Road Bike, Cycling Forums banner
1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I am contemplating purchasing an REI brand Novara Squadra and i was wondering if anyone has any experience with one? For the money it seems to be a VERY good deal, especially taking into account the 20% off discount.

Full carbon fibre frame
Sram Rival Grupo
FSA stem, seatpost, wheels, etc.

I have not ridden it yet, as it needs to stop raining long enough! But, I do want to hear opinions!

Thanks!
 

·
So. Calif.
Joined
·
2,800 Posts
No experience with that model, but I've owned a Strada (aluminum frame/ CF fork / Shimano 105) for about a year, and have been pleased with it -- a pretty decent bike, especially with occasional 20% sales. The main change I've done is swapping the so-so OEM saddle for a Fizik Alliante.

re the Squadra model & SRAM gruppo -- some people like the SRAM shifting concept, others hate it. That would be a key decision factor.

I also noted the bike is offered only with compact 50-34t crankset. Is this going to work for you? Some of the other Mfr's semi-entry bikes are often offered with Std (53-39), Compact (50-34), and triple (50-39-30) options.

Personally, if the Squadra were at full MSRP I'd prefer a higher end Aluminum framed bike over a budget CF bike, eg a Canondale CAAD9 or similar. But 20% off makes it an interesting horse race.

REI sales people's knowledge of bike fitting can be rudimentary, so either know what your body needs and how to assess it (can be difficult if you're on the bike), or bring along an expereinced bike buddy to provide another assessment. REI are also not going to be set-up to swap stems for fine tuning the fit.

REI people are not on commission, so they are not going to pressure you ... plus their return/exchange policies are very liberal (you probably already knew that). At my local REI, the mechanics are pretty knowledgeable, but this will vary store-to-store ... I prefer doing my own work, anyway.

You didn't mention whether this is your 1st road bike or a replacement ... there is something to be said for buying an even less expensive 1st road bike, and buy a fancier model down the road, after you've developed a better sense of your likes/dislikes/wants/needs ... that was my strategy, and now I'm in the process of assembling a CF bike, where I get to choose all the bits & pieces to my liking.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
I have a 2008 Squadra, I have liked it a lot so far. I got rid of the seat wheels and crank though (Attached picture still has the old seat). I upgraded the crank to a 53/39 SRAM Force. I have a 54cm frame and have gotten the bike weight to 16.2 lbs total (Race setup) with a few small changes. I am currently in my first full year of racing and so far this bike hasn't let me down. I picked this bike because it was cheap at 20% off and figured it would be a solid entry level bike. Plus with upgrades, being less then $3000 total its hard to find another bike with the weight/performance. As far as REI's service, no comment. I already knew my fit dimensions and I do my own maintenance.
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top