Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (2023)

There's a new Allez Sprint on the block. And the uncompromisingly race-oriented aluminum deck arrives at a time when critical racing is buzzing with interest again.

First introduced in 2015, theIr Sprint Originalquickly turned into a bicycle with acult followingamong Red Hook riders with its combination of profiles, stiff frame, aggressive geometry and affordable price. Specialized certainly chased a piece of the pie that Cannondale owned at the time with its CAAD series, and like older CAADs, the old Allez Sprints still draw surprisingly high crowds.high dollarnot used market.

The new Allez Sprint 2022 doesn't deviate much from the original recipe, but it is a completely reworked machine and now an effective recreation of the company's flagship.Tarmac SL7 Road Bike. And what comes as a surprise is just a record.

I've been riding and towing the new Allez Sprint for the past two weeks, long enough to get a good understanding of what makes the new alloy road bike and what doesn't. This review covers what's new, technical details you need to know, and how it works.

And if you're looking for the shorter version, follow the link to myVideo-Review des neuen Specialized Allez Sprint.

A further development of SmartWeld

As you'd expect from the company, Specialized isn't shy about making some bold claims about this new bike. The Californian company claims the new Allez Sprint is the fastest aluminum road bike ever created.

In wind tunnel tests, its streamlined design and hidden wiring bring it much closer in efficiency to the Tarmac SL7 than its slower predecessor. The front of the bike is said to feature the most complicated and advanced alloy steerer ever made. And you'll save hours washing because you'll barely break a sweat keeping up with the speed of weaker bikes. Okay, I made up that last one.

At the heart of these claims is a rather brutal physical manipulation of the aluminum material. Aluminum bicycle frames have undergone major innovations over the years, one of the most well-known examples being hydroforming, using hydraulic pressure to create impressively complex shapes that mimic those of carbon frames. It is rare to find high quality aluminum bicycle frames from major brands on the market today without these molded tube shapes.

Specialized takes hydroforming to another level with itsD'Aluisio SmartWeld patented technologyfirst introduced to the Allez range in 2013. SmartWeld leverages other benefits of hydroforming by creating unique tube shapes that move weld areas away from high stress points. SmartWeld also rolls the edges of the tubes, creating not only a valley for the weld, but also a larger weld surface compared to traditional methods.

According to Specialized, the new Allez Sprint represents another evolution of SmartWeld. With the main welds at the front of the bike now further forward on the down tube and top tube, the Allez Sprint head tube provides an obvious visual example of SmartWeld and its advancements since the last Allez Sprint. This new head tube with extended top tube and down tube extensions starts out as a stamped aluminum piece that is then mechanically formed.soldier insidetogether at the head tube joint that you can see at the front of the bike. In addition to looking different, the result is said to create a structure that is stiffer, stronger, more durable and lighter, while still allowing room for internal cable routing. In Specialized's words, they couldn't have built the new Allez Sprint without it.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (1)
Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (2)

It's an impressive investment, considering that each of the six frame sizes has its own stamped, formed and welded head tube, each with a different gauge of material.

The predecessor Allez Sprint used a similar SmartWeld concept on the bottom bracket, but the successor model takes a different new approach. Let your eyes follow the wide, streamlined downtube in search of the first weld and you'll soon find yourself on the opposite side of the bottom bracket. And that's because the bottom bracket is now hydroformed in one piece with the downtube.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (3)

“[This method] helps to eliminate some of the extra welding and material needed in the first generation Allez Sprint, while still using the same material wall thickness throughout the tube, rather than joining two tubes together,” explained the road product from Specialized. Manager Cameron Piper. "Balances the feel of the bike."

The bottom bracket housing with standard 68mm English thread is then assembled, welded and machined into this one-piece hydroformed housing. The design also leaves enough space around this sleeve to allow the rear brake hose and shifter cables to remain hidden within the frame while physically separating them from the crankshaft shaft.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (4)

The SmartWeld concept of creating a weld trough is also applied to most other frame attachment points. And similarly, no round tubes are found. Instead, all tube shapes mimic those of the Tarmac SL7 so closely that the Allez Sprint shares the same aero carbon seatpost as its bigger carbon sibling.

Specialized hasn't shared exact stiffness numbers, but says the new Allez Sprint meets the company's Tarmac SL7 stiffness goals and offers better power transfer than the previous Allez Sprint.

