Specialized Tarmac Expert Road Bike

Specialized Tarmac Expert Road Bike 

DESCRIPTION

  • Specialized FACT 6r carbon frame with compact race geometry and Zertz seatstay inserts
  • Lightweight full FACT carbon fork with vibration damping Speed Zertz
  • Specialized Pro lightweight handlebar and Specialized Pro-Set stem
  • Smoother shifting, lighter weight Shimano Ultegra 20-speed drivetrain
  • Lighter Mavic Ksyrium Equipe wheelset
  • Light weight yet resilient 120TPI Mondo Pro tyres

  • USER REVIEWS

    Showing 1-10 of 41  
    [May 31, 2012]
    Tom

    Strength:

    Just picked up a cherry '06 Golsteiner just like the picture on this thread. Totally stock. New condition. Been riding a '10 Allez Elite. Love the Tarmac. I live in hill country and this bike surges up hill. Very smooth ride over chip seal. I find myself riding harder and subsequently faster. Its a keeper.

    Weakness:

    Don't like the saddle.....

    Looked for one for a while, found it, keeping it......

    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    [May 30, 2012]
    Keith Easo

    Strength:

    Very good and respon
    Very good bike for the price!sive bike.
    I upgraded the wheels, tires, and saddle.
    Very good bike for the cost!

    Weakness:

    Stock Mavic wheelset a little heay.

    After the upgrades a very quick and responsive bike.

    OVERALL
    RATING
    4
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    [Oct 01, 2011]
    Eddie G
    Road Racer

    Strength:

    Climbing

    Weakness:

    None

    Can't find a better overall bike for climbing and the flats. Precise shifting and limited flex.

    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    [Mar 07, 2011]
    Jay
    Road Racer

    Strength:

    Nice paint
    Very Stiff and light
    Quiet frame and the seat post helps(a bit) kill bumps.

    Weakness:

    Wheels are a bit heavy but very strong.

    I love the bike. I was concerned about the stiff frame just leaving behind a Roubaix but I have had no problems with it yet. Its fast up hills, good over pavement and not too bad on the back. All in all it's a quiet bike that likes to go fast. The toupe seat might have to get replaced with the wheels but other than that...It's a long keeper.

    Similar Products Used:

    Allez(2), Roubaix and Bianchi.

    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    4
    [Sep 20, 2010]
    JT
    Recreational Rider

    Strength:

    Stiffness, COmfort

    Weakness:

    Wheels

    2010 Tarmac Expert Sl. Put 150 miles on it over the weekend to much delight. It was smooth, comfortable and compliant. Power transfer is good and it goes exactly where you want it too go. Pu the hammer down and hold on.

    Similar Products Used:

    Trek 1.5, Felt B-16 Tri

    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    [May 26, 2010]
    GBeck
    Recreational Rider

    Strength:

    Well made,good components given the price point, Large dealer network for servicing.

    Weakness:

    The stock saddle was very uncomfortable.

    The bike is a 2008, but I think my review would apply to newer models as well. The bike is terrific. Fast, light, responsive, and comfortable on the road. The Fulcrum 5, 2:1 wheelset has been trouble free. Same with the component set. A great value for the money.

    Similar Products Used:

    Prior bike was a 1985 cro-moly steel Cilo with a traditional geometry & Shimano 105 components. This bike was similar to the Dave Scott Centurion, a popular bike at the time.

    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    [Apr 04, 2010]
    colinmichael
    Road Racer

    Strength:

    Speed, handling, Ultegra

    Weakness:

    Wheels

    This is actually the 2010 Expert SL with 10k carbon.
    I race mountain bikes but train a bit on the road so I had always ridden a Ti or steel road bike in the past as I wanted something really comfortable and wasn't so concerned with having a more race oriented bike. I moved close to some great group rides so I wanted to switch over to something more appropriate and the Tarmac fits that perfectly.

    I tested the Roubix but it just didn't have the acceleration or climbing speed I was looking for. On the Tarmac, accelerations really jump and the bike instantly transfers power to speed. The Roubix and my old Ti bike were super comfortable and had more relaxed geometry, but the pure speed of the Tarmac won me over. Riding the Tarmac back to back with the Roubix really showed how well the Roubix absorbs vibration and made the Tarmac feel rough. But after several long rides on fairly rough roads I can honestly say that for such a stiff bike, the Tarmac has very good vibration dampening.

    Parts are pretty good with all Ultegra but the wheels are lame (some cheap Mavic wheels that weighed almost 2k grams, as much as my all-mountain wheels!). Stock weight of a 58cm was 17.25 lbs without pedals. Switching to some ksyrium SL SSC's saved almost a pound, taking the bike to 16.42 lbs on the shop scale. I suppose a Dura Ace cassette and carbon bars could get me pretty close to the 15lb range but I'm not that concerned.

