What the Pros Ride – Specialized Roubaix

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The original Roubaix was a revolutionary product with its windows in the tubing, longish wheelbase, relaxed geometry and a tall head tube, and offered sound vertical compliance at that time.

Many riders have good nostalgia about the bike, and while the Specialized Roubaix might be cut from the same cloth, it is altogether a different bike. Comparisons might be unfair but a glance at it and some discussion will be not. Find out what the 2017 version of the Roubaix offers.


Design

The head angle is the same here, and the same stiffness can be observed on its rear end. The FutureShock unit at the front moves just over the head tube, with 3 mm travel upwards and 17 mm travel downwards.

The frame profile is cleaner here, mainly due to the Zertz inserts being absent. Both the seat clamp and the Di2 integration are supremely functional.

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However, its aluminum seat clamp is a bit incompatible with the wonderful carbon frame. The toptube of the specialized version is less sloping, which makes the bike look more of a racer.




Ride Quality

The quality of ride is affected somewhat in the 2017 Roubaix due to the new suspension.

You can sense movement of the front part, especially during turning corners as well as when you need to shift your own body weight. You need some time to adjust to this.                                     The bike would be available with 3 varied springs, and riders can choose between firmer or softer springs. Smooth, hard tarmac needs firmer spring. In the specialized version, the Zertz inserts are now no more to be found. These have been substituted by the FutureShock concept, lower twin-bolt seat clamp, and a longer seat post, which offer enough compliance.

 Comfort

The level of comfort is absolutely better here. It can smooth out vibrations, uneven roads, potholes and other oddities on the road and make everything more or less flat. The bike comes with the compliant and proven CG-R seat post, which is longer and offers more flex with the thicker tube and rubber seal.      The new Roubaix comes without standard caliper brakes and is only available in a disc brake version. It has disc brake flat-mount calipers. It is also lighter than its predecessors are and that is not something to yell about. With the geometry, head angle and design cues borrowed from the Tarmac, the specialized version of the Roubaix is worth buying.


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