It is unusual that a company has an unlimited amount of time to design a frame, but that is just what Specialized?s designers had with the Transition. Taking three years to develop, the result is one that few could argue with.
Features are aplenty with the Transition, including full internal cabling entering the frame just behind the head tube with the unusual routing for an SRM unit.
Narrowness is the key with any time trial bike and the Transition hits the wind with a short, narrow 1in steerer tube.
A structural gusset aids airflow down the down tube, entering through the fork, which has an aluminium crown that is horizontal to the ground to smooth airflow. Out of the wind, the chainstays remain in line with the bottom bracket, only flaring out at the dropout to accept the wheel and cassette.
The large flat surfaces of the frame have been profiled to the maximum allowable by the UCI technical regulations.
Possibly the most striking initial impression is the positive and accurate front end. The rider can stay on the extensions without any unnerving sensations being translated through the front end, while it tracks through corners like a thoroughbred road race frame. This can also be partly attributed to a stiff top tube.
Ultimately, after aerodynamics ? something this frame clearly processes ? and before weight, stiffness is key. This, the Transition also nails, with the compact rear end providing little movement and a solid feeling. Stiffness, however, does not translate into a harsh ride but one that achieves a good compromise between feel and comfort.
SPECIALIZED S-Works Transition
DistributorSpecialized UK 020 8391 3500
ForkFACT 9R N?Aero
Gear ratios53/39 with 11-26
BarsZipp Vuka Aero
CW FIRST IMPRESSION 10/10
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Founded in 1891, Cycling Weekly and its team of expert journalists brings cyclists in-depth reviews, extensive coverage of both professional and domestic racing, as well as fitness advice and 'brew a cuppa and put your feet up' features. Cycling Weekly serves its audience across a range of platforms, from good old-fashioned print to online journalism, and video.
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