Mike Hawkins takes the Genesis Equilibrium Titanium road bike for a first ride, here's what he thinks so far...
With top-flight UK race team Madison flying the flag for Genesis, it might come as a surprise to see the brand making comfortable endurance road bikes.
Now in its seventh year, the Equilibrium range aims to deliver lightweight all-rounders with a hint of stability added to ensure they are relaxing to ride all day.
The frame price of £1,499 is good for a quality titanium frame but isn’t exactly cheap in the grand scheme of things, so we opted to keep down the cost with Shimano’s 10-speed 105 groupset. A little long in the tooth, it’s still very much up to the job.
The only change was to help accommodate mudguards, which meant fitting deep-drop R650 calipers. We also went with a few Pro goodies in the form of Vibe S bar, stem and seatpost.
Given the 31.8mm seatpost and 58cm frame, we expected some slight uncertainty. Would the Equilibrium manage to tread the line between comfort and stiffness?
“The titanium tubes are stiff enough not to flex too much but still give a smooth feel and absorb vibrations”
We needn’t have worried, as Genesis’s designers evidently know what they’re about — the double-butted tubes manage to encompass all the things we love about titanium frames, and without any limiting compromises.
They’re stiff enough not to yield or flex excessively when pedalling but still give a smooth feel to the ride that feels like it absorbs the worst of the road vibrations.
In corners, it’s not the most direct bike on the planet, but then that’s to be expected, since it’s designed to be a comfortable endurance machine. Instead, it rounds corners with finesse, great control and a reassuring attitude. Somehow, it manages to deliver without ever becoming too aggressively race-bike-like.
With inspiring handling in every situation, the Genesis is a well priced and timeless classic of a bike; with mudguards, it will happily whisk you around for a winter. Take the mudguards off and it’s a great companion for long rides, particularly sportives.
Genesis may not be the first name you think of when it comes to titanium frames but, given the price, ride and reputation, you should put the Equilibrium Ti at the top of your shopping list.