Genesis enters carbon-fibre market with Zero + video

New road race bike to debut at Tour of Britain

by Mat Brett   August 19, 2014  

Genesis has today launched its first carbon fibre bikes in the Zero range. The British brand says that the Zero has been over 18 months in development and will make its race debut with the Madison Genesis team in this year’s Tour of Britain.

The Zero range features six models, all of them using the same frame.

“The Zero has been specifically designed to meet the extreme demands of stage racing where reductions in overall weight and aerodynamic improvements can make a real difference; the resulting frame now weighs-in below 1kg,” says Genesis.

“With comfort in mind, the frame has been designed to take a standard 27.2mm seatpost to provide more compliance than found on bladed seatpost designs.  The rear triangle features pencil-thin seatstays which help to further provide compliance and comfort to the ride.”

Genesis Zero - Welcome to the Team from Sportline on Vimeo.

The down tube has a large Kamm tail profile that is designed to provide both a stiff pedalling platform and an aerodynamic advantage.

The head tube has been shortened so that the fork crown flows into the down tube. Removing the gap that usually sits behind the crown is intended to minimise turbulence in that area and so reduce drag.

The Zero frame was designed in Britain and it comes out of Genesis’ own moulds so you won’t find this frame sold under other brand names.

The most affordable model is the Zero .1 at £1,299.99 (above and main pic). It is built up with a Shimano Tiagra groupset and Versus 30mm alloy rims on Shimano hubs.

The range topper is the Shimano Dura-Ace equipped Team (above) which is priced £4,499.99. That’s Dura-Ace in its mechanical incarnation (rather than Di2) with C24 wheels. These two models are available now with the rest of the range available from the end of this month.

The Zero .2 at £1,499.99 (orange details, further down the page) is fitted with a Shimano 105 groupset and Fulcrum Racing Sport wheels while the Zero .3 (above) will come with Shimano 105 and Fulcrum Racing 7 LG wheels. That one will be priced at £1,699.99.

The Zero .4 (above) will have a Shimano Ultegra groupset, Fulcrum Racing 7 LG wheels and a price tag of £1,999.99, while the Zero i (below) will have a Shimano Ultegra Di2 groupset and Fulcrum Racing 5 LG wheels and it'll be priced at £2,999.99.

Continental tyres are used across the range, as are Genesis alloy bars, stems and seatposts.

“We are excited to announce our debut carbon range, Zero. This gives the public and the Madison Genesis team a full choice of frames, which excel in different environments,” said Phil Hamill, Brand Director at Genesis.

“The Volare will continue to be used in next year’s Pearl Izumi Tour Series whilst the Zero will be used in stage races, such as the Tour of Britain.

“We are really proud with how Zero has turned out. The only way this project could be viable was by doing it our way, with the brand principles we believe in.  We have invested heavily in developing our own tooling and moulds to ensure this bike is exactly how we intended it to be. We believe strongly in the Zero, which is why we will be offering a lifetime warranty on all Zero frames.”

Genesis Zero - What The Team Had To Say from Sportline on Vimeo.

As mentioned up top, the Zero will first appear in this year’s Tour of Britain. The race starts in Liverpool on 7 September.

Genesis say that the steel Volare is far from over and that the carbon-fibre Zero simply gives them another option. A carbon bike wasn't explicitly requested by the team and the riders are still free to choose to ride steel.

However, Genesis say that in order to get the lightest permitted bike (6.8kg), they had to look to new materials because they've already taken steel as far as it can go without compromising the stiffness required for a thoroughbred race frame. The Genesis Volare Team 953 that we reviewed here on road.cc weighed 7.8kg.

That is not to say that new grades of steel won’t become available in future to get the weight down. For example, they're looking at a new head tube for 2016, tapered instead of XX44, which should save some more weight.

For more information go to www.genesisbikes.co.uk.

59 user comments

Latest 30 commentsNewest firstBest ratedAll

It is a "team" bike, that is why it is so expensive.

posted by Vegita8 [10 posts]
19th August 2014 - 13:51

17 Likes

Gkam84 wrote:
STATO wrote:
Gkam84 wrote:

But the brand of Genesis has lost my interest, because they are using a generic carbon frame. There is nothing unique, like they had with their steel frames.

If you think that carbon frame is generic then by virtue so is the steel. The Volare has nothing standout... that you can see. They did work on tube profiles and geometry to make it special, otherwise you could get any frame builder to make you a 953 frame that would visually look the same. Same applies to carbon, to the un-interested it's 'Generic' when infact it will have the same details and thought applied to it, just like the steel.

