De Rosa Neo Primato review

De Rosa Neo Primato 2010
Cycling Weekly Verdict

As long as you're not aiming to break the Alpe d'Huez record, the De Rosa Neo Primato will be fine for all of most people's cycling needs. It's not the lightest and it's not the stiffest but if that's what you're after you won't be remotely interested in this bike. What it is, however, is one of the most stylish bikes around at the moment, one that will make you stand out from the crowd, and who knows, it might even make you feel like Eddy Merckx, and isn't that what we're all aiming at?! Unfortunately, we had one nitpick with our test frame - the seatpost slipped and we were a little disappointed about that because it's a De Rosa-branded 27.2mm seatpost, so in theory everything should be exactly right. Eddy Merckx was famously fanatical about his saddle height, and he wouldn't have been impressed, but a different clamp bolt was the simple and straight- forward solution and something a good shop would surely catch before you even bought the bike.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Classic looks

  • +

    Clean lines

  • +

    Steel frame and fork for the purists

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Slipping seatpost

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Who does he think he is, Eddy Merckx? That's the kind of comment you're likely to attract if you're riding this bike, because the orange livery - even though the frame decals don't say so - is unmistakably Molteni, the team that the great Belgian captained during his all-conquering heyday.

Italian Ugo De Rosa built bikes for Big Ted for most of his career, and when Merckx retired and went into frame-building, it was De Rosa who showed him around the jig and brazing torch.

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