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It costs £1,000 and combines an aluminium frame with a Sora groupset, it's the new Diverge E5 Sport

What we’ve got here is a £1,000 Specialized Diverge sporting an aluminium frame, carbon fork and Shimano Sora groupset with Tektro Mira mechanical disc brakes.

The Diverge is the company’s adventure, gravel, call-it-what-you-want road bike. It’s designed for tackling rough roads and gravel tracks basically, with bigger tyre clearance, disc brakes and geometry that splits the difference between a road bike and a cyclocross bike.

- Gravel and adventure bikes

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The most obvious thing about this second cheapest Diverge is the lack of the Future Shock suspension headset that is a key feature of the more expensive Diverge models, and which I was impressed with on the range-topping S-Works Diverge a little while ago.

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Clearly, something has to give at this price, but it also removes a bit of complexity and for the cyclist looking for a thousand pound bike, that’s probably no bad thing.

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It’s a smart looking frame made from Premium E5 aluminium and shares the same “Open Road Geometry” and dropped seatstays as the pricier Diverge models. A FACT carbon fork plugs into the tapered head tube and there are mudguard mounts and a rear rack can be fitted using the seat collar.

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Your thousand pounds gets you Shimano Sora 9-speed shifters and derailleurs with a Sunrace 11-32t cassette and Praxis Alba 2d 48/32t chainset. That’s the sort of gearing that should get you up the steepest climbs and make riding a fully loaded bike that much easier.

Disc brakes are a key feature of the Diverge line and this model is equipped with Tektro Mira mechanical flat mount disc brakes. It’s a shame not to get hydraulic brakes but there are few bikes that offer them at this price.

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Wheels are Axis Sport Discs fitted with Espoir Sport 30mm tyres with a double BlackBelt puncture belt. The tyres are a strong indicator of who Specialized has in mind for this model, less adventure and off-road riding and more commuting and touring riding we suspect. It does look like being a great commuting option.

- 23 of the best commuting bikes

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There’s nothing to stop you fitting some chunkier gravel of course, and that’s something we’ll look to during the test period. There's certainly no shortage of good adventure and gravel tyres in the office at the moment!

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Elsewhere it’s all Specialized branded equipment, from the Body Geometry Toupe Sport saddle to the S-Wrap tape on an aluminium Shallow Drop handlebar and 3D forged stem.

On the scales this 56cm bike weighs 10kg (22lb). That's all for now, full review coming soon.

More info at www.specialized.com

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.