More of the same

There are a number of other elements that make the Allez Sprint the aluminum sibling of theAsfalto SL7. And notably, the carbon fiber front fork is borrowed directly from the Tarmac SL7 Pro. I weighed 418g in my test fork with an uncut 250mm steerer tube and thru-axle, but without max compression.

The new Allez Sprint also inherits the Tarmac SL7's internal routing system with a dedicated headset assembly that routes all brake hoses and shift cables (if applicable) through the oversized upper headset bearing.

Each brake and driveline has its own groove in the top cover of the headset and a corresponding split ring that guides each line into the frame. However, while the Tarmac SL7 features a stem cover that completely hides these lines, the Allez Sprint takes a simpler approach, allowing the brake cables and hoses to move freely outside the unique upper stem cover.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (5)

The Allez Sprint is ready to ride with any standard 1 1/8" stem and matching handlebars, with no special cable routing required. And changing those components or adjusting the stem height is no different than a fully cabled bike. Difficulty One thing to know is that if the headset bearings need replacing you will have to disconnect all cables and hoses from the bike, a pain but not as much as on bikes with fully integrated cockpits where everything works internally. Mechanical gearbox replacement can be expected to be a more complicated process, but with full length continuous gearboxes, replacing just one inner cable is easy.

Of course, I can't ignore the fact that the Tarmac SL7 recently underwent a very public test.Recall related to your head tube and head tube. The problem was that the single split ring on the headset was quite sharp and could cut through the carbon steerer tube in certain situations. Specialized's solution, used in the Allez Sprint, includes two new parts. First, the new split compression ring now sits around a small stainless steel ring that protects the carbon steerer tube. Second, the compression plug inside the headset has been elongated so that it comes out of the top of the headset just below the top bearing of the headset. It's been debated endlessly, but in my opinion, this revised split ring fits perfectly and seals well, and the new, longer compression plug seems to provide a security redundancy that many other designs lack.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (6)

Some will scoff at the fact that the 56 gram ultra-long compression plug shouldn't be necessary to keep the bike secure. And to that I say it's probably no more necessary than countless other bikes people ride today. A carbon steerer failure is one of those things that keeps tech writers up at night, and while Specialized's failsafe solution may not be perfect, I truly believe this is a step in the right direction. Alright, let's continue.

The extremely narrow, low chainstays ensure that the tire clearance is also suitable for the SL7. We're talking easy spacing for 700×32mm front and rear tires. And actually, those numbers are pretty conservative, so it could certainly get wider again depending on the rim width.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (7)
Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (8)

As with the SL7 or any road bike, you don't have to worry about fender clearance as there are no fender mounts.

Geometry often has its own section as it is the most important part of any bike. There's not much to say here, though: it's another area that now suits the slow and fast-driving Tarmac SL7. Geometry graphics fans will notice some differences due to the Allez Sprint's shorter head tube, but once you include the proprietary headset top cap (which should be used), all the fit and handling metrics even out. So professionals reading this need not worry; Your Allez Sprint exactly fits your SL7 in terms of fit and steering geometry. I will come back to this geometry later.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (9)

As mentioned above, the seatpost is identical and all Allez Sprint models come with the same version of the S-Works found on carbon bikes. It's impressively light at 173g, which is said to be one of the reasons the new Allez Sprint is more comfortable than the old one, and has a connection for a Shimano Di2 junction box (not needed in 12-speed). A 20mm offset version comes in stock, but there is also a non-offset version.

things that are different

Obviously, the new Allez Sprint has a lot in common with the Tarmac SL7, but there are differences that go beyond materials.

As mentioned earlier, the inner parts of the headphones are the same, but the cover of the headphones is not. And while Specialized has a few different skins available for the SL7, they currently only produce a single universal skin for the Allez Sprint. This cover has four routing holes: two for mechanical transmissions and two for hydraulic brake hoses. On my test bike, wireless shifting meant I had to fill two empty holes with rubber plugs. However, it is possible to fit the hidden cab and matching headphone cover of an SL7 into this frame. Still, it would be nice to see Specialized offering a top cover specifically for use with electronic drivetrains.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (10)

As with the SL7, you can ride just about any group you choose with this frame, be it battery or SWR. However, the removable derailleur flap is new to Specialized and offers the possibility of a 1x cleaner setup.

