Boardman has a wide range that covers most sectors of cycling, including road bikes, cyclocross and gravel bikes, and urban/hybrid options. Here are the highlights.
Previously, Boardman offered its high-end Elite lineup and its more accessible Performance bikes, the two parts being highly distinct from one another. Things were rejigged in 2018 to make the range more integrated, the 9 Series taking over from the Elite bikes and the 8 Series replacing the Performance bikes. This continues into 2019.
The AIRs are aero road bikes that are available in 9 Series (higher end) options only. They are designed with truncated airfoil tube profiles that are deeper and narrower than those that you’ll find on most other aero road bikes. The cutaway section of the seat tube is designed to work best with a 25mm-wide tyre although there’s space for a 28mm option if you prefer. Boardman's T10 aero fork takes a standard external brake.
The most affordable AIR is the £1,750 9.0 which is built up with a mid-level Shimano 105 groupset and Vision Team Comp 35 wheels.
The AIR 9.6 (£3,800, above) is equipped with a full Shimano Ultegra Di2 (electronic shifting) groupset and 50mm-deep Knight TLA wheels.
Knight says that it has worked to optimise airflow on the trailing edge of the wheel which is a different approach from a lot of major wheel brands. These wheels are tubeless ready, designed to be easier to setup with a standard track pump than most other tubeless wheels out there, although you’d have to swap from the standard Vittoria Corsa clinchers.
The top-level air is the 9.8 (above) at £6,000. This comes with a high-tech spec that includes a SRAM Red eTap wireless groupset and Zipp's excellent 404 Firecrest wheels.
The SLRs are designed as all-round road bikes, and they've available in the 9 Series in both rim brake and disc brake formats. You can get 8 Series SLRs (see below) in both carbon fibre and aluminium, although they are rim brake only.
The SLRs aren't aero road bikes but the frame has been developed with the use of CFD (computational fluid dynamics), the idea being to provide an improved aerodynamic performance.
The geometry is slightly more relaxed than that of the AIR bikes (above) to put a little less strain on your back and neck, but you'll still be riding in an efficient position.
There are five different levels of 9 Series SLRs, each available in a rim brake version and a disc brake version that's £200-£300 more expensive. The 9.0s (RRPs £1,500 and £1,800, but now available for less, see the table below) are equipped with Shimano 105 groupsets, the 9.2s (RRPs £2,000 and £2,300, above) have the mechanical version of Shimano Ultegra while the 9.4s (£2,900 and £3,200) get Ultegra Di2 electronic shifting.
The 9.6s (£3,600 and £3,900) have Shimano Ultegra Di2 as well, but you get an upgrade from Boardman's own wheels to 35mm deep Knight Composites TLAs.
There are no SLRs with Shimano's top-level Dura-Ace groupset. Instead, the 9.8s (£5,700 and £5,900, above) offer wireless shifting with SRAM Red eTap and are equipped with Zipp's 202 Firecrest wheels.
The 8 Series SLRs are available in both carbon fibre and aluminium options. They are built to geometries that are similar to those of the 9 Series models (although not exactly the same), meaning that they split the difference between traditional race bikes and endurance bikes.
The Boardman SLR 8.9 Carbon (£1,000, above), which is available in both men's and women's versions, comes with a frame that was developed with the use of CFD (computational fluid dynamics) to provide aerodynamic efficiency.
The down tube, seat tube and fork legs have truncated airfoil profiles, meaning that they’re shaped to reduce drag with the trailing edge cut off square – a design technique that's widely used in the bike industry. The tube profiles are actually the same as those of the high-end SLR 9.8 (see above).
The SLR 8.9 Carbon comes with a Shimano Tiagra 10-speed groupset aside from Tektro R315 long arm brakes which have been specced to allow the use of mudguards (you get the relevant eyelets) and 28mm tyres.
When we reviewed this bike we were really impressed.
"The Boardman SLR 8.9 Carbon is a quick and dynamic road bike with practical features that make it suitable for year-round riding, and it offers very good value for money," we said.
The SLR 8.9 Alloy (above) is an interesting one in that it’s the same price as the SLR 8.9 Carbon at £1,000. The main differences are that you get an alloy frame (you worked that out for yourself, right?) — it’s triple butted 6061 aluminium alloy — and a Shimano 105 11-speed groupset, which is a level higher than the SLR 8.9 Carbon's Tiagra. You also get a Fizik Antares saddle rather than Boardman’s own.
The tube profiles aren’t exactly the same as those of the SLR 8.9 Carbon but the frames are recognisably from the same family. Smooth welding gives a carbon look.
The cheapest 8 Series SLR model is the 8.6 Alloy which is available in both men's and women's versions. It has a 7005 aluminium alloy frame, a full carbon fork and Shimano's 8-speed Claris groupset. That's a lot of bike for £550.
The CXR bikes are designed for cyclocross and are available in both 9 Series and 8 Series models. They've been reduced in price now so you can grab yourself a bargain.
The 9 Series CXRs are built around a carbon frame and fork with flat mount disc brakes and 12mm thru axles, as opposed to standard quick releases. You get enough tyre clearance to cope with typical muddy race conditions.
