Strengths: Strong, excellent geometry, cool graphics, I would have put the water bottle bosses a bit higher, like 1/2 inch forward
Weaknesses: Well it is expensive,, I would have put the water bottle bosses a bit higher, like 1/2 inch forward
What's not to like!
I tried out a few different bikes concurrent with this one, a Focus and a Litespeed. All have their merit, but this bike had better feedback with the road, it literally sings. I had been riding a Litespeed titanium for a few years before this one, so it is a bit a a feel change. When I got home I took it out for what was to be a quick ride, 15-20 miles to get the feel and do some fine tuning. I snapped out of my reverie at 35 miles later and had to cut it short due to thunderstorms or I would have ridden all day.
I don't know if this bike generates some kind of un-reality field, but my rides have all averaged 3-4 mph higher average on the road and 5-6 mph faster on the rollers as measured by my Garmin Edge 800 and tracked in Garmin Training Center. So I am very impressed with the bike. I have an old Colnago Mexico with C-Record, I always liked its geometry the best of any bike, so when I wanted to upgrade, I really felt Colnago would keep the feel of the older frames in its new bikes. I am not disappointed. On the downside with a carbon bike vs a Titanium bike. A Ti bike does not have to babied, scratches just buff out with WD40 and a ScotchBrite pad. If I scratch this one; arghhhhh! So now I have to find some kind of bag to put it in when I transport it in the car (heaven forbid I put it on the roof).
I had never rode SRAM Red before, being mostly a Shimano Dura Ace or Campy C-Record before that. I am thoroughly impressedwith the transmission and brakes. It was a quick and intuitive change in shifting method. The brake levers are comfortable on the hoods and have better positioning in the drops. Speaking of drops, this is the first bike I have felt good in the drops in a while. Being older, 56, feel and comfort are important. I go for distance and consistent speed. I can't have a bike beat me to death by transmitting every grain of sand's micro bumps directly to my old joints. I also live in the mountains in FLagstaff, Arizona at 7,000'. So a bike that can take long climbs out of the saddle without flexing, is important. It also has good stability during high speed descents.
I feel this bike is good value for the dollar spent. The SRAM Red is great. Campy Super Record would have added snob appeal, but not improved the riding experience one iota.
Bike Setup: Full SRAM Red with compact crank 11-26 cluster. I have a full size crank for the flats with an 11-25. I live up in the mountains, so I need to climb, but want speed when I go down to sea level.
Tires: Vittorio Rubino Pro
Handlebar: Colnago HB 02
Stem: 3T ARX TEAM
Saddle: Colnago Prologo Z3
Seatpost: Colnago Carbon
Strengths: stiff, strong (takes a hit without breaking into fairy dust), stable and predictable handling. By far the best handling race bike I've used. Perfect for a big guy who races a lot of crits and short road races
Weaknesses: short TT, is there anywhere else you can out a Colnago logo?...seriously overdecaled.
Bottom line with most CF bikes is that they are built in more or less te same factory in the far east. So the construction and quality is more or less standardized. The big question is why pay more for a Colnago when it's being made in the far east. At least based on the specs and press releases the CX-1 was meant to jump into the monocoque fray and take advantage of it's inherent qualities. The bike is clearly designed with a difference between the tube shapes, the BB shell, fork. It also has some inherent Colnago characteristics, such as a shorter TT. Personally I think they combined these worlds well and delivered a bike that very much performs on a pro-tour level, but is also priced more reasonibly. The thing I actually love the most about this bike is that it is overbuilt. If you're going to actually race a Colnago, it's good to know it can take a punch.
Bottom line for me, is that this is a race bike. More specifically it kicks a$$ in a crit. It's stiff, stable, predictable. Certainly will hold it's own on other races...but I'm best at crits and its where I push bikes the hardest. It holds a line well, especially when you're sprinting through corners.
If you're getting a bike for long training rides, group rides etc... I don't think it's the right bike. It's stiff and on chip and seal can get annoying, especially with the wrong wheels.
