Specialized Roubaix Comp 2017
Shimano 105/Ultegra 2x11 gearing and hydraulic disc brakes make the most of the redesigned Roubaix, which achieved a perfect 10 rating in Cycling Plus.
Bike Radar/Cycling Plus have already rated the completely redesigned 2017 Roubaix range as 'the new standard in endurance racing bikes'.
That's a fitting description considering Specialized coined the term endurance road bike to describe the game-changing bike they launched in 2004 - the original Roubaix. However, Bike Radar made it clear that the 2017 Roubaix has raised the bar by several notches by retiring the original's Zertz 'jelly' shock absorbers. Instead, compliance is achieved via a new, lighter weight carbon layup and a 20mm-travel lightweight suspension cartridge inside the top of the head tube that suspends the rider, not the bike as shown in this video.
'It's a world apart from the original; more aggressive and nimble and it has a level of road holding that's simply astonishing. If you still want the more upright riding position of the previous SL4 you can achieve that through the available fitting options, while still retaining the ability to go more aggressive later on.'
Bike Radar were particularly impressed by the new Roubaix's level of control on descents.
'The Roubaix really shines when the road turns downwards. All that comfort-boosting suspension and back-end compliance means control. You can hammer this Specialized as fast as you like with no concern for scarred surfaces, potholes, ruts and heavy gravelled surfaces. The chassis just sits in and maintains contact, where a less compliant bike would skip or bounce.'
Bike Radar signed off the review eloquently with just six words: 'it will make every ride better'. Imagine that. See full review.
Here's how the Bike Co-op's buying director, Mike, describes how Specialized have radically upgraded what we have long regarded as the perfect sportive bike.
'The old Roubaix/Ruby had a long wheelbase, slack angles, lots of room for 28mm tyres and a very long head tube - all to make for a limousine ride. It also had Zertz jelly moulded into the frame and a Specialized CG-R seatpost to provide added comfort.
The 2017 Roubaix/Ruby is completely and utterly different. The underlying frame is very much like that of a Specialized Tarmac with a relatively short wheelbase, relatively tight angles and a normal length of head tube. Also gone are the Zertz jelly inserts. The only carry-over from the old bike is space for fat tyres – in this case up to 32mm – and the Specialized CG-R seatpost.
In the new frame most of the comfort is provided by a Future Shock suspension cartridge that sits between the stem and the fork steerer and provides 20mm of travel.
This cunning ruse allows the actual ‘working' frame of the Roubaix/Ruby to be lighter, stiffer, more efficient, faster riding and more normal looking than on the old Roubaix/Ruby. Despite all this hard-racing-man pedigree the addition of the Futureshock provides a magic carpet ride that allows you to power over the Belgian cobbles as if you had just taken a fistful of Tramadol.
The Futureshock is provided with three springs with different spring rates – with the medium spring fitted as standard.
In one other touch the top of the seat tube is slightly ovalised, and the seat clamp is a couple of inches lower on the seat tube, all to allow the seatpin to flex adding even more comfort.
Finally all Roubaix and Ruby frames are now Rider First Engineered, meaning that different sizes of bike have a different and optimized carbon layup, all are disc specific with through axles, and all have threaded bottom brackets.'
Specialized's own description
'When you're rolling smoother, you're rolling faster. And regardless of if you're on the cobbles of Northern France or the chip and seal of your hometown, you'll benefit immensely from the all-new Roubaix Comp.
The frame is the lightest that we've ever made, and it's been constructed from our FACT 10r carbon fibre. Its stiffness levels are also off the charts, and compared to the SL4 iteration of yesteryear, you'll experience a whole new, faster, and more efficient geometry. Through some engineering sorcery, however, we've managed to keep the same fit, feel, and position that we've all come to love from the SL4.
Of course, you're probably thinking, "get on to the suspension thing up front." We call it Future Shock, and essentially, it's a piston in the head tube with 20mm of travel. We developed this technology in partnership with McLaren Applied Technologies, and the result of this are a host of drastic performance improvements, namely in the vertical compliance department.
Without giving a physics lecture, we found that focusing on vertical compliance, instead of fork splay, meant that we could improve smoothness, speed, and comfort in one fell swoop. And of all the bikes that we've tested with our Rolling Efficiency Model, the new Roubaix outperforms anything on the market.
Lastly, we spec'd it with awesome components, like Ultegra/105 11-speed shifting, hydraulic disc brakes, and ultra-tough DT R460 Disc wheels.
- Featuring our Rider-First Engineered™ design that ensures every frame size has the same legendary responsiveness and smooth ride quality that you'd expect from a Roubaix. The FACT 10r frameset is exceptional in every way, offering the ideal blend of light overall weight and targeted stiffness. Meanwhile, the all-new Future Shock "suspension" system at the cockpit delivers a revolutionary degree of comfort and control.
- A Roubaix Disc fork is built from our top-end FACT 11r carbon fibre for supreme stiffness, strength, and reactivity, while a thru-axle design only stands to bolster all of the above.
- This Praxis Zayante 50/34T crankset is perfect for tackling steep grades and rough roads.'
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|Specialized Roubaix Comp 2017|
|FRAME||FACT 10r carbon, Endurance Geometry, Rider-First Engineered™, 12x142mm thru-axle, Future Shock suspension, 20mm of travel|
|FORK||Roubaix disc, FACT 11r carbon, 12x100mm thru-axle|
|FRONT WHEEL||DT R470 Disc, thru-axle, 2Bliss Ready|
|REAR WHEEL||DT R470 Disc, thru-axle, 2Bliss Ready|
|INNER TUBES||700x20/28mm, 40mm Presta valve|
|FRONT TYRE||Turbo Pro, 700x26mm, 60TPI, folding bead, BlackBelt protection|
|REAR TYRE||Turbo Pro, 700x26mm, 60TPI, folding bead, BlackBelt protection|
|SHIFT LEVERS||Shimano ST-RS505, 11-speed|
|FRONT DERAILLEUR||Shimano Ultegra, braze-on|
|REAR DERAILLEUR||Shimano Ultegra, long cage, 11-speed|
|CASSETTE||Shimano 105, 11-speed, 11-32t|
|CHAIN||KMC X11, 11-speed|
|FRONT BRAKE||Shimano 805 Flat-Mount HYD, resin pads w/fins|
|REAR BRAKE||Shimano 805 Flat-Mount HYD, resin pads w/fins|
|HANDLEBARS||Specialized Hover Comp Alloy, 15mm rise, 125mm drop, 75mm reach|
|TAPE||S-Wrap Roubaix w/stickygel|
|STEM||3D-forged alloy, 7-degree rise|
|SADDLE||Phenom Comp GT, hollow Cr-Mo rails, 143mm|
|SEATPOST||Specialized CG-R, FACT carbon, single bolt, 27.2mm|