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The Pinarello Dogma F is an out-and-out race bike designed for competition at the highest level – Pinarello describes it as a Grand Tour-winning machine. For that reason it won't appeal to everyone – nor will the rather hefty sticker price, which places it firmly out of reach for mere mortals. But it does represent the zenith of contemporary road bike design and performance, and while its appearance may divide opinion, few can dispute its credentials and lineage as one of the most prominent bikes on the world stage today.
Is it really worth the huge outlay, though? To answer that, and to find out where it stands among the best road bikes out there, I put it through its paces over 1,500km, to better understand it and what makes it tick...
In a segment where cookie-cutter facades dominate proceedings, the Pinarello Dogma F – like its forebears – stands out with its unique kinked tubing blueprint. While it's not to everyone's taste, I personally appreciate the fact Pinarello continues to resist contemporary road bike design rhetoric in favour of tradition and staying true to its beliefs.
The tube profiling is nothing particularly new to Pinarello, having evolved through the years to what we see here and, whether you like it or not, it truly sets the Dogma apart from its rivals. While left field in many ways, visually, it still conforms to the classic parallel seat and head tube angles of yore – our size 54 test bike coming in at a tidy 73 and 73.7 degrees, respectively.
Our Dogma F is painted in a very distinct and refined colour called Midnight Venice, a two-tone metallic hue not too dissimilar to an evening sky. The predominantly blue colour scheme takes residence on the bottom half of the frame, helping to accentuate the wavy-yet-refined tubing, while black dominates the top tube and fork.
The Pinarello and Dogma wordmark logos don't mirror each other on each side of the frame but rather switch places, adding a sense of dynamism to the package. The balance of graphics comes in the form of an F symbol on each side of the seat tube, a Pinarello wordmark on the chainstays and inside the right side of the fork, a P logo on the head tube and Dogma glyph just below the headset on the top tube.
The bike is constructed from Carbon Toraya T1100 1K 'Dream Carbon' and has been built to accommodate electronic groupsets only. Asymmetric in design, the frame is manufactured in accordance with Pinarello's TiCR (total integrated cable routing) philosophy, meaning no cables are visible anywhere on the build, save for the brake hose entry points.
For the bottom bracket brigade, the Dogma F has an Italian threaded system.
The Dogma F has clearance for a maximum tyre size of 28mm, which puts it behind many of its rivals when it comes to the wider-is-better tyre viewpoint. Still, if you ask me, 28mm is plenty wide enough – even for the rough and grippy tarmac of the Surrey Hills.
Pinarello prides itself on accessibility, and while that might sound rich coming from a brand that makes high-end exotica like the bike on test here, what it means is that it caters for riders of all sizes. As a result, the Dogma F is available in 11 frame sizes ranging from 50 to 62.
It also gets 16 integrated bar/stem combinations and a brace of seatpost setback options.
On our 54cm bike, reach and stack measure in at a rather racy 378 and 532.3mm. The geometry is the same as the F12 and, with its 73.7-degree head angle, is somewhat less aggressive than its rivals but still poised enough to provide stable handling and neutral steering.
While the Dogma F can be configured in a variety of ways, our test bike has been built around a 12-speed Campagnolo Super Record EPS groupset. Its compact gearing of a 50/34-tooth chainset and 11-29T cassette is driven by 172.5mm ultra-torque CT TI Carbon cranks. It's a very premium setup and helps accentuate the bike's Italian theme.
What sets our test bike apart from anything else in the range is its wheelset – the brand new Campagnolo Hyperon Ultra. This is a premium rolling stock option that supersedes the Bora Ultra. Usually, a Super Record build such as this would come stock with Campagnolo Bora Ultras, so the Hyperons represent a significant upgrade.
Shod in Pirelli P Zero Race 26mm tyres, the Hyperons feature the typical glossy finish of Campagnolo's carbon fibre wheel offerings but still manage an understated aesthetic that complements the bike's visual cues.
At a claimed 1,240g for the pair, they're ridiculously light and help reduce the Dogma F's overall weight quite significantly. The bike weighed in at 6.88kg without pedals. Impressive.
