Giant TCR Advanced SL (2012) Review

Update: February 6th 2018

Still going strong.

Size Large i.e. 57.5 cm seat tube; 58.5 cm top tube.

Toray T800 carbon. PowerCore Bottom Bracket, Overdrive 2 Headset.

After six years and 22,500 kms of use, this frame and its components have seen plenty of action.

Firstly, the frame reviewed is not ISP (integrated seatpost) like all models since 2012. It has a separate Vector seatpost which is handy in the event you want to lend the bike to a friend.

I built it up with Shimano Dura-Ace 10 speed racing groupset (53/39), Giant Connect carbon stem, Giant bars, Fizik Antares saddle and Shimano SPD SL pedals. It has been paired with three different wheelsets.

1) Fast Forward FR6 Carbon/aluminium clinchers with Cyclops Powertap rear hub…..quite weighty but aesthetically pleasing and full of power data. Fantastic wheels for a rolling course which have not needed truing. Schwalbe Ultremo Double Defense tyres

2) Dura- Ace C35 aluminium clinchers. Lighter than the FFs, I have used these mainly for forays into the mountains. Faultless service. Schwalbe Ultremo Double Defense tyres

3) Vision Trimax T30 aluminium clinchers. weight 1570 gms without skewers, for wet weather use. Vredestein Fiammante DuoComp tyres. At approximately £400 these wheels are super value….as at 06/02/2018, have rarely needed truing, pre-load bearings very easy to adjust.

The TCR has completed a 400 kms audax, some lumpy days in Andalusia, two ascents of Ventoux, other Alpine monsters, the Ardennes, Regents Park, Hertfordshire countryside and more.

You may read elsewhere that it is a harsh ride or too aggressive. Nonsense. It is comfortable enough for anyone who rides quite a bit. Being extremely versatile, you can sprint, climb, race and yet spend all day in the saddle. I achieved my fastest ever speed on a bike at 101 km ph descending off the Galibier, rock solid all the way.

Shimano Dura-Ace 10 speed has been superseded by the sublime 11 speed version since I purchased the bike. However, it makes little difference to the way the bike rides.

I love it. It’s not quite as quick as the Propel,

but it would be difficult to say adieu…





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