Strengths: Smooth, stiff, and beautiful. You will be hard pressed to find a better bike than this one. Colnago, Merckx, and a few others should take note of this wonderful bike, and realize that name alone will only carry you so far.
I have an older Pinarello Opera with carbon stays, a Scandium Aluminum frame, and a Pro-lite Carbon Frame that use for rides at work. I went in search of a stiff and comfortable bike, and my reward was the Opera Leonardo. The first time I roade the bike I knew I had found something exceptional. The roads feel was significantly dampened, but I was still very much tuned into the ride.
The handeling is sublime. At times, the ride is so smooth that it doesn't seem to feel as sharp as a harder ride. However, after putting it through it's paces, it si not only every bit as sharp in cornering and handeling as the other bikes, but even more so. Because it is so smooth, you can take turns at blinding speeds while remianing in confidant, full control.
Even with the increased comfort, the frame is phenominally stiff. It was only while riding out of the saddle on an extremely steep hill, pulling and pushing as hard as I could, that I could detect even a little flex in the frame. My steel frame would have been moaning under the stress.
The finish on this frame is simply gorgeous. The naked carbon comes through beautifully, and the silver accents highlight the black carbon wonderfully. The Dura Ace group on the bike makes the whole thing like a work of art. This is an extremely pretty bike. This is one that you'll not only want to be seen on, but is tough enough to get you anywhere you want to go.
I've been privlidged to ride a few 'higher' class bikes. Although I cannot say the Opera is better than them, neither can I say that these 'higher' end bikes are better than the Opera. I simply cannot imagine dropping an extra $2,000 dollars on a frame that will only give me parity with Opera.
Strengths: Finish, weight, comfort, strength, lack of flex. I rate it 5 for value. I justify this by comparing it to the obvious alternatives rather than saying £4000 worth of bike is good value.
Weaknesses: The rider!! Buying this thing removes any excuses I've got for riding like an asthmatic geriatric!!
A bit pricy, but when compared to things like a C-50, very reasonable and a better ride. You are paying for a top end product - they do tend to cost.
Having owned a beautiful Principia TT28 for 7 years, I wanted something more comfy to ride, but without being too "soft" I'm a pretty big type (ex-rugby player) so strength was important. The Principia has now become my commuting bike, so time for a new "toy". The first ride was just a revelation. It felt like a magic carpet ride and things have only got better since. It doesn't feel as quick as my Principia, but nothing ever has. However, a quick glance at the stopwatch shows it is every bit as quick. There is no flex or bend in the frame at any time, whether going up or down or on the flat - in the saddle or out. The typically rutted and rough Devon roads take on a new feeling on this bike. I felt I could ride for twice as long. No numb hands which has been a problem in the past on some rides. The bike was set up beautifully for me by Richard - the Dura-Ace is sublime. I found myself riding along looking for hills and just muttering "fantastic" to myself.
I had tried a few other carbon framed bikes - all were excellent. The C-50 was lovely, but simply not worth the (considerable) extra cost - I preferred the Principia!! The Orbea Orca was a serious thought, but the Opera was just better in a rather difficult to describe way. Various Looks didnt live up to the hype. It is expensive, but has been worth every penny.
Weaknesses: Expensive, but no more than other top-of-the-line carbon fiber framesets.
After a lifetime of 'steel is real,' the change to a carbon fiber/aluminum frameset is a ride with a completely different personality. The dampening of road vibration and increased comfort is most obvious. Then there's lighter weight, plenty of stiffness and sufficiently lively responsiveness. The design and finish are state-of-the-art Italian. All in all, it's hard to teach this old dog new tricks, but it looks like anybody who appreciates Italian bikes at their finest will love the Opera Leonardo.
any guesses on the chance that Piepoli's stage 10 sample will be positive? Following Millar's comment about performances looking too good to be true, what are the chances that a clean, 37 year old Piepoli rides away from the peloton, drops Frank Schleck, and as he rides away with Cobo actually waits ... Read More »
Here are a few pics of the new Italian redhead in my life. She is replacing the Spanish mistress (Orbea Mitis). I have been for a short ride but set up wasn't good so will need to make some adjustments tonight to seat height and angle. Damping of rough road surface was noticeable improvement thou ... Read More »
I am getting closer and closer to a new purchase.
At present I am seriously considering the Opera Leonardo FP in silver/red - because I think it will suit the sort of riding I do and hell, simply because I think it looks fantastic!
( [url]http://www.operabike.com/home.php?lang=e[/url] )
Becau ... Read More »
Can anybody tell me how the Paris Carbon compares with the Opera Leonardo FP?
Unfortunately I dont think I will be able to test ride either of them before I purchase to see if they suit me and the type of cycling I enjoy as they are both pretty rare around these parts.
I am looking for an u ... Read More »