Verenti Kilmeston or Specialized Secteur Elite? Opinions please!

by ashmann   October 28, 2010  

Righty then, you probably get a lot of first posts like this but I am in need of some advice, or at least some wild opinions partially based on fact.

I've had a slightly knackered Specialized hybrid for the last 2 years, it's been absolutely fine, gets me to and from work every day and I've done a couple of longer (200-ish miles) trips on it. But I think the time has finally come to invest a little more (£800-£1000) on a 'nicer' bike.

After a lot of research and a few test rides I've narrowed things down to a choice between the Specialized Secteur Elite or the Verenti Kilmeston.

If I go with the 2011 version of the Secteur Elite then the specs are fairly similar, although is there a noticeable difference between a SRAM Apex and SRAM Rival setup? The only other noticeable difference is that the Kilmeston has a carbon fork and apparently the stock brake pads that come with the Kilmeston are a little slippery.

So, basically, I'm looking for a fairly comfortable, fairly well specced bike that I can can sling a pannier rack on. Ideally I'd like a triple but the SRAM compact double seems to get very favorable reviews so I'm sure I'd get used to it.

Any thoughts/opinions/suggestions would be hugely useful.

11 user comments

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I've not ridden the Specialized but i did the review on here for the Kilmeston and it is a great bike to ride being very comfortable and quick for long days in the saddle. Both the Specialized and the Verenti have carbon forks with an alloy steerer and there is not much else to seperate the 2 bikes overall. The CXP22 wheels on the Specialized get my vote over the 30mm deep Verenti's and the Specialized has slightly lower gearing with a 32t as opposed to the 27t cassette on the Verenti which might benefit if you were after a triple. A plus point for the Kilmeston is mudguard eyelets if you're going to ride year round. I've never ridden a bad Specialized bike so which ever you decide to go for I don't think you'll be disappointed.

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stuke's picture

posted by stuke [313 posts]
28th October 2010 - 13:16

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Kinesis Racelight TK2 is worth a look too at that kind of money, great winter/touring/audax setup

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posted by Dave Atkinson [7388 posts]
28th October 2010 - 17:45

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Also the Ribble winter frame, you can have 105 and Fulcrum Racing 7s on that for about £850...

Dave Atkinson's picture

posted by Dave Atkinson [7388 posts]
28th October 2010 - 17:52

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thanks for all the advice, very helpful. although this means I'm back up to 4 possibles! goshdarnit Thinking

although looks like the Kinesis complete bike comes with Tiagra when ideally I was wanting 105s if I went down the Shimano route. but then I could just buy the frame and build myself...which may cost more but...but...ARGH TOO MUCH CHOICE!

hey ho, reading about all these bikes is almost as fun as riding them.

any further recommendations are more than welcome.

posted by ashmann [5 posts]
29th October 2010 - 11:11

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Having not ridden either take what I say as a pinch of salt. But given the choice of 2 personally I'd go for Kilmeston.

I certainly would not be dragged in by the Specialized name. The Kilmeston is much better specc'd. By all accounts the Kilmeston is a cracking bike. Wiggle are a great company to deal with.

For me its a no brainer.

Napalmhaze's picture

posted by Napalmhaze [80 posts]
2nd November 2010 - 17:32

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argh, so confused, think I need to take advantage of Wiggle's 7 day test ride thingy. The Kilmeston does seem like a very tempting option and I have been impressed with their flawless service whenever I've dealt with them.

posted by ashmann [5 posts]
3rd November 2010 - 9:20

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Yes, I am a big fan of Wiggle.

That said, a friend of mine has the 2010 version of the Secteur Elite and loves it. He paid full price a few months ago but they are down to £750 in some shops now, which means a lot of bike for the money.

posted by Super Domestique [1600 posts]
3rd November 2010 - 12:17

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my current, albeit basic, specialized bike has been fine, really durable and no-nonsense. friends (far better informed than me) are also big fans of the brand.

however the temptation is growing to get something a bit 'different'. I'm not convinced the spec of the Kilmeston is radically better than the Secteur. The 'main' differences seem to be:

Groupset:
Secteur - all SRAM Apex (or all Shimano 105 on the 2010 version)

Kilmeston - mostly SRAM Rival (seems to be very little difference between the Rival and Apex) but with Truativ chainset and ME (own brand) brakes

Wheels:
Secteur - Mavic CXP22

Kilmeston - ME (own brand), but apparently handbuilt and decent, although on the heavy side

Aside from that they are (or seem) more or less identical in relation to geometry etc. And price-wise there isn't a lot between them, unless I can find a 61cm version of the 2010 secteur, in which case the Secteur then wins on price.

Thanks for all the help so far, has been very...well, helpful!

posted by ashmann [5 posts]
3rd November 2010 - 13:14

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right, the harrogate specialized store had a 2010 Elite in stock at £799 (£200 reduction). The 2010 version has a triple (originally what i was looking for) and 105 groupset (have only ever used shimano so am going with what i know) so I've just put a deposit down, am going over next weekend to pick it up. exciting times!

posted by ashmann [5 posts]
3rd November 2010 - 14:10

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ashmann wrote:
exciting times!

There's nothing quite like the excitement of the period between ordering a new bike and picking it up - happy riding! Big Grin

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posted by Simon_MacMichael [8120 posts]
3rd November 2010 - 15:07

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Excellent news. I don't think you'll be disappointed. My mate praises his so highly and was offering to lend it to me when I said I was about to purchase a red Allez 16 in order to try and convince me to purchase the basic Secteur instead.

That said, I was so in love with a red Allez nothing turned me head!!

posted by Super Domestique [1600 posts]
3rd November 2010 - 17:05

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