Bugger all wrong with steel you say, well yes... apart from the weight.

Yes, you could go to any frame builder and have a 953 frame build, but by using a frame builder, there will be subtle differences in every single frame. They cannot be me exactly the same every time.

By using carbon, you get a mold and it produces the same frame, time after time, for various brands and they all just put stickers on it. There is no difference.

Using a mold gives you the same outside shape, and I guess if you fully automated the layout you'd get more-or-less an identical frame each time... but life's not that perfect and you will get some small variances. Hopefully, however, the variances you do get are very small - after all, you've probably spent months and months running FEA on different shapes, lay-ups, testing with riders and so on to get it just right and don't want to change the feel too much.

With carbon you get the chance to micromanage the material in a way that is a bit more difficult and/or expensive to do with steel or other metals - even given the same outside shape you can alter the lay-up directions, weave, modulus, resin, resin additives yadda yadda yadda. Whether you want to, given the R&D work already put in, is likely to be quite an important question - but i'd warrant there are folk out there who have the 'feel' for some of the tweaks in the same way an experienced metal frame-maker would have for their materials. Much can be done with metals, but it's simpler to e.g. change the lay-up of a carbon tube half-way down its length than trying to do funky things with butting, melt or shaping a metal one.

If you want to change the shape then it's just the same with carbon as with metal - cut, chamfer, butt and wrap (braze/weld) tubes or use tubes and lugs. Seems to work for people like Marco Bertoletti.

Anyway, i'm not meant to be evangelising carbon (or any other material) but just pointing out that even something as dull-sounding as a molded carbon frame can be finessed in many ways. You may already know all that anyway, in which case, i'll try and retroactively shut up now Smile

Gkam84 wrote:
fukawitribe wrote:
I think it was the idea that the Zero is somehow a faceless, "generic" carbon bike that I took umbridge with, rather than anything else - maybe won't be quite the same appeal now as a team, that's true, cracking looking bike mind.

It is a nice looking bike, no doubt. For the mass market it is perfect.

I think they should have kept the team on steel though. Big Grin

Yeah - me too.

fukawitribe's picture

posted by fukawitribe [791 posts]
19th August 2014 - 14:09

15 Likes

I hope Genesis dont go down the SAAB route (full disclosure - i own both Genesis and SAAB and have been loyal to both over several bikes/ cars)
SAAB once made unique and classy cars but then they decided to go mass market but ending up making a product that couldnt compete in that mass market and at the same time alienating their core (and loyal) customers who bought their cars because they *werent* mass market.
It was a lose/ lose and they went tits up.
I understand why Genesis are doing this but also a little sad.
I supported the progress of the Madison Genesis team because i ride a Genesis and they rode on steel. I now have one less reason to follow them.
I guess im a bit old fashioned like that.

ps - i also cant help noticing that a brand that usually gets universal praise on this website from most commentators is getting a mainly negative response to this move.

posted by Some Fella [886 posts]
19th August 2014 - 14:17

13 Likes

You all seem to be missing the bit where they explain they're made to their own design using their own moulds, so it's not a case of flogging a re-badged bike. As a company who claim to be design led, it's the only way they could justifiably do it.

It's a little sad that steel hasn't worked as they expected - but if the anticipated removal of the 6.8kg limit on racing bikes is going to come to pass, they would have found it harder to compete. According to the riders on the vid, it's a much more comfortable bike too - perhaps making a steel one that light and that stiff just made it a bit of a pig to ride long distance?

posted by jug_23 [34 posts]
19th August 2014 - 14:18

18 Likes

Don't worry Genesis I still like you Love Struck

Wesselwookie's picture

posted by Wesselwookie [171 posts]
19th August 2014 - 14:35

16 Likes

Does it come in black. Well F**K ME IT DOES. Whatever happened to paint?

CJStevens

posted by CJSTEVENS1955 [77 posts]
19th August 2014 - 15:22

15 Likes

That really is a dull as ditch water bike

CJStevens

posted by CJSTEVENS1955 [77 posts]
19th August 2014 - 15:24

18 Likes

CJSTEVENS1955 wrote:
Does it come in black. Well F**K ME IT DOES. Whatever happened to paint?

