FIRST RIDE: PLANET X STEALTH

Planet X Stealth

You may well recognise this bike from the Grand Tours this summer. Cadel Evans rode this frame design, decked out in Ridley stickers, during the time trial stages in the Tour de France.

It comes from a mould in a carbon factory in China. Planet X developed the frame design but because it didn?t buy the mould itself, other manufacturers can also jump in, hence its appearance at the Tour.

With a striking appearance and aggressive tubing shapes, which all are triangulated, the Stealth is certainly solid under power thanks to the large junction designed around the bottom bracket and chainstays.

A miniscule head tube allows anyone with the skills of a contortionist to get as low as they like, which is a nice option.

With a solid rear the front end also offers a good performance but is not as positive as the latest Pinarello and Specialized TT frames. But then a built-up Stealth bike costs as much as

the above two frames alone.

The horizontal lines along the top tube and profiled stays aim to give the Stealth aero qualities of the bigger players without an exclusive price tag. On the downside we found that the handlebar extensions weren?t that sturdy. With an option to upgrade to deeper section wheels our 101 rear and 82 front wheels did the job. Considering their price, these tubular carbon wheels do an excellent job.

When you combine a solid performance with Shimano Dura-Ace, it?s hard to fault the Stealth.

PLANET X STEALTH

Distributor Planet X, www.planet-x-bikes.com

Price£2,199

FrameStealth Fuselage XL

ForkStealth

Size rangeS, M, L, XL

Weight18.5lb (8.4kg)

GroupsetShimano Dura-Ace

DeviationsTektro R75 Carbon

AlterationsUSE Tula bars

Gear ratios53/39 with 11-21

WheelsPlanet X Pro 101 rear, Planet X Pro 82 front

TyresContinental Sprinter

Tubular 22

BarsPlanet X Stealth Aero

StemPlanet X Superlite Road

SeatpostPlanet X Stealth

SaddlePlanet X SL Team Ti rails

Size testedM

CW FIRST IMPRESSION 8/10

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