The Cannondale bicycle line is very well known among the cycling community. As a company they offer elite road bikes down to very cost effective entry-level road bikes. A new or used road bike can be found for a great price and many bikes are featured over at Road Bike USA. In this article, we will look at the Cannondale SystemSix. . . A very popular choice among the Cannondale model line due to the lightweight but extremely efficient ride. The SystemSix is a great choice for riders of any ability and is sure to satisfy your fit. Let's dissect the bicycle a little further. . .
Key features of the bike:
- For loyal cyclists who want to get the highest quality road bike it is good to know where your bike was made. Were 15 parts mixed together from God knows where? Not with this road bike. . . Handmade in Bedford Pennsylvania, you know where your bike was built.
- 8 different frame sizes - 48, 50, 52, 54, 56, 58, 60 & 63cm
- Many brands over much less while some may offer a 5th or 6th size, but Cannondale goes further to give riders a road bicycle with 8 different size choices, ensuring greater comfort for any person's height.
- 6 stem sizes - 80, 90, 100, 110, 120 & 130mm
- SystemSix carbon stem gives a great amount of stiffness, a desired quality among experienced riders, complementing the front end of the bike. As stated above, stiffness has been studied and optimized on the SystemSix with the front end, top tube and down tube all optimized for lateral and torsional stiffness.
- A lightweight bicycle is also popular among roadies and triathletes and Cannondale addresses this in many ways. For example, the larger carbon head tube eliminates unnecessary welding further reducing additional material for bicycle construction. In addition to this, an oversized down tube gives a thinner wall reducing weight. Sometimes with reduced weight, companies fail in the stiffness category, but Cannondale addressed both nicely.
- A look at the seat tube shows improvements in weight with an aluminum seat tube lighter than the Six13 while using a stiffer carbon seatpost.
Taking all of this into account we get a frame weight of about 2.45 pounds, using a standard mid-size model with paint.
Nice additional features
Wheels are lighter than those of many competitors and those used in the Cannondale road bike are the Mavic Ksyrium ES weighing in at just over 3.2 pounds a set. Titanium skewers and axles accompany this and add additional flash to the ride.
Our takeaways from riding the SystemSix. . .
Stability and responsiveness is seen when riding, especially during descents or sharp turns when compared to Felt and Trek bikes. I seemed to be going much faster and felt safer than a comparable Trek. The wheels are excellent and a definite upgrade, a nice touch for an out of box wheelset.
Aesthetics are personal preference but my view is that the larger tubes not only perform well but also look unique and different. I like to get looks and performance in the same package. What I read going into the ride was to monitor the saddle during the ride as this is sometimes an issue. The Fizik saddle works for some but is uncomfortable for others. I personally ride a different saddle and found the provided one uncomfortable after hours in the saddle. However, some people love them so this is something to try yourself if wanting to switch the Fizik.
For the price of $3500 for the SystemSix 3 it compares to bikes much more expensive and at its weight of 16.5 pounds for the 56cm (cannondale.com) it is a great choice. Buying a used road bike can shave off a $1,000 or more off the retail price while giving you a like new bicycle. Check out online superstores, such as Road Bike USA (roadbikeusa.com) and see if your ride is there.