Looking for a new road bike and it needs to be made from carbon fibre to an endurance geometry and have disc brakes? This Pavo GranFondo Disc from Austrian brand Simplon is all those things.
Simplon is an Austrian brand that has just landed in the UK. The brand was formed in 1961 and the name comes from a nearby 2,000m mountain pass in the Valais Alps. As inspiration for names go that's pretty cool.
So what have we got exactly? The frame and fork are made from carbon with a claimed frame weight of 870g. That's race bike territory. There are disc brakes with thru-axles and flat mounts at both ends. The key tubes are oversized, the generous dimensions providing plenty of stiffness, but to ensure there's ample comfort, Simplon has flattened the seat tube and employed Vibrex seatstays to provide some degree of deflection to smooth out vibrations and impacts.
There are some standout details. The bottom bracket area is massive, with generous reinforcing material to ensure there can be no flex when pedalling. The seat clamp is hidden away inside the frame, as are the cables and brake hoses. It's a very nicely finished frame, we're most impressed. A nice paint job and we're liking the colour too, but we're easily swayed by a nice shade of blue.
The attraction of buying a bike from Simplon is that an online bike builder lets you choose the bike of your dreams. Or budget. You can change just about everything getting the right component mix but also ensure the bike fits with different length stems and width handlebars and a saddle you know to match your bum. Spec a bike then deliver arrange it through your local dealer and you'll be riding a bike you've customised. We've haven't done that, we've got a demo bike that would cost £4,699 to replicate, due to the Shimano Ultegra Di2 groupset and excellent DT Swiss R24 DB Spline wheels. We've reviewed these wheels in the past and been impressed with their performance.
The build is completed with 25mm wide Schwalbe One tyres, SLR Selle Italia saddle and Simplon branded handlebar, stem and seatpost complete the build. On the scales, it weighs 7.3kg (16lb). That's a very respectable weight for a 56cm carbon endurance bike with disc brakes.
On first inspection, the bike impresses, but it faces some stiff competition in this increasingly crowded endurance bike sector. If you want endurance, carbon and disc brakes, there's the new Specialized Roubaix, Canyon Endurance and Whyte Wessex to name a few examples.
We’ll find out how the bike rides when we get it out on the road. Watch out for the full review soon. More at www.simplon.com/en
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.