The R5 from Cervelo hardly needs an introduction. If you've flipped through a road bike magazine or watched a professional road race in the past decade, chances are you've either read a glowing review or watched a rider aboard crossing the finish line with their arms in the air. Its success really comes as no surprise since the frame prioritizes its stiffness to weight ratio and is supremely comfortable during 3-week stage races and 6-hour cobbled classics alike. If we had one area of concern, it would be its relatively high barrier of entry which is understandable given its material choices and heavy R&D. Thankfully, Cervelo offers it in its R5 Ultegra R8000 Complete Bike option that's only $800 more than the frameset alone making it the most economical way to get into a complete R5.The first thing you notice when you hop aboard an R5 is its impressive stiffness and geometry that magically shapeshifts between stability and agility when you need it most. Cervelo was able to make the R5 stiffer at key points while still remaining featherweight. In fact, it claims the disc version of the R5 is its stiffest road frame to date. By placing such an emphasis on that stiffness to weight ratio it results in a bike that leaps forward with each pedal stroke yet isn't a wet noodle that's unruly on steep, technical descents and remains predictable at speed.Cervelo achieves this feat by building up the frame using special carbon layups and construction techniques, allowing it to reduce the frame's weight while making it stiffer. It uses advanced engineering software like Finite Element Analysis (FEA) that allows it to better understand exactly how each layer of carbon fiber is working and if it's being used properly. Its carbon expertise prescribes a specific frame layup by placing hundreds of individually cut plies of carbon in a mold in a certain order and orientation. By precisely cutting these plies, the frame is able to be made lighter while still achieving the desi...
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