Sub-£500 alloy road bike carrying the name of Francesco Moser lands in the road.cc bike shed

The £488.60 Moser Speed carries the name of Francesco Moser on its down tube, a professional cyclist who in 1977 won the road race world championships and the Giro d’Italia in 1984, along with a string of other victories in cycling’s five monuments, including three consecutive victories in Paris-Roubaix. Perhaps his most famous feat was to break Eddy Merckx’s hour record in 1984.

His name is found on a range of road bikes, from a hand-made Italian carbon fibre bike at the top of the range and, at the entry-level, this alloy framed Speed. Moser bikes are brought into the UK by online retailer Wiggle. This model, one of a six-bike range, combines a smart 7005 T6 aluminium frame, carbon fork and Shimano Sora double groupset. It looks like a great package for anyone new to cycling and looking to purchase a well specced road bike.

The frame has distinctive triangular top and down tubes, and a smart presence with its white paint finish and stylish decals. It's designed with a semi-compact geometry, with a slightly sloping top tube. The gear and brake cables are routed externally, so they’re easy to service, and a replaceable alloy derailleur hanger is a good damage prevention measure at the dropout.

With carbon fibre blades and an alloy steerer, the fork is painted to match the frame. The headset is a simple straight 1 1/8in design.

The bike wears a Shimano Sora 9-speed groupset with a 12-28 cassette paired with a FSA MegaExo compact 50/34 chainset, so that’s a good spread of gears if you’re planning a few longer rides with hills. Moser offer the frame in five sizes and the crank arm length is specific to the size. On this 58cm model they measure 175mm. That's a nice touch, something often overlooked by other manufacturers, and shows that Moser really care about fit. The stem lenght and handlebar width also relate to frame size.

Fulcrum’s Racing Sport 7 clincher wheels are reliable and stiff with a decent weight of 1,849g for the price. They’re fitted with a pair of Vittoria Zaffiro 23mm tyres. The handlebar is an FSA Vero with a compact bend, so the drops aren’t too low or far away when you want to go a bit faster in an aero tuck, with a width that is specific to the frame size. An FSA OS-190 stem and SL-280 seatpost, and Selle San Marco Ponza saddle complete the package.

On our scales, the bike weighs 9.4kg (20.75lb). That's not too bad for a bike at this price.

Now, the sub-£500 road bike market is a hot one, with lots of contenders from the big brands, and smaller less known companies, all vying for the attention of the new cyclists getting into the sport. Our £500 to £900 buyer’s guide gives a good overview of what you can expect for the money, and against them the Moser Speed stacks up well. However, it must be pointed out that it is a £700 bike reduced by 30%. That does mean you get more for your money, but we're not sure how long this offer stands for.

If you’re reading this and you are new to road cycling, then might we recommend a read of our guide to buying your first road bike. It really is packed with lots of useful information on where to start, the difference between frame materials, choosing the right size, components and wheels to expect and lots more.

More details on the Moser Speed at www.wiggle.co.uk

David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.