The aerodynamic seatpost is secured with an external clamp. It holds the carbon post with an iron grip and is arguably easier to adjust than an internal wedge clamp, but it's worth noting that, like the post itself, it's still a proprietary shape.

Other specifications include flat mount disc brake mounts that accept 140mm or 160mm rotors and bolt-on low thru axles. They don't have built-in handles, so you'll need a separate tool, but they do have brass washers at the frame contact points and they're great.

The new Allez Sprint may be within the 12 to 16 seconds claimed by the Tarmac SL7 over 40km in a wind tunnel, but those calculations don't factor in the extra pounds of extra mass in the frame. Granted, that weight won't make much of a difference to the watch on steep climbs, but it's still worth mentioning.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (11)
Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (12)

My Allez Sprint 52cm example weighed 1510g (including paintwork, rear axle, derailleur hanger, pressed headphone cups, seatpost collar and bottle cage screws). In comparison theOriginal Quadro Allez Sprint rim brakeat just under 1,200 grams, it weighed less. My complete bike weighs 7.65 kg (excluding pedals and cages).

Pricing and model options

A healthy range of wildly painted, vibrant frame options helped give the original Allez Sprint its cult following, and the new Allez Sprint looks to carry on with six different paint finishes on the frame alone.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (13)

As tested, the framesets are priced at $1700 / AU$2400 / £1599 including fork, headset and seatpost. No handlebars or stem.

This is a fair increase over the $1,200 sold for the original Allez Sprint frame, but this increase shouldn't come as a surprise given the evolution of all bike prices. The fact that Specialized included the same fork and seatpost as the $3,300 Tarmac SL7 frame gives a good indication of the price difference at play here.

Specialized will also be offering the Allez Sprint Comp with a Shimano 105 groupset with mechanical/hydraulic disc brakes, along with decent alloy wheels for $3,000 / AU$4,200 / £2,650. That's a $700 premium over similarly equipped devices.Cannondale CAAD13.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (14)
Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (15)

Lastly, select markets get the Allez Sprint LTD, a much more upscale, race-ready offering at $6,800/AU$N/A/£N/A with a SRAM Force AXS 1x groupset and Roval Rapide carbon wheels . It's a build that differs only slightly from the build on my test bike.

I'm a little surprised that there aren't more comprehensive bike options, but that's likely the result of the continued shortage of components across the industry. I speculate that more spec options will be added as industry supply stabilizes in the future.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (16)

As you can tell from the price, the new Allez Sprint isn't meant to be an entry-level road bike. Think of it more as a premium aluminum racer with almost no objects. And that begs the question: Specialized has something new for the regular Allez that's been serving the entry-level market for years. Specialized was shy, but the smiles in the Zoom room suggested something like this was inevitable. I'm crossing my fingers for a technological shift towards round tubes with simple, easy-to-fix fittings everywhere. The allezthos, so to speak (experts have my email to discuss licensing).

How the Allez Sprint works

rigidity. It's perhaps the most clichéd word to use when talking about a new road bike, component, or pair of high-performance cycling shoes. And while the jury is out on whether that actually makes you faster, it's hard to argue that a stiffer bike feels better when you're pedaling furiously or pushing the tires to the brim on freshly paved tarmac. Simply put, the Allez Sprint has that feel.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (17)

Some complained about itCannondale CAAD13It sacrificed a lot of stiffness in the name of comfort, and Specialized is obviously aiming to achieve those strain gauge powers. There is an obvious connection between the handlebar and the front tire or the bottom bracket and the rear axle. And when you combine the undeniably fast handling that the Tarmac is known for, this is a bike that feels like it was made to be pushed to the limit.

The new Allez Sprint is smoother than the old and is far from a shaker from aluminum's distant past, but it still generates more feedback than Specialized would have you believe. There are plenty of bikes on the market that offer an ultra-smooth, comfortable ride quality that almost bores the road, but the Allez Sprint isn't one of them.

This feedback from the structure can bring benefits. It lets you feel the cracks in the pavement, the small pieces of loose gravel on top, and the bliss of freshly paved asphalt. Don't try this at home right now, but when I closed my eyes I could feel the wheels following the contours of the road, where the power-draining cracks were, and the bike rolling along with them. With an experienced driver, it's this information that allows you to feel when the rear tire is interfering with traction, when the weight distribution is off in a sprint, or when the road camber is just right to drop your knee and settle down. Slide.

