Cannondale Synapse Disc Tiagra

As part of our winter bike special, we take a closer look at the Cannondale Synapse Tiagra

Cannondale Synapse Tiagra winter road bike
Cannondale Synapse Tiagra winter road bike

Promotional feature with Cannondale

The original Synapse in 2006 was one of the first bikes aimed at sportive riding and both the carbon and aluminium models have a reputation for balancing comfort, light weight and efficiency — and they’ve always had good looks on their side too.

As a pioneer of lightweight, oversized aluminium tubing, Cannondale knows how to get the best from this material.

The 2018 Synapse incorporates technology originally used in its CAAD race frames such as SmartForm, where tubing wall thickness can be manipulated very precisely in order to keep the frame as light as possible while remaining stiff.

SAVE stands for Synapse Active Vibration Elimination and is Cannondale’s way of engineering compliance into key areas.

The Synapse frame is fully winter ready with mudguard eyes and rack mounts. It will accommodate 32mm tyres and comes with 28s.

The fork is carbon bladed with a tapered steerer. For more consistent handling across the sizes — and to avoid toe overlap in the smaller ones — the fork has a rake of 60mm for the two smallest sizes and 50mm for the rest.

All Synapse forks — and therefore all Synapse bikes — are disc specific: Cannondale’s belief in discs is such that the Synapse is not available as a rim-brake bike any more.

At the competitive £1K price point, it’s always going to be mechanical rather than hydraulic disc brakes; the Synapse in this spec uses a twin-piston Promax caliper to avoid rotor rub, operated by the Tiagra shifters.

Also featuring in the Tiagra-specced model is an FSA Omega compact crankset driving a 11-34t 10-speed cassette, meaning there’s a 1:1 ratio to bail you out on the steepest bits.

The finishing kit is Cannondale’s own-brand C4 equipment and the saddle is an own-branded Stage Ergo.

Price: £999


Frame: Synapse Disc SmartForm alloy

Fork: Synapse Disc SAVE

Size range: 48-61cm

Weight: 10.56kg

Groupset: Shimano Tiagra

Gear ratios: 50/34, 11-34t

Wheels: Maddux RD3.0 rims on Formula disc hubs

Tyres: Vittoria Zaffiro

Brakes: Promax mechanical discs

Bar: Cannondale C4

Stem: Cannondale C4

Seatpost: Cannondale C4

Saddle: Cannondale Stage Ergo

Thank you for reading 20 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Paul Norman

Paul started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2015, covering cycling tech, new bikes and product testing. Since then, he’s reviewed hundreds of bikes and thousands of other pieces of cycling equipment for the magazine and the Cycling Weekly website.

He’s been cycling for a lot longer than that though and his travels by bike have taken him all around Europe and to California. He’s been riding gravel since before gravel bikes existed too, riding a cyclocross bike through the Chilterns and along the South Downs.