This good looking bike is the Verenti Technique, and it offers an aluminium frame, carbon fibre fork and Shimano Claris groupset for £399.
Verenti is the in-house brand of wiggle, first launched about five years ago, and we reported recently the news that the brand had unveiled several new models for 2015 with a focus on affordability. None is more affordable in its updated range than this Technique, which looks a very credible offering for the money.
Let’s dive into the details then. For that £399, you get a frame made from 6061 aluminium with a carbon fibre fork (with an alloy steerer), so it should be light, stiff and responsive, all the traits you want in a road bike. The gear and brake cables are routed externally, the frame takes a 27.2mm seatpost and while there are rear mudguard eyelets, there are none on the fork.
Looks are subjective, but most people that have clapped eyes on the Verenti have been impressed by the white paint finish and smart graphics. It’s not until you get up close to the components that you’re able to determine the price of the bike, and most people that have been asked to guess the price have been well off the mark.
Verenti has equipped the Technique with most of a Shimano Claris 16-speed groupset, not a common sight on bikes in this price range, so you really are getting a very well specced bike for the money. The Claris groupsets uses the same Dual Control as you get on Shimano’s more expensive groupsets like 105 and Ultegra. The downshift lever is behind the brake lever rather than a thumb button.
To put into perspective how well specced it is for the asking price, the Boardman Road Sport is £50 more and, while it too has an aluminium frame and Shimano Claris groupset, it only manages an aluminium fork compared to the Technique’s superior carbon fork. And you’ll have to find another £100 for the almost identically specced Giant Defy 5.
It’s not a full Claris groupset, just the shifters and front and rear derailleurs feature the Shimano label. The black chainset, a compact 50/34t setup, is a non-branded item and uses a square taper bottom bracket. The brake calipers are Tektro R312 dual pivot.
The wheels are a combination of Jalco aluminum rims with 32-hole lacing front and rear, and forged alloy hubs. The wheels are wrapped in Kenda Competition Kontender tyres in a 23mm width, with a shoulder tread pattern.
4ZA is a Belgian brand and supplies the aluminium handlebar, stem, seatpost and saddle. The stem has a handful of steerer tube spacers above and below it, and moving them around will allow the height of the handlebar to be adjusted to suit. The seatpost is a two-bolt design and makes saddle adjustment easy.
Rolling onto the road.cc Scales of Truth, the Technique weighs in at 10.24kg (22.57lb). The Technique is available in six sizes from XS to XXL, and it looks to have a geometry that sits some way between a race and sportive bike.
On paper the Technique looks a thoroughly compelling road bike for somebody new to cycling, for a bike to riding to work or college, or getting the miles in at the weekend. It’s currently out with a road.cc tester and we’ll be looking to see if the Technique ticks the boxes.
More info at www.wiggle.co.uk/verenti-technique-claris-2015/
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.