The balance of the build comprises parts from Pinarello's in-house component arm, Most. As such, the cockpit is built using its Talon Ultra Light handlebar and Ultragrip Evo 3mm tape.
The axles are also from Most, in this case an Ultralight Custom Axle 12x100 at the front and 12x142 rear.
For the saddle, however, our build eschews the standard Most Lynx Ultrafast Superflow L Carbon for a Selle Italia SLR Boost TI 316 Superflow. While I'm not against the latter, it does seem a bit at odds with the rest of the build.
As a professional bike tester, you don't often connect with a bike immediately. Most of the time, you need a few days to tweak the setup and get to grips with the geometry, control layout and ergonomics, but the Dogma F is one of the very few bikes that felt 'just right' from the get-go, requiring very little if any adjustment during the test period. It felt rock solid from the start.
The first attribute to impress me was its pure speed on the flats. While not an out-an-out aero road bike – the Dogma F is more a hybrid between a pure climbing and an aero machine – the rate at which it consumed kilometres was astounding. Pinarello has done a considerable amount of work honing the frame design for better aerodynamics, and claims the frame and fork weights have been reduced by a respective 9 and 16% over the F12, the result of which has had no negative bearing on its aerodynamics.
The seatpost and handlebar boast similar weight savings, too. Design changes that were implemented to further bolster its slippery appearance come in the form of a narrower seat tube and seatpost as well as a remodelled down tube and seatstay configuration.
Similar measures were also carried out on the disc brake design blueprint. All this has resulted in a claimed 12% reduction in drag over the Dogma F12.
The sense of urgency doesn't wane when the road starts to spike upwards and the Dogma F's impressive climbing qualities come to the fore. At just 6.88kg (7.01kg with pedals), the Dogma F is one of the lighter bikes in its class and you can feel this in the hills.
I can only assume its ability to overcome gravity becomes exponential in the high mountains; I'm talking 10-20km climbs here.
During all my test rides, the Dogma F required less power to deliver the same average speeds as bikes such as the Merida Reacto and Scultura, Scott Foil, Orbea Orca Aero and Basso Diamante SV. In fact, it runs very close to the new Cannondale SuperSix Evo 4 Lab71, returning a similar sense of ride quality, flat speed and climbing efficiency – which comes down to the appreciably stiff bottom bracket, head tube and fork.
In twisty, serpentine environments, the Dogma F thrives. It's incredibly hard to unsettle it – and I tried on many occasions. The well-sorted geometry and near-perfectly balanced frame are perhaps the reason, and the bike undoubtedly masked my shortfalls as a somewhat nervous descender.
In the wind, the Dogma F stays planted – even in strong crosswinds. Save for the odd side gust – which will unsettle anyone – the bike has an uncanny ability to slice through the air with assurance. The Hyperon wheels are superb in these conditions, too. At 37mmm deep, they strike a balance between aerodynamics and climbing efficiency. They do well to thwart crosswind interference and stay true and predictable in most situations – in fact, they encourage you to push harder and track corners with resolute confidence.
Apart from the odd puncture or two, the Pirelli P Zero Race tyres were good. While an out-an-out race tyre, they were pretty good for the duration of the test period, delivering decent compliance and rolling efficiency. This improved using lower tyres pressures which take advantage of the wheels' 21mm internal rim width; owing to the impressive frame compliance, I ran the tyres a little harder than normal – 50/70psi front/rear – which delivered a good combination of grip, comfort and speed for my 62kg.
Stopping power is just right. The Campagnolo Super Record two-piston brakes are rock solid and rich in feel and modulation. Clamping 160mm rotors both front and rear, the brakes are powerful and add a sense of control to the experience, which is a boon on fast and tricky descents.
Coming back to the chainset and gearing, the Dogma could do with bigger 52/36 chainrings, as I did find myself spinning at high cadences on slight downhill sections. But, overall, the 50/34 paired with the 11-29 cassette is fairly well suited to rolling terrain and seemed to flatten out most of the very steep kickers that comprised my test loops.
