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New road race bike to debut at Tour of Britain

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.

Mat has worked for loads of bike magazines over 20+ years, and been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. He's been road.cc technical editor for eight years, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a past winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer.

59 comments

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Chris James [439 posts] 3 years ago
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That's a shame really. I understood the whole point of the Volare was to demonstrate that steel could still stand up in the peloton so introducing a much lighter frame for stage races leaves the distinct impression that it doesn't!

Otherwise, the bikes look nice enough.

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paulrbarnard [182 posts] 3 years ago
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Chris James wrote:

That's a shame really. I understood the whole point of the Volare was to demonstrate that steel could still stand up in the peloton so introducing a much lighter frame for stage races leaves the distinct impression that it doesn't!

Otherwise, the bikes look nice enough.

Agreed, it does feel like a sell out. You had to admire them for standing on principles with the steel frames. They have now become 'just another bike manufacturer..."

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Wookie [241 posts] 3 years ago
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paulrbarnard wrote:
Chris James wrote:

That's a shame really. I understood the whole point of the Volare was to demonstrate that steel could still stand up in the peloton so introducing a much lighter frame for stage races leaves the distinct impression that it doesn't!

Otherwise, the bikes look nice enough.

Agreed, it does feel like a sell out. You had to admire them for standing on principles with the steel frames. They have now become 'just another bike manufacturer..."

Yep agree as well. But I am guessing there are going to be new regulations from the UCI that aren’t based on bicycle weight but bicycle impact strength and this may be the reason for the change. I don’t have any evidence for this but the bikes in the peloton are going to get extremely light.

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Mayhem SWE [31 posts] 3 years ago
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Bikes look nice, but the value of that Dura-Ace build is terrible. As the frame is supposedly the same you could buy the Tiagra build with separate Dura-Ace groupset and wheelset to easily save a grand! Knowing Genesis a loose frameset will probably be available eventually as well (albeit perhaps in a different color).

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andyspaceman [253 posts] 3 years ago
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It's a bit of a 'Dylan went electric' moment.

Nice to see the brand continuing to grow and diversify. I wouldn't imagine that this means the end of the Volare as a team race bike.

That Zero is a very pretty bike though, really nicely proportioned. Looks like they've carried through something they pioneered on the Core mountain bikes a few years ago, strong and beefy front end for strength and power, with a svelte rear end for light weight and comfort. Not that they're the first to do this on the road by any means, but good to see some consistency and continued evolution.

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C.Gregs [20 posts] 3 years ago
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I can see the move to carbon being a good thing. Their steel bikes were set up more for the crit races; shorter wheelbase, more aggresive etc. These bikes look more comfy and suited for longer stage races.

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fukawitribe [1946 posts] 3 years ago
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paulrbarnard wrote:
Chris James wrote:

That's a shame really. I understood the whole point of the Volare was to demonstrate that steel could still stand up in the peloton so introducing a much lighter frame for stage races leaves the distinct impression that it doesn't!

Otherwise, the bikes look nice enough.

Agreed, it does feel like a sell out.

Genesis seemed to have always said they're a design-led company that builds things based on the merits of the materials and the expertise they have. Sounds like they've just created another bike, using another material, that will do what they need it to do. It was nice they waved the flag for steel in the peloton, but I doubt even they would claim it's the best material for every circumstance. Good on 'em I say - especially with a life-time warranty.

paulrbarnard wrote:

You had to admire them for standing on principles with the steel frames.

They're still using steel frames for racing, just not for all of the races.

paulrbarnard wrote:

They have now become 'just another bike manufacturer..."

Well, just another British bike manufacturer who now do carbon road frames maybe... even that's a bit harsh.

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adscrim [144 posts] 3 years ago
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I don't agree. I think the Volare demostrated that steel was still a viable racing material. However, people buy plastic - myself included, and what they've done is offer the British public a British designed bike from a British manufacturer at a reasonable price. Plus in my opinion it's a bit of a looker. I'd be tempted if I was in the market for another bike. But then I quite like being married.

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Gkam84 [9108 posts] 3 years ago
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BIG let down, the appeal of Genesis for me was the steel bike.

That has just lost my interest in the brand, just another generic carbon frame bike company now.

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fukawitribe [1946 posts] 3 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:

BIG let down, the appeal of Genesis for me was the steel bike.

That has just lost my interest in the brand, just another generic carbon frame bike company now.

"just another generic carbon frame bike company now" Really ? I mean really ? So does that also suddenly make their steel race bikes shite, or inconsequential, now ? Anyway, your choice - sounds bloody harsh no matter what you think about carbon, carbon bikes or those that manufacture them.

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nowasps [519 posts] 3 years ago
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Taking personal affront when a manufacturer comes out with a new product that you don't approve of, seems completely barking to me. Get a grip.

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pubcyclist [24 posts] 3 years ago
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Its a really great looking range for top riders. This just compliments their sponsorship of a great race team, seems like a good fit. I still prefer the classic looks of the croix de fer but I don't race and I ride a gas-pipe raleigh, so what do I know ?  3

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Binky [116 posts] 3 years ago
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Carbon bikes make money better than steel bikes, even Genesis knows this.

It's not a case of selling out it a case of trying to still stay in the game.

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Must be Mad [622 posts] 3 years ago
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Sad in away to see them branch out from Steel... but I think I now have to add another bike to my 'next bike shortlist'. The zero.4 is a bit of a looker...

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deblemund [263 posts] 3 years ago
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Very nice. I'm sure the frame will be on offer on its own soon, hopefully in that stealth black. I don't need a new bike but I'd have to think about one of these if / when I do. Looking forward to a full review.