The most affordable 9 Series CXR is the £1,600 9.0 (above) which is equipped with a SRAM Apex 1 groupset; you get a single 40-tooth chainring and an 11-36-tooth cassette. If you want to switch to a double chainset at some time in the future, you can add a band-on front derailleur to the frame. It comes with tubeless-ready wheels and tyres and, like all 9 Series bikes, it has a saddle from Fizik.
The CXR 9.2 (£1,920, above) is fitted with a SRAM Force 1x groupset while the CXR 9.4 (£2,560) has Shimano Ultegra/Deore XT Di2 shifting.
There's just one 8 Series CXR and that's the CXR 8.9 (£1,000, above) — a highly credible entry-level cyclocross race bike. The 7005 aluminium alloy frame is smooth welded, doing a good impression of carbon in terms of looks, while the fork is full carbon.
This one is built up with a SRAM Apex 1x groupset, a 44-tooth chainset matched with a very wide ranging 11-42-tooth cassette. It’s fitted with 33mm-wide tyres from Clement, although there’s plenty of space for something fatter.
If you do want to take it on the road and use it for commuting, for example, the CXR 8.9 is fitted with mudguard and rack mounts.
The ADV series of aluminium adventure bikes spans Boardman's 9 Series and 8 Series.
The single 9 Series model is the ADV 9.0 (£1,650, above) which is built around a triple butted 6061 aluminium frame with smooth welds. With a slacker head angle than the 8 Series models, it's designed to be a little more off-road capable and a little less road-focused.
The bike is flat mount standard and uses 12mm thru axles front and rear. As well as bottle cage mounts in the usual two positions, there’s a third set on the underside of the down tube.
The ADV 9.0 is built up with a SRAM Rival 1x (single chainring) groupset, including hydraulic disc brakes. The tubeless ready wheels are fitted with Clement 650b x 50mm tyres. If you switch to 700c wheels you’ll be able to fit tyres up to about 40mm wide.
The ADV 8.8 (above), available in both standard and women’s versions (both £750), is built around a 7005 aluminium alloy frame and a full-carbon fork. It comes with clearance for wide tyres (it’s fitted with 38mm-wide Schwalbe G-Ones) and eyelets for mudguards and a rack.
This bike comes with a Shimano Sora 9-speed groupset — including a sub-compact 48/32-tooth chainset for gearing that’s suitable for riding off the beaten track — and cable-operated TRP Spyre disc brakes.
When we reviewed the ADV 8.8 we said, "Well made, well specced and fun to ride, this latest adventure machine covers plenty of bases, from blasting the local gravel byways to year-round commuting. It's a lot of bike for not a lot of money."
Boardman offers two ASR all-season road bikes in its 8 Series. The frames are steel, the forks are full carbon, and the geometries are designed to offer stability and comfort. Both models come with mudguards and disc brakes.
We reviewed the £1,299.99 Boardman ASR 8.9 (above) and said that it is "a really good value package that offers a relaxed ride with the classic looks and feel of steel, the modern convenience of hydraulic discs brakes, and clearance for wide tyres".
This model has a Reynolds 725 frame with reflective orange decals and more reflectives on the mudguards to help you get noticed in the dark. It is fitted with Shimano's reliable 105 groupset and Vittoria's Rubino Pro G+ tyres in a 28mm width.
The ASR 8.8 (£849.99) has a cheaper 4130 cromo steel frame but still gets a carbon fork. The groupset is Shimano Sora this time, two levels below the ASR 8.9's 105, while the disc brakes are cable-operated TRP Spyres.
Boardman’s URB – as in urban – bikes are designed to be practical and straightforward, hence aluminium frames with mudguard and rack mounts, 1x drivetrains (so there's a single chainring and no front derailleur to worry about), hydraulic disc brakes and hard-wearing grips and saddles. They look pretty cool too!
The URB 8.8 (£699.99, above) is the entry-level model in the range with a SRAM NX1 groupset, Tektro HD-R310 brakes, and 32mm-wide Vittoria Zaffiro Pro tyres.
When we reviewed this bike we said, "The Boardman URB 8.8 is an impressively quick and fast-handling hybrid-style bike that will allow fit riders to give roadies a run for their money away from the lights. It's also great value."
We did, though, wonder whether new riders might find the ride quality just a little too harsh.
The URB 8.9 (£849.99) uses the same aluminium frame and fork and Tektro brakes but it's built up with a Shimano Alfine 8-speed hub gear (the gearing is included within the rear hub so there are no derailleurs on this bike).
The top-level URB 9.4 (above) is much more expensive at £1,999.99, although it does offer some high level components. This one comes with a Shimano Alfine 11-speed hub with Di2 electronic shifting, Shimano Metrea brakes and a Gates GXP belt drive system, so there's no chain to get rusty in the rain.
Boardman offers a wide range of HYB hybrid bikes that range in price from the £550 HYB 8.6 to the £1,000 HYB 8.9. Each is built around an aluminium alloy frame and is equipped with disc brakes.