The Pinarello Dogma F is an expensive machine, no question. In standard trim – without the Hyperon Ultra wheels – it will still set you back a colossal £11,900, which is outrageous. I can't argue there. There is also the option to spec the frame with Shimano Ultegra R8100, which will drop the entry point to £9,500. In the configuration tested, I suspect the price to inch nearer to £12,400.
The Dogma F has been designed for duty at the highest rungs of professional bike racing, developed with input from professional bike riders and the like, and needs to be critiqued in that context. It wasn't designed for you and me, but we can still ride it if we pay the premium – and it will make you a faster rider as a result, that's for sure.
As far as performance goes it's so well-rounded and easy to ride that you often forget you're pedalling a £12k superbike. The ride quality is buttery-smooth and the riding position, while perhaps a bit too aggressive for most, felt fairly comfortable to me. Sure, its looks won't appeal to everyone, but they will draw attention. Apart from the paper-thin Pirelli tyres and battery charger port in the handlebar popping out from time to time, it's a bike that's very hard to fault – in this context, that is.
Looking at its rivals, it's definitely up there with the most expensive bikes in the category, rubbing shoulders with the new Cannondale SuperSix Evo 4 Lab71 (£12,500), Specialized's S-Works Tarmac SL7 (£13,000) and Trek's Madone SLR 9 (£13,500).
A couple of thousand less will bag you the £10,499 Scott Foil RC Pro that thoroughly impressed me, or the £8,500 Merida Reacto Team, which looks like a right bargain in this company.
If money is no object, the Pinarello Dogma F makes a convincing case for itself as a thoroughbred, out-and-out superbike. It's fast but also incredibly compliant and will make you smile every time you ride it. As far as high-end racing bikes go, it's up there in the top three in my opinion, but will require a back-to-back thrashing against its closest rivals before we can make a final judgement. Bring on the group test.
Perfectly balanced, superfast thoroughbred race bike
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Pinarello Dogma F Super Record EPS
Size tested: 535mm
About the bike
List the components used to build up the bike.
CRANKSET AND CHAINRINGS
Campagnolo Super Record eps 12s
Campagnolo stiffness increaser eps 12s
Campagnolo Super Record eps 12s
Campagnolo Super Record eps 12s
Campagnolo Record 12s
Campagnolo super record
FRONT BRAKE DISC
Campagnolo Super Record 2 pistons caliper, 160mm rotor
REAR BRAKE DISC
Campagnolo Super Record 2 pistons caliper, 160mm rotor
MOST Talon Ultra Light
MOST Ultragrip Evo 3mm - Black
Selle Italia SLR Boost TI 316 Superflow
Pinarello Aero seatpost with 3D printed titanium top seatclamp and bolts
Seatclamp Twinforce, titanium bolts
WHEELS AND TIRES
Pirelli P Zero Race 26mm - Black, 127 tpi aramid breaker. Max tyre size 28mm (width as measured)
Campagnolo Hyperon Ultra
MOST Ultralight Custom Axle 12x100 & 12x142, Tool-free removal
Tell us what the bike is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about the bike?
The bike is aimed at the out-and-out racer and Pinarello describes it as 'a race bike designed for competition at the highest level'.
Where does this model sit in the range? Tell us briefly about the cheaper options and the more expensive options
As it stands, the Pinarello Dogma F Super Record EPS sits at the very top of the Italian company's bicycle line-up.
Frame and fork
Tell us about the build quality and finish of the frame and fork?
Amazing build quality and attention to detail. The level of finishing is top notch and what you'd expect from a bike of this calibre.
Tell us about the materials used in the frame and fork?
Both the frame and fork are constructed from Carbon Toraya T1100 1K 'Dream Carbon'.
FRAME - TorayCa T1100 1K Dream Carbon with Nanoalloy technology, TiCR™ cable routing, Italian BB, UCI approved
FORK - F Onda Fork with ForkFlap™, 1.5in upper and lower steerer, Ultra Light Headset bearings
Tell us about the geometry of the frame and fork?
