bikes that I can use for all day cruising and ‘all-road’ type riding. This will be for racing myself - seeing how fast and how hard I can push myself.

Currently I’m looking at the Venge, the Madone, and the cervelo s5. Also the rose x-lite 6, which isn’t such an all out aero machine but I really like it. I’m ruling out, for the moment, the Giant Propel because the stem set up is so monstrously ugly. Also put off by the look of the front end of Cannondale system 6.

Opinions / hot-takes welcome. Would be good to get an idea of the comparative pro’s and con’s of these bikes. Any others I should be considering?

I’ll be picking up a new bike in the next few months.

Will most likely go S-works Venge with Enve 7.8s and Dura-Ace Di2.

For 28mm tires, you’ll want 70-80mm wheels.

Don’t forget the aero helmet as well.

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If comfort is a factor, then I would guess the Madone is a good option, with its ISO system. Never personally ridden one (not a Trek fan), but I would guess it would be the most comfortable ride of the bunch.

All are solid options for an aero road bike…pretty hard to go wrong.

IMO, you should just get the red one. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


ETA - best wishes for your mom and family.


Since you are in the UK, what about a Ribble 883 Disc and use the difference in price to the major brands for some nice upgrades.

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Venge can apparently take 32c tires. I would imagine that would give more comfort than any other feature unless the geometry is bad for your particular fit.

That said, I’m also in the aero bike market but I’m waiting for an aero bike that can take >30c wheels and has a threaded BB… which doesn’t exist yet, but I’m hoping the next iteration will churn out a few T47s :slight_smile:

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All good bikes. Got quite a few friends on the Venge and they all love it. If you’re reasonably confident about your fit coordinates I would look at the Canyon Aeroad as well, I’ve got one and it’s great, bit more bang for your buck as well.

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Posted the same thing almost simultaneously! Not plagiarising I promise…

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any excuse to get the silly looking helmet out :rofl:

Hot take here. Depending on your flexibility you might be faster on a Tarmac. I love my SWorks tarmac, semi aero frame, can put the aero fly bars on it, and the 26 Cotton turbo tires are the best I’ve ridden.

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32mm tires can add a significant amount of drag, even with 80mm rims.

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@Power13 definitely with you on the red is faster. That said, the red madones I see tend to have the absolutely huge branding - trek seem to think that you need to be able to see the brand name from a couple of miles away.
And thanks - a matter of weeks left and hopefully won’t be too unpleasant for her (not that there is ever a pleasant way to go). Distracting myself by thinking about more pleasant things seems to be the best thing I can practically do

@ZeroGravity I hadn’t even thought to look at Ribble - will need to take a look

It ends up being a complicated calculation - a judgement call. Ideally you’d just use the most aero tyre and rim combination, but on a lot of UK roads that will simply be slower than a marginally wider tyre that can better deal with the rougher surface. I know that on my local roads, switching from a 25 to a 28mm tyre has led to much quicker times, for the same power output. 32mm tyres would probably be slower on all but very rough roads, at which point you have to start to wonder whether you’re on the right bike anyway

Lots of leftover money for bits and pieces :wink:

I think 26-28mm is the ideal range.

26mm tires will be the most aerodynamic for “pretty good roads” and you can use rims anywhere from 50-80mm depth. 28mm tires will be good for rougher roads, but you’ll want 70-80mm rims.

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I’ve tried the disc brake version of that PX, have to say I wasn’t massively impressed. It felt really wooden and dead - although it had crappy wheels on at the time so probably not a fair way to assess.
Given that a large part of this is as a vanity purchase, I’m not sure planetX really strokes my ego enough. Yes, I am that shallow.
I borrowed a Planet X Ti tempest from a friend for a while last year - loved that

One other thing to consider is body positioning.

As a vanity bike, your ego is best stroked from short rides anyway, so a slightly more uncomfortable position is bearable.

I’ve historically bought 57 and 58mm frames. My Venge will most likely be a 56 with shorter cranks, higher saddle, and a longer stem. Works for my body proportions, YMMV.

Fair enough – that’s half the fun!

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Yeah, the giant logos aren’t good, IMO, either…but ya know, red. :sunglasses:

I’ll also add that the Aeroad is a great bike. Had one for about 18 months and love it. Lighter than my old Venge and snappier, too. The only “downside” to it vs the other bikes you are considering is the lack of full integration for the cables. Now, you pick up some versatility and functionality / workability as a result, so there are advantages to it as well.

I’m a bit weird on the fit front. I’m super adaptable and can get comfortable on a wide range of different size and geometry bikes, as long as I can get the back end (i.e. saddle height and position relative to the BB) right. That said, it’s quite hard for me to get a really ideal fit - I have really short femurs so even with 165mm cranks and using an inline seat post I struggle on many bikes to get the saddle far enough forward while still being within the design intentions on most bikes.
I’ll get a bike fit as part of the buying process and if that shows that a particular bike just isn’t going to be right for me then I will go for something different

Hopefully your LBS can help you with some test rides and test fits.

To get the saddle as far forward relative to the BB, you’ll want a frame with the steepest seat tube angle. If you’re in between sizes, sometimes the smaller frame will have the steeper angle.