The mid-range HYB 8.8 (£750, above) looks like very good value. It has a smooth welded 6061 alloy frame and a full carbon fork. It is fitted with Shimano Deore components, hydraulic disc brakes and an FSA single ring chainset.
The 35mm-wide Schwalbe Citizen tyres come with a Kevlar puncture protection belt underneath the tread.
The MXT bikes are built around aluminium frames too and are also fitted with disc brakes but, unlike the HYBs, these have suspension forks and are suitable for rougher roads.
The cheaper of the two models (both are available in standard and women's versions) is the MTX 8.6 (above) at £500. Even at this price you get hydraulic disc brakes courtesy of Tektro.
If you can stretch to £650, the MTX 8.8 comes with a better fork and a Shimano Deore 2 x 10-speed groupset.
|Model||Bike type||Frame material||Groupset||Brakes||Price|
|SLR 9.8 Disc||Endurance||Carbon fibre||SRAM eTap||Disc||£4,199.00|
|SLR 9.8||Endurance||Carbon fibre||SRAM eTap||Rim||£3,299.00|
|SLR 9.6 Disc||Endurance||Carbon fibre||Shimano Ultegra Di2||Disc||£3,199.00|
|SLR 9.6||Endurance||Carbon fibre||Shimano Ultegra Di2||Rim||£2,999.00|
|SLR 9.4 Disc||Endurance||Carbon fibre||Shimano Ultegra Di2||Disc||£2,299.00|
|SLR 9.4||Endurance||Carbon fibre||Shimano Ultegra Di2||Rim||£1,799.00|
|SLR 9.2 Disc||Endurance||Carbon fibre||Shimano Ultegra||Disc||£1,999.00|
|SLR 9.2||Endurance||Carbon fibre||Shimano Ultegra||Rim||£1,599.00|
|SLR 9.0 Disc||Endurance||Carbon fibre||Shimano 105||Disc||NA|
|SLR 9.0||Endurance||Carbon fibre||Shimano 105||Rim||£1,399.00|
|ADV 9.0||Gravel||Aluminium||SRAM Rival 1||Disc||£1,399.00|
|ADV 8.9||Gravel||Aluminium||Shimano Tiagra||Disc||£1,000.00|
|ADV 8.8||Gravel||Aluminium||Shimano Sora||Disc||£750.00|
|ADV 8.8 Women's||Gravel||Aluminium||Shimano Sora||Disc||£750.00|
|AIR 9.8||Aero||Carbon fibre||SRAM eTap||Rim||NA|
|AIR 9.6||Aero||Carbon fibre||Shimano Ultegra Di2||Rim||£2,999.00|
|AIR 9.4||Aero||Carbon fibre||Shimano Ultegra Di2||Rim||£2,399.00|
|AIR 9.2||Aero||Carbon fibre||Shimano Ultegra||Rim||£1,649.00|
|AIR 9.2 Women's||Aero||Carbon fibre||Shimano Ultegra||Rim||NA|
|AIR 9.0||Aero||Carbon fibre||Shimano 105||Rim||£1,349.00|
|CXR 9.4||Cyclocross||Carbon fibre||Shimano Ultegra/XT Di2||Disc||£2,559.00|
|CXR 9.2||Cyclocross||Carbon fibre||SRAM Force 1||Disc||£1,919.00|
|CXR 9.0||Cyclocross||Carbon fibre||SRAM Apex 1||Disc||NA|
|CXR 8.9||Cyclocross||Aluminium||SRAM Apex 1||Disc||£1,000.00|
|ASR 8.9||Endurance||Steel||Shimano 105||Disc||£1,300.00|
|SLR 8.9 Carbon||Endurance||Carbon fibre||Shimano Tiagra||Rim||£850.00|
|SLR 8.9 Carbon Women's||Endurance||Carbon fibre||Shimano Tiagra||Rim||£850.00|
|SLR 8.9 Alloy||Endurance||Aluminium||Shimano 105||Rim||£1,000.00|
|ASR 8.8||Endurance||Steel||Shimano Sora||Disc||£850.00|
|SLR 8.8 Alloy||Endurance||Aluminium||Shimano Sora||Rim||£750.00|
|SLR 8.6 Alloy||Endurance||Aluminium||Shimano Claris||Rim||£600.00|
|SLR 8.6 Alloy Women's||Endurance||Aluminium||Shimano Claris||Rim||£600.00|
The aim of road.cc buyer's guides is to give you the most, authoritative, objective and up-to-date buying advice. We continuously update and republish our guides, checking prices, availability and looking for the best deals.
Our guides include links to websites where you can buy the featured products. Like most sites we make a small amount of money if you buy something after clicking on one of those links. We want you to be happy with what you buy, so we only include a product if we think it's one of the best of its kind.
As far as possible that means recommending equipment that we have actually reviewed, but we also include products that are popular, highly-regarded benchmarks in their categories.
road.cc buyer's guides are maintained by the road.cc tech team. Email us with comments, corrections or queries.
Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been road.cc technical editor for over a decade, 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 winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now over 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.