Seems to come in black, team colours (mainly black), grey with orangy bits, white, red.... might not be everyones choice of colour-ways but at least there is a choice.

fukawitribe's picture

posted by fukawitribe [791 posts]
19th August 2014 - 15:34

15 Likes

I'll but 12. I'd like them in black please...would that be a problem?...no!...that's fantastic

CJStevens

posted by CJSTEVENS1955 [77 posts]
19th August 2014 - 18:56

8 Likes

I have an Equilibrium with several shiny bits, including stem, and wanted a shorter one. Forget trying to get help from anyone at Genesis or Madison, they don't answer emails, not even my LBS could get an answer! I've sent six mails to each of them and no answer whatsoever. I bet they'd answer if I said I needed a fleet of bikes.
Bottom line is if you need a replacement part the same as one on the bike originally - you can't get one.

Oh, and the box doesn't come from anywhere in Britain, Taiwan in fact.
Angry

posted by climber [50 posts]
19th August 2014 - 19:32

8 Likes

CJSTEVENS1955 wrote:
I'll but 12. I'd like them in black please...would that be a problem?...no!...that's fantastic

Not sure which is funnier - bleating on about a black bike which is available in other colours or your comment in another thread berating a manufacturer for making a bike called 'Obsydian' in the reviled non-colour Smile

fukawitribe's picture

posted by fukawitribe [791 posts]
19th August 2014 - 19:36

11 Likes

A lot of bikes come in black, or mainly black. It /is/ boring, but at least there's the fun of pointing it out.

It's like men's shoes in the outdoor catalogues, every shade of dull you could imagine. A bright colour? Sorry sir, we've sold out of your size, but we have several beige and taupe left.

“Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling.” James E Starrs

posted by truffy [615 posts]
19th August 2014 - 20:36

9 Likes

truffy wrote:
A lot of bikes come in black, or mainly black. It /is/ boring, but at least there's the fun of pointing it out.

It's like men's shoes in the outdoor catalogues, every shade of dull you could imagine. A bright colour? Sorry sir, we've sold out of your size, but we have several beige and taupe left.

Oh I agree - if there's only black to choose... and there's too much of it in general IMO. I just find it weird that it's become really fashionable to slate any mainly black bike, even when it might suit it and/or it's available in other colourways. Hey ho, each to their own.

fukawitribe's picture

posted by fukawitribe [791 posts]
19th August 2014 - 20:45

9 Likes

fukawitribe wrote:
I just find it weird that it's become really fashionable to slate any mainly black bike, even when it might suit it and/or it's available in other colourways. Hey ho, each to their own.

(my soon-to-arrive new bike is mainly black heehee)

“Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling.” James E Starrs

posted by truffy [615 posts]
19th August 2014 - 21:08

5 Likes

Paint weighs, and some colours weigh more than others. Up to 150g on a frame, is the figure I think I read somewhere. But also, it will add a degree of protection.

But if your design remit is to produce a light bike, then the fact is that less paint = better.

Hence a lot of black bikes out there.

andyspaceman's picture

posted by andyspaceman [241 posts]
19th August 2014 - 22:10

6 Likes

Strange. The Zero has exactly the same geometry as the Ridley Fenix (apart from the XXS size, that's absent from the Genesis offers). Same mould?
http://www.ridley-bikes.com/be/en/bikes/1/127/70/race/fenix-c10-1409am
http://www.genesisbikes.co.uk/bikes/road/zero/zero-team

posted by nesfyl [8 posts]
20th August 2014 - 7:44

1 Like

nesfyl wrote:
Strange. The Zero has exactly the same geometry as the Ridley Fenix (apart from the XXS size, that's absent from the Genesis offers). Same mould?
http://www.ridley-bikes.com/be/en/bikes/1/127/70/race/fenix-c10-1409am
http://www.genesisbikes.co.uk/bikes/road/zero/zero-team

Quick look at those suggest different tube shapes, seat stays, chain stays, head stock, seat tube join to seat stays and of course the fork is different too. So, on balance, probably not.

fukawitribe's picture

posted by fukawitribe [791 posts]
20th August 2014 - 8:22

3 Likes

Can someone explain to me why the top of the range bike is so much cash?

Is there a difference in the frame, or is it charged at a premium simply because its in team colours?

As commented on, you can buy the Zero 4, then buy a separate Dura Ace groupset, C24 wheels and quality finishing kit (i.e. the build for the range topper) and still have change for a cheap winter frame to build a second bike for that £4.5k.

posted by Jimmy Ray Will [432 posts]
20th August 2014 - 9:57

10 Likes

Yeh...I know. Had I been an educated person I would have fully researched the word before opening a tirade. My bad. It’s still bloody black though. If I had known this trend would have taken a few years ago I would have invested in the black market and been rich beyond my wildest dreams...so rich I could buy a rainbow!

