Gear reviews

Bikes

SPECIALIZED Langster 2011, £569, www.specialized.com Published: 04:20pm 29 Apr 2011

 

The 2011 steel Langster is something of a head-turner, with its chromed frame and forks offering more than a nod to earlier Bianchi Pista models. In fact, it sells itself more as an urban-track bike than the others tested here &mdas...

KONA Honky Inc 2011, £1199, www.konaworlduk.com Published: 04:19pm 29 Apr 2011

 

A long-time member of the Kona stable, the now revised Honky Inc includes trademark touches like compact geometry and sloping top-tube. This makes for a riding position that’s spot on for city commuting and relaxed enough for longe...

MARIN Toscana, £999, www.marinbikes.co.uk Published: 04:17pm 29 Apr 2011

 

With its esteemed mtb heritage, it's no surprise Marin has come up with a versatile two-bike platform squarely aimed at commuting and light trail-riding duties. Unlike the others here, the Toscana's made from aluminium — triple-but...

JAMIS Bosanova, £700, www.jamisbikes.com Published: 04:15pm 29 Apr 2011

 

US brand Jamis has been dormant in the UK for a while, but in its day was known for good-value mountain bikes. The new Bosanova is aimed at urban/touring riders, and it’s a well-judged product that's attracted its share of admiring...

GENESIS Day01 Alfine, £999.99, www.genesisbikes.co.uk Published: 04:14pm 29 Apr 2011

 

In 2010, we tested the Alfine-equipped Genesis i0iD and loved it — and this bike takes it’s all-round rideability credentials from both that and the similarly set-up Croix de Fer on which Vin Cox set his round-the-world ...

KONA Cinder Cone 2010, mountain £750, www.konaworld.comPublished: 04:12pm 29 Apr 2011

 

As testament to the  durability of this famous marque, I’ve still got a 1988 Cindercone (from the first year of Kona production) that runs perfectly. But compared to the steel original this current iteration is a whole differe...

PINNACLE Evolution 1.0, £650, www.pinnaclebikes.co.uk Published: 04:10pm 29 Apr 2011

 

Part of Evans Cycles’ growing in-house range which also includes women’s-specific models like the Aura 2.0 (£549). A compact frameset (which gives the Kona a run for its money) is manufactured from custom-butted alumini...

BOARDMAN Pro 2010, £999, www.boardmanbikes.com Published: 04:07pm 29 Apr 2011

As the identically priced stablemate of last issue’s top-rated road bike, this had a hard act to follow — and it’s done a pretty impressive job. Like the rest of the range, the component spec is astonishing, from the RockS...

GT Zaskar Elite 2010, £999, www.gtbicycles.com Published: 04:06pm 29 Apr 2011

Like the Cindercone, GT's Zaskar is one of mountain biking’s most distinguished names, dating back to the halcyon days of the late 1980s. This entry-level model still features GT’s original ‘triple triangle’ des...

RALEIGH Urban 2, £299, www.raleigh.co.uk Published: 04:04pm 29 Apr 2011

The Urban 2 is something of a mixed bag. Built for comfort not speed, it’s stable and sedate over short distances, but too cumbersome for lengthy commutes. In many ways it crosses into city-cum-cargo bike territory (see next issue).
It&rs...

BOARDMAN Comp Fi 2010, £499, www.boardmanbikes.com Published: 04:03pm 29 Apr 2011

This is our first look at the all-new range of women’s-specific bikes from Boardman, which also includes road and mtb models in similarly elegant white livery with pink accents. It’s fair to say that not all our testers appreciated t...

PINNACLE Borealis 4.0, £650, www.evanscycles.com Published: 04:01pm 29 Apr 2011

 

Boreas was the Greek god of the north wind, so it's an appropriate choice for this particularly swift hybrid which tops a four-bike range (from £350). All the models have an aluminium frame, in this case with carbon seat-...

SPECIALIZED Sirrus Comp 2010, £899, www.specialized.com Published: 03:59pm 29 Apr 2011

The 2010 Sirrus Comp updates the model we reviewed in 2009 with an E5 frame — and luckily the rest of that winning formula remains. It’s pitched at the sportier end of the hybrid spectrum, weighs just under 10kg (56cm size), and is s...

TREK Soho, £750, www.trekbikes.co.uk Published: 03:57pm 29 Apr 2011

 

Beneath its sleek, battleship-grey exterior the Soho hides a battery of new technologies. It uses a carbon-composite belt rather than a regular chain (like the District we tested in the last issue) which is both quieter and requires...

DAHON Mu Uno, £480, www.uk.dahon.com Published: 03:46pm 29 Apr 2011

Dahon is well known for its vast range of folders and in previous tests we've been impressed by their ultra-competitive pricing and spec, but felt the looks and build lagged behind the very best (like Birdie or Brompton). However, the Mu Uno ans...