2014 Cervelo R3 105 and the 2013 Ceervelo R3 Dark 105... what's the difference?

by CGT   March 19, 2014  

So, there was a big hoo-hah last year about the limited edition R3 Dark which had a rebadged R5 frame. They were selling the Dark at £2k with 105.

But looking around this year, they have the R3 105 as a standard model at £2k and other than a couple of things in the finishing kit it's the same bike? The things they mention in the frame - 'squaoval tubes' and the assmytric bottom bracket seem to be carried over from the R3 Dark, which were carried over from the R5....?

Am I missing something? I don't really know much about Cervelos to be honest - so there is a high possibilty I am!

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Don't know about the dark ed, but I believe the 2014 R3 105 retains last year's R3 frameset, but others (i.e. the Ultegra version) use the 2014 frameset. See the other recent R3 thread for details. If I remember correctly, one of the key tell-tale differences between them is internal cable routing.

In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice, but in practice...

posted by notfastenough [3601 posts]
21st March 2014 - 16:11


Ok, I see - thanks for that, lots of good info in the other thread.
Seems like the Ultegra one has better wheels, a better groupset, a better fork and an internally routed frame for electronic groupsets. It's also £1000 dearer....

posted by CGT [21 posts]
24th March 2014 - 12:33


Well the internal routing is just one of the tell-tales, I got the feeling that the frame design is a bigger update than that...

In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice, but in practice...

posted by notfastenough [3601 posts]
24th March 2014 - 13:24


2013 R5 > 2014 R3 Dark
To my eyes looks like the 2013 R3 and R5 were the same mold to start with, so what you get is the R5 carbon layup.

2014 R3 is all new mold (same as 2014 R5, will have different carbon layup)
- Has Squoval 3, a bit more aero, a bit stiffer.
- Di2 compatible / internal routing

All of them have asymmetric chainstays/bottom brackets - that is what the BBright standard is about. They all have squoval tubes, but they tube profile has been developed since 2013 to be a bit more aero, and maybe a bit stiffer.

It is difficult to compare because, in real life the differences are probably quite subtle! Cervelo don't have catch phrases for their carbon or designs (other than Squoval), mainly because they admit it isn't all about high modulus, it is about a balanced blend for stiffness and durability.

From what I have read the 2014 R3 is more aero and maybe a bit stiffer with the updated tube profiles, the R3 dark is probably a bit lighter (if it was less aero and heavier, why sell it at all?).

The Cervelo forum is pretty active, have you looked on there?

posted by jeffersaurus [10 posts]
28th March 2014 - 7:52

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The rumour was that the R3 Dark wasn't just from the R5 mould, but that it actually was an R5 frame (same carbon) with a different paint job.

If that were true an R3 Dark frame would be about 150g lighter than a 'normal' R3 (I think that's the difference).

However, I have never seen that confirmed, or seen an actual weight for an R3 Dark frame.

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posted by tom_w [152 posts]
28th March 2014 - 9:55