We don't know if it's inherent in the culture or something intrinsic to the language, but Italian speech is rife with hyperbole and colorful idioms and we love it. The effortless invocation of the Madonna for every possible instance of superlatives is just one of many examples of exaggerated Italian flourishes; the boundless possibilities of using "cazzo" as an insult, as praise, or as an ordinary turn of phrase is unmatched even by the rich vulgar creativity of English Hooligans and American gangstas. So it should come as no surprise that from this great tradition of linguistic free license we get the Bianchi Infinito, a more forgiving breed of race bike that required two years of research and development and a year's worth of race testing before being unveiled to the public.We'll admit that getting our meager minds around the concept of infinity has mystified us since we learned about Zeno in Philosophy 101, but in that hyperbolic Italian way Bianchi feels no compunctions about summoning eternity to make a point about this frame: as the top model in Bianchi's C2C (Coast 2 Coast) line-up, the Infinito was designed to cover very long distances with maximum performance and minimum fatigue. The entire C2C range represents Bianchi's foray into a category of recent frame design which arguably started with the Cervelo RS and includes the likes of Scott's latest CR1 and Cannondale's Synapse. These pro-quality framesets rethink traditional assumptions about what it means to be a quote-unquote racing bike by focusing on a less stressed rider position and a more relaxed geometry. This is done by extending the frame's head-tube height (just more than 1.5cm on the Infinito) and lengthening the wheelbase but maintaining traditional head tube angles and fork rake. Bianchi's goal of creating a comfort-oriented, pro-quality race machine was clearly achieved as evidenced by the Infinito's use throughout the 2009 Giro d'Italia by Robbie Hunter (one of the hardmen of the pro peloton and a sprinter extraordinaire), who spent the month testing and proving its race-worthiness in every road stage and every conceivable condition.The comfort factor of the Infinito is astonishing when one realizes that it still fits squarely within Bianchi's competition range of framesets. Certainly, its ride properties benefit from the strategic use of vibration damping Kevlar and an extended wheelbase which smooths out rough road surfaces. But Bianchi's Nano Power Technology -- identical to that used in the mother of all Bianchi race bikes, the 928 SL--allows them to tune the frame's ride and vibration absorption properties through unique tube shapes and the orientation of carbon fibers. In whole, Bianchi refers to this process as BAT (Bianchi Active Technology) which means the combination of materials and shapes maintain the frame's phenomenal torsional stiffness for full-blown power transfer and Grand Tour style handling characteristics, but at the same time allows for enou
Strengths: Smooth ride. Predictable handling. Sharp looks.
Weaknesses: White tires
I picked up a NOS 2011 Infinito for a very good price at a local bike shop. This was a serious upgrade from my budget aluminum Trek. The carbon frames absorbs a lot of road chatter. You still feel bumps but they are dampened considerably. The increased stiffness really makes the bike accelerate well. The light weight took a little getting used to. At first a quick turn at speed had a icy road type feel. This is my first carbon bike, friends have told that it is a normal feeling. The stock Fizik saddle was surprisingly comfortable. It has a very narrow nose. I am a large rider with thick thighs and constantly battle chafing. Not with this saddle though.The saddle had a slight concave to it that suited me. The Shimano 105 drivetrain is very smooth shifting. The crankset is a 50/ 34 FSA Gossamer. Very sharp looking in black with shiny aluminum machining. My only real complaint is the white Vittorii tires. The looked dirty after the first ride. I am partial to Gatorskins anyway so these will be replaced. The contour bars are comfortable. I am very happy with this bike and look forward to many miles on it.
Strengths: Fast, Comfortable, Stylish, Well-equiped Value
Weaknesses: I was not fond of the tires that came on it. Three flats in 2 weeks, but now using Michelin Pro3 and have not had a problem since. Otherwise no weaknesses.
Fast, comfortable ride on stylish machine. Handles without fail on rough cobbles and street potholes. Climbs with gusto. I have been riding this for about 2500 miles now, and have only been passed on the trails once--by another Infinito (with aero wheels). I bought the Ultegra version, and have found it to be essentially flawless. As an older cyclist who had gotten out of shape, I have shed the pounds and can't wait to ride this bike every day. Sadly, my steel bike just waits in the garage and never gets chosen. My rides are usually 30-50 miles in length and frequently with strong head winds, and just a few hills.
Date Reviewed: September 23, 2012
Strengths: Having tried many other brands over a period of some three months all around the £2000 mark this one immediately stood out. Straight out of the box, and after getting the fine adjustments right, it felt just right. Five miles up the road and I was hooked. Back to the store and a deal was done. After kiting it out with the usual extras I took my first serious trip hoping that my initial impressions hadn't been a dream. Ten miles out and it was doing exactly what I expected. No surprises into and out of corners, gear changes precise and a superb riding position. It felt as if it was running away almost without effort.
Over time I guess that I will be upgrading, particularly the wheelsets, but for now the Fulcrums will do for the winter.
Weaknesses: None apparent so far.
All in all this is by far the best bike I have had, and the most expensive by a fair margin, although my last one was bought ten years back. At my age (66) it will probably be the last, but what a way to go.
Date Reviewed: May 26, 2012
Strengths: Light well built and designed frame, I built my bike with Super Record 14.9 lbs! Great price for an awesome handling bike that is super comfortable and that does not sacrifice handling with its more relaxed design.
Highly recommended for someone that wants a performance bike that doesn't beat you up. Higher end components really make this bike shine.