Cervélo R3

$3,200

Cervélo R3     Photo: Photo by Inga Hendrickson

THE SELL: The fastest route to the top after an elevator.
THE TEST: Considering that the nude frame and fork would run you $2,800, the revamped R3 is an unbelievable deal. That means you get a SRAM Rival drivetrain, Fulcrum Racing 7 wheels, and lots of other bits for almost nothing. Even more remarkable is how well it climbs. "With those short chainstays, I felt like a rabbit," one tester cracked. The R3 didn't fare so well in the flats, though, where many felt the steering was squirrelly. A longer stem and wider bars would help solve that problem, but pre-ride this bike to make sure it's right for you.
THE VERDICT: A solid starter race bike. 16.7 lbs (55); cervelo.com
HANDLING: 3.6
RESPONSIVENESS: 4.4

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