    Handling is racy but confident. It's not as nerve racking as some race bikes but it certainly favors aggressive riders who pay attention to what they are doing. My first big downhill really amazed me at how much quicker I could take corners verse my old bike. I find that it handles better at it's limits than when you are just cruising. Accelerations are instant which really helps on the climbs. It's barely lighter than my old bike but climbs much better with it's short-ish stays and laterally stiff frame.
    Overall, I like this bike much more than I thought I would and am very happy with the ride. I tend to keep my road bikes for several years so hopefully it will prove to be durable.

    5 Stars for value: $3k really seems to be the "sweet spot" for road bikes

    4 Stars overall: the wheels are no good so you are just about required to put something else on to really feel what this bike is capable of.

    OVERALL
    RATING
    4
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    [Mar 29, 2010]
    kayelen
    Recreational Rider

    Strength:

    Climbing ascents - when I get into position I can feel the power transfer from my body to bike. Makes me want to do hill intervals mid-week so I can kick some weekend warrior butt!
    It is a good looking bike. I feel motivated to clean it after I ride.
    Brakes are sensitive in a good way

    Weakness:

    Expensive

    My bike is a 2010 Tarmac Expert. I bought it after ~2 months of test riding different bikes. At the end it was between the Roubaix and the Tarmac for me. I tested the Tarmac on a 30 miler and I enjoyed riding on it. However I read all the Roubaix vs Tarmac reviews and I almost bought a Roubaix based on reviews.

    In the end I bit the bullet and went with the bike I love - the Tarmac. I've done a few shorter rides and yesterday did my first 40+ miler. I'm happy to report all my joints feel fine, my butt feels fine and I'd be happy to go out riding again today (if I had the time).

    Word of advice for anyone who is stuck choosing between 2 bikes. Go with your gut and the bike you love!

    Similar Products Used:

    Tested:
    Madonne 5.2
    Roubaix Expert
    Cannondale supersix

    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    4
    [Jan 17, 2010]
    pepcidcomplete
    Road Racer

    Strength:

    Fast everywhere you can take it: flats, hills, downs. Beautiful paint job. Comfortable, as racing bikes go. Keeps you warm on cold days (wut??).

    Weakness:

    Those darn Fulcrum wheels. Don't pay more than $2500 for it--they're only $1800 wholesale.

    It's actually a 2008, but I couldn't select that.

    I've had my '08 Tarmac Expert (Rival) for over a year now and have put 4000 miles on it. It's a fantastic bike--super smooth, sensitive handling, climbs like...something that climbs well...both in and out of the saddle.

    Beware the Fulcrum Racing 5 Evo wheels. Though they ride reasonably well, I popped 3 spokes in the year I used them (with regular true-ing). I haven't heard of anyone else having that problem. Replaced them recently with Easton EA70s.

    SRAM Rival is awesome, and it's awesome on this bike.

    This is the perfect bike for the addicted rec cyclist/casual racer (such as myself). It's too responsive for inexperienced road riders (not to mention it's not worth the price for them). All in all, a really dependable bike. Just don't crash it. And keep it clean!

    One final thing: get the Expert over the Elite.

    I will miss it, probably more than my girlfriend, when I'm in Japan next year.

    Similar Products Used:

    '08 Tarmac Elite
    '08 Tarmac Pro
    Test-rode Madones, Giant TCRs

    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    [Aug 01, 2009]
    jamesbrowm
    Recreational Rider

    Strength:

    The 09 model is at least a thousand dollars more with downgraded componetry.
    The lone Dura-Ace rear derailleur is an added bonus.

    Weakness:

    tires flat way too easily
    uncomfortable saddle
    wheels could be bettor
    unsettling going downhill fast or in a crosswind

    Finally bought into the carbon mythology.
    Looked at the Wilier Izoard, Colnago
    CLX, Stevens Impala-settled on the Specialized Tarmac Expert. The ride is subtle with minumum feedback to the rider. It rewards you for going fast and punishes you for going slow. I haven't noticed the loose seatpost clamp or the flex in the frame other reviewers have commented on.I have noticed the fast-handling. It seems unsettling going downhill or in a crosswind. The money saved purchasing an 08 model could be used towards upgrading the wheels.

    Similar Products Used:

    Wilier Le Roi
    Trek Pilot

    OVERALL
    RATING
    4
    VALUE
    RATING
    3
    Showing 1-10 of 41  

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