Weight:20.9 pounds (54 cm)
Sizes:49, 52, 54, 56, 58, 61 cm
The right bike for:The cyclist looking for a versatile bike at an affordable price
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Cycling is a great way to travel, keep fit and spend time with friends, but buying a road bike for the first time can be intimidating. Different brands offer slightly different geometries with different frame materials and components.
Well-equipped for beginners, the Specialized Allez offers an enjoyable riding experience that will get you miles covered. For $840 you get an aluminum frame and full carbon fork and geometry that suits a wide range of riders. A Shimano Claris 8-speed drivetrain with Sunrace 11-32T cassette and 50/34T chainrings will get you through the climbs and also help you keep up with your friends when the pace picks up. The Allez comes equipped with fender mounts and a luggage rack should you plan to use your new bike for commuting or to carry light loads.
My experience with Allez dates back to just after college. I had settled into a sedentary lifestyle and wanted a change, so I bought an Allez and started commuting a few days a week. Once I felt comfortable, I started commuting every day, going shopping, taking longer trips with my friends, and spending my first (and second, third, and fourth) centuries doing it. It opened me up to the world of road cycling and this new version brought back those memories and reminded me why cycling is so much fun.
The highlight are the double-acting Shimano Claris shifters.
the family goes
There are five bikes in the Allez family, from this entry-level model to the ultimate racer, the Allez Sprint Comp. Attention parents: There is even a junior version with a 44 cm frame and smaller 650b wheels. The Allez Sport has a Shimano Sora 2x9 drivetrain carbon fork for $950. The Allez Elite, winner of a $1,200 Editors' Choice Award, comes with a Shimano 105 2x11 speed and keeps the carbon fork. Hego for a walkIt has a streamlined aluminum frame and 105 parts and is a great first road bike. The Allez, Sport and Elite share the same geometry, but the Sprint is longer and lower for an aggressive, race-ready stance.
An 11-32t cassette offers a good gear range for climbing and racing
Light and strong, with fender and rack mounts.
a peaceful ride
The FACT carbon fork eliminates some of the noise from rough roads.
Dual Pivot Tektro rim brakes provide decent stopping power while keeping costs down.
Specialized Axis wheels keep rolling resistance low.
Other entry options
Compared to entry-level offerings from some other major bike brands, the Allez has a more race-oriented riding position thanks to its comparatively longer reach and shorter stack.
The 54cm Allez has a 6mm longer reach than the same-sized Trek Domane AL 2 ($800) and 3mm longer than the $635 Giant Contend 3. The Allez's stack is 5mm lower than the Domane and the Seat tube angle is 0.25 degrees steeper than the Conten 3. The Allez has a long wheelbase of 988mm (54cm) to give it a more stable ride, but the Domane's wheelbase is 22mm longer than the Allez and is suitable generally more for endurance rides. While the Allez's stance is more aggressive, it's still more upright than the Sprint Comp and other race-oriented bikes, making the Allez a better fit for both short and long-haul rides.
All three brands use an 8-speed drivetrain with Shimano Claris STI shifters and rear derailleur, but swap out the cassette and brakes for a cheaper mix of parts. The Contend is over $100 cheaper than the Domane and Allez thanks to an FSA crankset (instead of the Shimano Claris found on Trek and Specialized) and an aluminum fork (instead of carbon). Both the Allez and Domane come with an 11-32t cassette, while the Contend extends the range to 11-34t for easy transmission.
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Shimano Claris and 2x8-speed drivetrain
Shimano Claris are common in this price range because the shifting is reliable and the price is low. The highlight are the dual shift/brake levers. Behind each brake cover are two levers that move each derailleur. It's the same design used in high-end Shimano systems.
As the Allez family gets more expensive, cassettes go from 8 sprockets to 11 sprockets to reduce gear changing. The 8-speed cassette included with the Allez offers the same 11-32T gear range as the Allez Sprint, but has a larger jump from gear to gear, which can make it difficult to find just the right gear for the terrain and your bike own find cadence. . Because of these larger gaps, the gears also shift slightly slower and louder than 11-speed systems. Nevertheless, the Allez shifts well and offers a good range. As recommended for any new bike, a tune up after the first few rides (to adjust the drivetrain and tighten anything that may have become loose) will keep your Allez running smoothly.
The 2x8-speed drive has Shimano Claris derailleur gears at the front and rear.
The Allez was my entry point into road cycling and I've used it for everything. It started with not having to pay to ride the train and grew into a way of life. I've ridden it in city traffic, country bars and 120-mile night group rides. He did everything I asked him to do and I loved it. I ended up getting hit by a car and took the opportunity to upgrade. When I saw this new version arrive at the office, I was flooded with memories of long walks with my friends.
It felt solid and stable, and the riding position was comfortable. I started out with a short, brisk ride and found that once I was back on level ground, I went fast and full throttle with the gear. I made sure everything was adjusted before heading out on a longer trip and found myself smiling all day. The Allez climbed every hill I encountered without shifting issues or desperately looking for a lower gear. He held his line as I descended and gave me enough power to keep my speed at the bottom of the hill. The only thing I would really like is a smaller jump between gears. Sometimes at speed or when climbing through jumps it can be difficult to maintain momentum, and when riding in a group you can temporarily fall behind and need a nudge to catch up. you could choosehorse 105, which has more gears but the gear range is smaller. Granted, if you spend more money you can get a lighter carbon frame and 11-speed groupset, among other things, which might make your ride better in comparison. But when I rode the Allez, I realized that I could have just as much fun on an entry-level bike as I did on the Specialized Venge. The Allez really sparked my love for cycling, and riding it again reminded me why.
Test editor, cycling
Growing up in the UK with BMX riders, Matt has traveled Europe and the US and now uses those miles to test road, mountain and city bikes.cycle. Your ideal excursion includes steep rock gardens, wide berms and fast descents followed by a cold beer.