Bike test 05: RIDE 75 – Specialized Allez
The fifth of the five bikes on test in #RIDE75 is the Specialized Allez, an aluminium-frame with a very bright yellow paint scheme that sings in the sun.
Lachlan McKillop rounds out the quintet of bike tests, on a bike that retails for $2,800 – albeit with different wheels than what you see in the pictures below.
“The geometry of the latest Allez in the Specialized stable is quite aggressive, unlike many modern alloy offerings that tend to be more generous with head tube length or seat tube angles,” writes McKillop.
“In short, the bike screams ‘Racer!’ something that is going to be perfect for the criterium specialist, more so than the road racer. For me, at 175cm tall, the geometry is near perfect. The 130mm head tube is shorter than many other 54cm frames and, matched with the steep seat tube, the bike offers a very aggressive position.”
Let’s be clear: the bike you see pictured here is being marketed to those on a budget but the wheels supplied on our test bike retail for $1,000 (AUD) more than the quoted price for the entire bike… so it is obvious that the impression we got from riding the Allez is different to what it would be when sold with the Axis Elite alloy wheels that are on the catalogue item.
Quality forks, lovely coloured frame, interesting approach to welding…
One of the less attractive aspects of the Allez is the cable work required because of the ‘Smart Weld’ build. It’s necessary because the bottom bracket shell is part of a ‘lug’ that is welded to the down tube.
This frame does have an add-on seat post clamp but it has to be customised for the Allez as the shape is Specialized-specific.
The angles and geometry of the Allez are similar to what you’ll find on Specialized’s high-end race bikes.
Praxis cranks and Shimano 105 components help keep the costs down a little but there are plenty of riders who are opting for this frame and adding more luxurious parts to it because of how well the handling traits suit criterium racing…
Looking at the rear hub from below.
The famous ‘S’ logo adorns the front of the bright yellow bike.
They say that 52/36 is “semi-compact”… it won’t be long before what was once a tradition front combination – ie. 53/39 – is given a special name and compact becomes the norm. Actually, that pretty much seems to be how it is already.
The black logo is bold and large but it tends to suit the bike well.
– Photos by Shane Lovejoy