Likewise if you go for a big handle bar drop, it's going to be a problem in the smaller sizes. Some didn't like the stability, felt it wasn't reactive enopugh.
Fit wise, I like to be pretty stretched out. I loved the fit of Eddy Merckx. But it still works.
The Sloping Fit- awesome person of avg height - 5'9"
Is absorbs the road quite well with Vitorria Tires
Light considering the strength of frame
Power transfer is awesome makes hills easier
Weaknesses: I've heard of paint chips / cracks, but don't have any in 2 years and thousands of miles.
I don't like that the cables scratch the clear coat though wish they'd run them inside.
Well, I've owned my CX-1 two years now and figure it's time I wrote my first review. I have to say I was impressed from the first time I ever rode a Colnago and ordered a CLX then decided to go for the CX-1 since it was released a couple days after my order.
The decision to upgrade has never bothered me and the machine is just a joy to ride. Whether out for a weekend fun ride or challenging myself to lower my times around the daily 40 mile ride; it's always a pleasure.
If you get the chance and the money isn't an issue, I'd highly suggest this awesome machine.
I would highly recommend this bike to anyone as long as their budget was right and they are seriously wanting to buy a machine that will make them want to ride more.
Similar Products Used: This was my first high end bike. I rode an aluminum Trek for years.
Bike Setup: SRAM Red
Keo Look Pedals
a Recreational Rider
Date Reviewed: August 3, 2010
Strengths: Power transfer, stiffness, stability, looks, build quality,
Weaknesses: Maybe price but it's Italian. Front end seem to be a fraction harsh on rough roads but that's stiffness for you. Weight of frame and fork but that what you get for a solid built machine.
2009 model Colnago CX-1 $7500.00AUD. Very impressed with the bicycle though I haven't ridden any high end bikes before. Main areas of the bike that really satisfied me are the power transfer, excellent. The stiffness which allows you to feel the responsiveness of the bike but not uncomfortable. The ability to change direction quickly, agile to avoid obstacles and extremely stable through all stages of the ride. Obviously the appearance, discreetly exposed carbon and the finish quality of the frame are exceptional, nice thick accurate paint. The geometry seems really good with a short chain stay that’s supposed to be good for climbing? Plenty of sizes to choose from, my shoes don’t touch the front wheel when doing a track stance at the lights and the rear wheel doesn’t come off the ground when climbing hard out of the saddle. This bike really feels like it needs to be ridden hard and is really rewarding when you do so. Very much an aggressive rider’s bike and really a bike for racing. Does transmit some of the rough road vibration through the front forks and kicks you in the saddle a little over bumps, but that's stiffness for you, (compared to something like the Cannondale super six hi mod which dampens some of this a fraction) but I actually preferred this ride as opposed to the “rear flat tyre” sensation you get from the Cannondale. May not be the lightest bicycle, 7.3kg (Campag 11 Chorus, Fulcrum Racing 1) but feels solid and safe.
Strengths: Movie Star good looks, laser handling under pressure, sprinting and climbing stiffness, race bred hertiage.
Weaknesses: Weight, White Paint scheme requires a lot cleaning focus. Twitchy front end on the hoods over rough pavement/chipseal.
This is my third Colnago and I'm definitely a fan. The 2009 CX-1 is hands down a racing bike holding true to the Colnago heritage. The stiffness of the bike is well known and totally on pure race form while the rear triangle is advanced enough to still offer all day comfort beyond 60+ miles. The front end seems a little twitchy/flexy at times over rough pavement/chipseal when on the hoods but does offer excellent control when fully engaging diving turns or decending. I still don't think carbon steers tubes are as good as aluminum or steel for all-out-control. The frame and fork is not lightest in its price point but I'm willing to have some trade offs for stiffness and longevity. Out of the saddle sprinting in the drops is a joy and the bike is laser focused awaiting any input command.