In the first 15 years of RIDE Cycling Review, there have been 11 Giant bikes reviewed. The first was as early as issue #02, published in September 1998 and it was the second generation of the TCR – Total Compact Road – concept. This year we see the release of the Giant Propel which is almost an antithesis of what the “compact” revolution was all about. The top tube is parallel to the ground, and it suggest that the influence of Mike Burrows’ notion from 15 years ago is starting to wane… particularly when the original innovators themselves are harking back to an aesthetic like what we see in 2013.
Here is a list of the Giant bikes that have been tested in RIDE over the years as well as a few photos from the most recent examples…
Giant’s bike test history in RIDE
Giant TCR Advanced 0. Reviewed by Alex Malone. (RIDE #56) “One of the great features of the TCR Advanced and Advanced SL frame is the ability to install mechanical or electronic groupsets with minimal fuss. This excludes an electronic only Dura-Ace Di2 model but the particular bike on test is mechanical-ready. All the mounting points and internal routing locations are discreet and are well covered when not in use. It was only after a month of use that I realised my bike was also Di2-ready.”
Trinity Advanced SL1. Reviewed by Alex Malone. (RIDE #49) “The $9,999 Giant Trinity Advance SL 1.0 comes with the full monty. Three different heights of stem are included with each bike as standard: low, middle and high. These will affect the stack height of the bars because the length of the fork’s steerer tube is predetermined. Stem size should be chosen by a professional bike fitter. The length of the upper stem changes to suit each size and is also dependent on frame size. There is plenty of height adjustment at the front to make the three stems enough to ensure you can get into an appropriate position.”
A bidon cage carrier is provided with the Trinity and mounts off the saddle rails. It can be fitted to most standard-railed saddles. This is the only place to carry water.
TCR Advanced SL. Reviewed by Rob Rixon. (RIDE #43) “A totally stiff, unresponsive frame isn’t always desirable. Some discernible feedback for your efforts is welcome. There’s nothing worse than a lifeless log of stiff carbon, totally impassive to the presence of the struggling organism propelling it. We want bikes that come to life and react to us! This is exactly what the TCR excels at.”
See if you can guess the manufacturer? Part of the ‘team replica’ treatment is the judicious placement of large Giant logos on every available surface. The down tube lends itself to strong branding.