CJStevens

posted by CJSTEVENS1955 [77 posts]
20th August 2014 - 11:46

6 Likes

"Well !" he says hopping off the old very nearly black aluminium Genesis I bought a while ago (which is still going strong by the way) "I don't know what all the fuss is about"
It seems to me that if they can make such a good job of the other materials why would they fail at carbon.
Nice looking bike too and pretty well priced I would think
Is the frameset available? I have some decent bits in the loft (that's another story) which would do this some justice.

Alg

posted by alg [147 posts]
20th August 2014 - 15:09

8 Likes

Has anyone noticed or commented on the fact that so many Ti bikes are a boring metally-greyish colour? They bloody well are, y'know!

“Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling.” James E Starrs

posted by truffy [615 posts]
20th August 2014 - 15:44

3 Likes

truffy wrote:
Has anyone noticed or commented on the fact that so many Ti bikes are a boring metally-greyish colour? They bloody well are, y'know!

In fairness, unpainted is one of the big advantages of titanium frames, in that you can buff out scratches with a wire brush.

Black carbon bikes don't have an advantage in being black except for the rare cases where the carbon is unpainted to save weight, but very few black carbon bikes are truly unpainted finishes, as the carbon wrap around areas like the bottom bracket usually looks pretty darn messy without a uniform layer of paint.

posted by giobox [357 posts]
20th August 2014 - 16:16

6 Likes

Dull greyish Ti is the baseline for a handsome bike. I don't make the rules; it just is.

posted by Sam Walker [72 posts]
20th August 2014 - 16:33

0 Likes

Mudguards? You'll be adding a shopping basket next! Smile

But ooooh, that pink'n'cammo QR's nice'n'lairy!

“Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling.” James E Starrs

posted by truffy [615 posts]
20th August 2014 - 16:54

1 Like

For what it's worth I too loved the fact that Genesis seemed to want to plough the steel furrow in competetive racing, it was so refreshing to see. I lust after their steel incarnations even though I ride both aluminium CX and a carbon hard tail mtb.

As previous posters have alluded to they were doing rather well at the events they entered, do they think by not winning all that it somehow diminished the allure of steel? If they did they are surely wide of the mark, their usp was just that.

As for the carbon models I do like them but I still lust after their race winning Volare.

posted by 124g [19 posts]
23rd August 2014 - 10:51

0 Likes

Putting aside the flat earth "they should be steel" thing, I had a look at one these the other day and was quite tempted (zero .4). Much better looking in the flesh and a good write up in Bikes etc.

However they seem a bit weighty (I know, I know). The frame is sub 1kg, but the ultegra level .4 ends up up at 8.2kg. Fulcrum racing 7s are no featherweight but even a big upgrade on them wouldn't make a huge difference. Where's all the weight? Anyone know anything about the finishing kit?

posted by allanj [50 posts]
25th November 2014 - 19:32

0 Likes

allanj wrote:
Putting aside the flat earth "they should be steel" thing, I had a look at one these the other day and was quite tempted (zero .4). Much better looking in the flesh and a good write up in Bikes etc.

However they seem a bit weighty (I know, I know). The frame is sub 1kg, but the ultegra level .4 ends up up at 8.2kg. Fulcrum racing 7s are no featherweight but even a big upgrade on them wouldn't make a huge difference. Where's all the weight? Anyone know anything about the finishing kit?

My Fulcrum 7's with budget tyres are 800g heavier than my zeros with Schwalbe ones.

posted by ajmarshal1 [402 posts]
25th November 2014 - 20:18

0 Likes

Which is kind of my point- it's a big step up to racing zeros (£700ish, over a third of the cost of the bike). That'll save 300g.

The tyres are conti Grand Prix so hardly "budget" - you can go lighter, granted.

Maybe they are just more honest about their weights?

posted by allanj [50 posts]
26th November 2014 - 0:07

0 Likes

allanj wrote:
Which is kind of my point- it's a big step up to racing zeros (£700ish, over a third of the cost of the bike). That'll save 300g.

The tyres are conti Grand Prix so hardly "budget" - you can go lighter, granted.

Maybe they are just more honest about their weights?

Ultegra isn't exactly light either. Ultegra + Fulcrum 7's on anything and you're approaching 8kg. All the finishing kit looks 'in-house' too (It's labelled Genesis) so almost certainly porky if they've just bought in budget seat posts and cockpits.

posted by ajmarshal1 [402 posts]
26th November 2014 - 21:41

0 Likes

Ultegra seems pretty light to me- I'm not in the Dura Ace league!

I've emailed and asked about the finishing kit, awaiting a reply. Looks pretty generic.

posted by allanj [50 posts]
26th November 2014 - 23:36

0 Likes