Steel specialists now branching out. Just like Condor, who nobody accusing of selling out, and just like everyone else when large scale carbon manufacture became possible!

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Gkam84 [9108 posts] 3 years ago
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fukawitribe wrote:
Gkam84 wrote:

BIG let down, the appeal of Genesis for me was the steel bike.

That has just lost my interest in the brand, just another generic carbon frame bike company now.

"just another generic carbon frame bike company now" Really ? I mean really ? So does that also suddenly make their steel race bikes shite, or inconsequential, now ? Anyway, your choice - sounds bloody harsh no matter what you think about carbon, carbon bikes or those that manufacture them.

Sorry, I meant the team Madison Genesis has lost its appeal for me, now they are racing carbon.

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 and no, it does not make their steel frames "shite" it just makes the brand less appealing because they are putting the team onto a carbon bike, when there was bugger all wrong with the steel and at least they had something different going for them from all the other generic carbon bikes on the market that brands give to team for racing.

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bendertherobot [1453 posts] 3 years ago
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Quite like that Zero.3.

It's a bit overpriced, of course. But a very nice looking thing. Perhaps nicer than the equivalent Canyon or Rose. But, as I say, overpriced.

For me it's the nicest colourway. So the easiest one to buy, sell the kit that's attached to it, and fit Dura Ace etc and get an equivalent to the top bike for under £3k.

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hill4544 [13 posts] 3 years ago
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Look like really nice machines. Shame that the only drivetrain options are Shimano though

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StoopidUserName [337 posts] 3 years ago
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nice bike and good on 'em for doing something different to just steel (I like their steel efforts btw) but can't help thinking they're a bit behind the curve...

...every bike manufacturer is offering disc brakes at the moment, this ain't gonna stop anytime soon (or ever?)

They could have designed this with a disc brake option from the start and saved themselves a fair bit of money in the long run.

Good luck to them but I'll never buy another non disc bike again.

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rggfddne [221 posts] 3 years ago
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StoopidUserName wrote:

...every bike manufacturer is offering disc brakes at the moment, this ain't gonna stop anytime soon (or ever?)

They could have designed this with a disc brake option from the start and saved themselves a fair bit of money in the long run.

Good luck to them but I'll never buy another non disc bike again.

This, at least for a more versatile bike - which is what genesis have normall excelled in.

(Or folding bikes, a brompton with discs would just be weird).

Though I'd still reckon on there being room for non-disc "sunday best" bikes that never see rain or traffic...

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DrJDog [422 posts] 3 years ago
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no discs?

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STATO [543 posts] 3 years ago
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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.

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fukawitribe [1946 posts] 3 years ago
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DrJDog wrote:

no discs?

Would they have been able to race it if they had ?

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fukawitribe [1946 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes
Gkam84 wrote:
fukawitribe wrote:
Gkam84 wrote:

BIG let down, the appeal of Genesis for me was the steel bike.

That has just lost my interest in the brand, just another generic carbon frame bike company now.

"just another generic carbon frame bike company now" Really ? I mean really ? So does that also suddenly make their steel race bikes shite, or inconsequential, now ? Anyway, your choice - sounds bloody harsh no matter what you think about carbon, carbon bikes or those that manufacture them.

Sorry, I meant the team Madison Genesis has lost its appeal for me, now they are racing carbon.

Ah - ok.

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 and no, it does not make their steel frames "shite" it just makes the brand less appealing because they are putting the team onto a carbon bike, when there was bugger all wrong with the steel

True, they have lost that uniqueness in the races that they use the carbon frames in rather than steel - but they're not solely using one or the other. As for something being wrong with the steel frames then, no, not as such - but sounds like they have something they rate higher for stage-/longer races. If it's better in some circumstances then so be it, unfortunate I agree - but I guess they're in it for the success on and off the track rather than waving the flag for one particular material over another without reason.

Gkam84 wrote:

and at least they had something different going for them from all the other generic carbon bikes on the market that brands give to team for racing.

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.

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Gkam84 [9108 posts] 3 years ago
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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.

The weight of the steel frame hasn't stopped Madison winning and getting good results, infact the riders seemed delighted about riding steel vs carbon for the 1kg or so difference it made was negligible at the speeds they are going.

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Gkam84 [9108 posts] 3 years ago
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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.  4

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Ghedebrav [1099 posts] 3 years ago
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If you ask me, it all started to go wrong when they let Phil Collins sing

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Ghedebrav [1099 posts] 3 years ago
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nowasps wrote:

Taking personal affront when a manufacturer comes out with a new product that you don't approve of, seems completely barking to me. Get a grip.

I think it demonstrates that Genesis are (were?) a much-loved brand for standing outside the herd, showing that steel can still be beautiful, practical and fast. Steel was really their USP (though of course they've been making aluminium bikes for ages too) and stick-in-the-muds like me who ride steel bikes out of preference (because of function as well as form) are a grumpy bunch, especially where the unquestioned dominance of carbon on the racing/club scene is concerned. So yeah, there's an outcry. I think Genesis would be a bit worried if there wasn't.

Whether this is a Dylan-goes-electric moment or the niche bicycle manufacturer version of new-recipe Coke remains to be seen. Probably neither, as I imagine they'll carry on making the Reynolds-tubed modern classics that they're known for.

GKam's point on the racing team is valid though. I followed the team because they raced on steel. Now, not so much.

Also the range just looks like shitty plastic versions of their real bikes  4 19

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JamieSTW [1 post] 3 years ago
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Sidestepping the whole, 'steel is no longer real for Genesis' debate. It's not a looker, is it?

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Vegita8 [49 posts] 3 years ago
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It is a "team" bike, that is why it is so expensive.

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