Raleigh bring their 125 years of bike building experience to the cyclocross market with this mid-range offering
Raleigh has been building bikes for 125 years, so it has learnt a thing or two about what works and what doesn’t. The Raleigh RX Pro cyclocross bike is one of a handful of cyclo-cross bikes that the firm has placed right in the middle of the range, offering CX fans great quality at a reasonable price. This model stands out from the crowd with an eye-catching paint job, and we didn’t tire of the compliments it received from fellow riders.
The alloy frame is not the lightest you can find on the market for the same price but it’s definitely not heavy, at a shade under 10kg for a large-sized model. The frameset comes with a full carbon fork, ready to take the impact of most terrain. The fork comes with a thru-axle, which adds to the stiffness, but creates a problem if you’re looking for fast front wheel changes, for instance during races, as it’s not the quickest system we’ve used.
Despite having definite racing potential, the Raleigh was really built as a ‘do-it-all’ machine. Eyelets allow the fitment of mudguards, making it a perfect commuter.
A slight problem we found while riding was how close the cables run along the top tube of the bike, causing slight rub. The cables do have rubber protectors but they didn’t fully protect the paintwork, and we’d worry about that matt finish degrading.
This Raleigh comes with a SRAM Rival 22 groupset, SRAM’s newest road system, sitting under SRAM Force and above Apex in the range. The levers gave a very responsive gear change, while the gearing, with its cross-specific 46/36 chainset and 28t bottom sprocket, is quite high, giving a more competitive feel. This is great for racing, but when the RX Pro is ridden over longer distances, we’d have liked a few extra gears to climb the bigger hills.
A real treat on this model is the hydraulic disc braking system. It’s very sensitive and very reliable, giving you full confidence whether slowing down for a sharp corner or for an emergency stop. No matter the conditions, you’ll need to apply little force to the levers for a good result.
The RX Pro is a mid-range bike able to accomplish a lot, for a reasonable price, giving the rider the comfort and speed needed. It’s a stiff, solid but still light enough bike, with a distinctive paintjob — which all add up to a winning combination from Raleigh. It might not be the perfect ‘first time’ or beginners’ cyclo-cross bike because of the gearing and riding position, but it is certainly suitable for a wide range of riders looking for a versatile and exciting bike.
Available from: www.raleigh.co.uk
The Raleigh RX Pro cyclocross bike is a do-it-all machine that would make a good commuter. It looks great and performs well on and off the road