Of course, maximizing the tires' generous clearance helps add a hefty dose of comfort and mute the ride, but that just turns the needle on its firm, fast baseline.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (18)

From a geometry standpoint, Specialized's performance road bikes are true road bikes, often with more aggressive stacking and reach values ​​compared to much of the competition. And just like the Tarmac SL7, the Allez Sprint will have a lot of drop from saddle to handlebars. While you can race with the stem raised, keep in mind that the Allez Sprint isn't really designed to race in a relaxed endurance riding position.

That said, there can be some limitations for the few who can pull off an ultra-aggressive fit and generally ride a -17° stem and no spacers. The plastic headphone top cover must be used and the extremely low pole positions can make cable routing difficult.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (19)

Meanwhile, the innovative handling means finger overlap is a given on the smaller sizes. This is perfectly normal on most road bikes and can become noticeable as tire volume increases. And while I love the planted handling that the bottom bracket drop provides, it's something worth mentioning for those who often try to pedal through corners. Adapted courses and technical criteria.

There's no denying that this bike is a lot of fun and super fast. But does that stiffness really make it faster? I can't say for sure without the data, but I will say that what feels faster may be slower, and the sense of speed may come from the bike competing with the surface below.

This analogy may only work for someone who has ridden a mountain bike, but stay with me. When mountain biking, consider the stiff or dual suspension option. The hardtail (only the front wheel has suspension) feels faster because it has more surface communicating with you, while the dual suspension (both wheels have suspension) feels slower because it dulls that surface.

The Allez Sprint is the Hardtail, a bike that rewards the rider with instant gratification for effort and a ride quality akin to getting behind the wheel of a hard-suspension race car. On smooth, fast roads, you'll feel like you've reached a higher level of bike handling and ready to rip your competitors' legs off like they're in a zombie movie.

Technical overview Allez Sprint 2022 (20)

However, under a less experienced rider, or someone suffering from severe fatigue after a big day on the bike, the combination of tighter handling and snappy steering geometry simply requires more attention, and that attention requires energy.

From a pure speed standpoint, there may be better bikes out there, but that didn't make the previous Allez Sprint all that successful. Rather, it was the combination of noticeable performance with a reasonably affordable bike, and in the event of a fall, it would leave you with the scars you should have been worried about. The fact that it was sleek and looked fast didn't hurt one bit either. It's this recipe that made CAADs so successful, and the formula that the original Allez Sprints have likely adopted in recent years. The higher price tag will likely put the new Allez Sprint out of reach for lace-wearing college riders, but otherwise, it seems certain that Specialized has served up a family dish that many will love.

Who is the Allez Sprint for?

Justin Williams e a equipe L39ION de Los Angeles.

Okay, okay, okay, you don't have to be a professional criteria expert to enjoy the Allez Sprint. Although for such an application it is almost perfect.

Note that this is a race bike with fast handling and an aggressive fit. Without a doubt, there are countless better road bike options for those who get nervous on the descents or tend to spend long days in the saddle where vibration fatigue is real. While the price is a bit more affordable than many Specialized carbon bikes, the Allez Sprint is still a bike better suited to more experienced riders who like to compete for city races or glory races.

Sidebar: Notes on sustainability

Aluminum bikes appear to be a more sustainable option than a carbon fiber frame, and while the material often shows signs of damage and is easy to recycle, it's not as easy to repair. All types of damage to steel, titanium and carbon fiber structures can be repaired frequently. However, you are unlikely to find a frame builder willing to perform a structural repair on a lightweight aluminum frame. The material just doesn't handle excessive heat cycling well. Specialized doesn't claim the Allez Sprint is a greener option.

Overall, the new Allez Sprint has core component compatibility that should ensure ease of use. It uses industry-standard wheel spacing, the most common standard bottom bracket, the headset uses press-fit cups in case the bearing seats wear out, and even the headset bearings they include aren't much hard to find.

The headset top cover (although in theory you could probably fit something like an FSA SMR/ACR system on this bike), headset shim assembly, seatpost and saddle clamp all belong to the current generation of high-end road bikes. Specialized's high performance. Specialized officially offers service and parts for seven years after this model's last year of production, which is a decent amount of time. Still, the long-term availability of certain parts is worth considering if you expect to own a bike for decades.


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