The bike is on the racier side of the sizing and geometry spectrum but doesn't feel that way owing to the comfortable ride quality. The geometry is the same as the F12 – less aggressive than its rivals but still sharp and poised enough to provide nimble handling and sharp, reactive steering.
Riding the bike
Was the bike comfortable to ride? Tell us how you felt about the ride quality.
Yes – surprisingly comfortable with a beautiful ride quality.
Did the bike feel stiff in the right places? Did any part of the bike feel too stiff or too flexible?
Despite the frame compliance, the Dogma F is stiff in the right places – especially the BB area, fork and headset.
How did the bike transfer power? Did it feel efficient?
Instant – it's super-reactive to pedal inputs.
Was there any toe-clip overlap with the front wheel? If so was it a problem?
I'm 175cm tall, and on a 54cm frame I had no issues with toe overlap.
How would you describe the steering? Was it lively neutral or unresponsive? Reactive.
Tell us some more about the handling. How did the bike feel overall? Did it do particular things well or badly?
It's confidence inspiring at high speed – especially descents – and very reactive to steering inputs.
Which components had the most effect (good or bad) on the bike's comfort? would you recommend any changes?
The Campagnolo Super Record EPS build complements the bike, and the whole build feels purposeful and well thought out. Of course, there are a few anomalies such as the Campagnolo Hyperon Ultra wheels and Selle Italia saddle, which are not stock items.
Which components had the most effect (good or bad) on the bike's stiffness? would you recommend any changes?
Everything worked in harmony.
Tell us some more about the drivetrain. Anything you particularly did or didn't like? Any components which didn't work well together?
Campagnolo has just announced the launch of its new 12-speed Super Record Wireless, but the Super Record EPS build featured here is still a work of art. While it came specced with a 50/36T chainset, a 52/39T wouldn't go under-appreciated here.
Wheels and tyres
Superlight, beautiful to look at. Roll well with little in the way of any flex.
Tell us some more about the wheels.Did they work well in the conditions you encountered? Would you change the wheels? If so what for?
The Hyperon Ultras are brand new wheels from Campagnolo. They are super-stiff, light and incredibly good at staving off crosswinds while still offering impressive straight-line speed. They look good too, and raise the premium feel of the Dogma F package.
Pirelli's P Zero Race 26mm tyres are race specific and prone to puncturing if used as an everyday option.
Campagnolo Super Record EPS still uses the iconic thumbshifter, which is intuitive and easy to operate. This paired with the stiff and aesthetically pleasing Most Talon Ultra Light cockpit makes for one of the better control layouts in the segment.
Did you enjoy riding the bike? Yes
Would you consider buying the bike? Yes, but it's very pricey.
Would you recommend the bike to a friend? I'd recommend this bike to someone racing at or very close to the highest level, as the Pinarello Dogma F is one of the best all-round race bikes currently available.
How does the price compare to that of similar bikes in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
It's expensive – no question – but also on a par within the context of high-end race bikes.
Use this box to explain your overall score
The Pinarello Dogma F delivers one of the best ride qualities in class; it's super fast both in a straight line and in the hills, and its confidence-inspiring handling makes anyone who rides it feel like a hero on the descents. To nitpick, I'd want a power meter as standard at this price point but Campagnolo (at the time of publishing) does not produce one. Otherwise, it's incredibly difficult to fault. Bravo.
About the tester
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Novice
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, mtb, Gravel and Elite Cycling eSports
Aaron is the editor of off-road.cc. He completed his BA honours at the University of Cape Town before embarking on a career in journalism. As the former tech editor of Cyclingnews and Bike Perfect, digital editor of Bicycling magazine and associate editor of TopCar, he's travelled the world writing about bikes and anything with wheels for the past 17 years. A competitive racer and Stravaholic, he’s twice ridden the Cape Epic, raced nearly every mountain bike stage race in South Africa and completed the Haute Route Alps. He's also a national-level time triallist and eSports racer, too - having captained South Africa at both the 2022 and 2023 UCI Cycling eSports World Championships.