The 2008 Prince Carbon is identical in every last detail to the 2009 edition. The paint schemes are different, but other than that detail, they are equals in every last way. Every way, that is, except price. By choosing a 2008 paint scheme you save $1,500. Just like '09, the '08 version is built from carbon fiber sourced strictly from Japanese textile giant Toray, a supplier to virtually every aerospace company worldwide. Pinarello raves how Toray's quality control and testing protocols are as intensive as you'll find anywhere in the composites industry. Pinarello chooses 50HM1K carbon for the Prince Carbon -- a high-modulus carbon that has a tensile strength of 50 tons per square cm (50HM), and an exterior weave of 1000 weaves per crossing (1K). This allows Pinarello to use substantially less material while still maintaining optimum strength and rigidity. Sprint in a 53x12 or launch an out-of-the-saddle attack on a climb and the last thing you'll feel will be frame flex. Higher quality carbon also allowed Pinarello to build their lightest-ever frameset: The unpainted weight of a Prince Carbon is sub-900g. And as you'd expect from such high-end carbon, the Prince Carbon has remarkable smoothness at high speed. Pinarello explains that in their development of the Prince Carbon they gained a new level of insight on how tension and compression forces affect a bike under power. A frame manufacturer has to exactly identify tension and compression zones in a frame in order to optimize the orientation of the carbon fibers. Beyond fiber orientation alone, Pinarello structurally ribs the walls (not unlike what you originally saw in the Paris Carbon) to further enhance performance and ride quality. Pinarello used extensive computer modeling to ensure that the ribbing properly follows areas of compression in the head tube, fork, seat stays, plus portions of the seat tube and the BB. Unlike any previous Pinarello, you'll feel stability, resistance to flex, and an absorption of road shock.The Prince Carbon is built with an Onda FPX fork. Unlike the standard Onda fork, Pinarello built a second "wave" into the "S" shape of the FPX. This redesigned shaping serves to further reduce vibrations and increase comfort on any road surface. In addition, the FPX is also completely built from 50HM1K carbon to reduce weight. The Prince Carbon also comes with a Pinarello integrated headset and a Pinarello carbon fiber seatpost. It requires the use of a 35.0mm front derailleur and an Italian BB.
Weaknesses: As usual, the price is high. However I believe Pinarello lowered the price for 2010 to $4000 due to the new Dogma FX coming out.
Best overall bike I've ever ridden to date. Excellent combination of stiffness and compliant ride qualities. There are smoother bikes and there are stiffer bikes, but the Prince does the best job of combining the two. No copycats, as nothing else looks like a Prince.
Beautiful design, and color combination nicely done. It handles good based on geometric design. Paint it self, chips easily with sweat at button bracket edge.
But they have a main safety issue. If you are riding about 30 miles per hour and if the rider in front goes down, when you hit him your frame will break in two pieces. Top and head tubes. At this point you will lose all front support due to a collapsing bike; for sure you will be facing the road in a second. Unfortunately for my I landed on my face. After looking at the broken frame, the carbon layer is so thin that make you wonder, if the extra ounces you save buy having a “lighter frame”, are worth it risking you life. This is not my first pinarello frame, but is the most dangers frame I ever had. It is not worth it to expend lots of money in a frame that could take you out of commission, due to pour safety quality.
Pinarello Prince is a 2008. I love this bike to death, but have one complaint. I have the matte black carbon with neon green highlights and the green has faded badly to almost a yellow green color. It is rather embarassing to have a $5000 frame and it fade and the company apparently only covers the paint job for one yr. I am still working on that. This is def. my fav. highend bike, but the paint fading is not acceptable. I purchased in April of '08 and noticed fading by May /June 2009 and it has def. worsened throughout the summer.