After almost a year after their official launch in India, Ridley have finally made their appearance at Track and Trail stores across the country. With about 4 models available right now Ridley brings with it great engineering and a deep rooted cycling history with it. We got the opportunity to test ride the Ridley Tempo X 2016 hybrid bicycle and here is what we thought.
Model: Tempo X
Price: INR 65,500
The Tempo X is a fast, reliable and aggressive hybrid with a lot of road bicycle characteristics with a steep price tag
The Tempo X uses a 7005-T6 Alloy frame as its body. 6061 and 7005 are the two most readily available aluminum alloys appropriate to making bicycle frames. The tensile strength of 7005-T6 is expected to be high which absorbs vibration and hence are commonly used on road and hybrid bicycles with no suspensions. Tensile strength measures the amount stress required to cause complete failure, while yield strength measures the amount required to deform the material. When to comes to frames, the greatest differences in strength will come from the quality of the welds, selection of tubing shapes and thicknesses, and the overall design of the frame. Ridley has perfected all of the above by giving an endurance focused frame with a slightly chunky too tube. The carbon Zornyc forks on the Tempo X curves slightly outward to give an aero push and also drastically reduces the weight of the frame on the front of the bicycle.
Ridley’s design has always been simple yet classy. The same pattern has been followed on the Tempo X. The bicycle which I test rode came in a full black primary colour with shades of white and red in a few places on the bicycle which does add a good contrast to the eyes. The matte finish paint on this bicycle is impressive and is of top quality, increasing the aesthetics of the Tempo X immensely. The straight handlebar on this bicycle is shaped in a way to give this bicycle an aggressive look and definitely a stand out when compared to other performance hybrids in the market.
The Ridely Tempo X is powered by some high performing Shimano groupsets. Shimano Alivio at the front and Shimano XT at the rear. Even though this bicycle can easily pass on for a flat barred road bicycle it does have MTB gearing components like many other performance hybrid bicycles in the market. This gearing worked perfectly well during the test ride with no complaints and isn’t a flaw. But, there wasn’t anything extraordinary which the derailleurs contributed to hitting top speeds or holding high cadence. The Shimano components aren’t at fault but it does not exactly suit the type of riding the Tempo X was built for. The Shimano Alivio Rapidfire plus 27 speed gear shifters were top notch and reacted at lightning speeds with very minimal noise while shifting.
Tempo X uses Shimano Alivio V brakes for the stopping power. These brakes are surprisingly well sorted, versatile and very functional. The simple one piece brake shoes with integrated pads are great. These brakes better suit this class of hybrid bicycles because they are more forgiving and just offer a lot of stopping power when the brake levers are squeezed. Personally I like that the pad mounting posts are in the center of the pads. This effectively means that a 'front' or a 'rear' version of this brake is really the same item. The level of refinement in these brakes is well above their price bracket. Shimano's jam proof pivot design is better than what you get on other low priced brakes, same goes for their spring tension adjusting screws which are neat setscrews over a coil spring, threaded into steel. The brake arms are 107mm pivot to pivot, which is good since shorter brake arms have a little less power, & long arms are usually only to help clear mudguards/fenders but they also reduce pad clearance. The brake levers were in perfect hand position and also reacted well to sudden and interval braking. Even though there are only positives about these brakes, it is absolutely fair to only expect disc brakes on a bicycle priced this high. Negative points for value for money.
The Continental Cyclocross Speed 700x35C keeps the Tempo X rolling. Continental describes the Cyclocross Speed as “the top choice for a pure cross tire thanks to a diamond-coated center section and coarse stubs in the shoulder lugs.” This folding bead tire is rated at 350grams with a recommended pressure range of 58-85 psi. This tire has a uniform tread of relatively large tread blocks in the center that make for a smooth ride on paved and gravel surfaces, with more aggressive tread near the rounded edge of the tire, that dig into mud and soft soils for better traction. The 4ZA Stratos saddle on the Tempo X is of professional grade. With an overall ergonomic design and grip patches on the widest parts, this saddle is sure to keep you comfortable on longer rides. The overall ride quality was fast but quite rigid.
- High quality frame and neat welds
- Swift and smooth gear shifting
- Fast rolling tires with large treads
- Price is on the higher side
The Tempo X is built to perfection and rides fast. Be it for commutes or long weekend rides on flat tarmacs, this bicycle will get you there fast. This might not be the most comfortable ride, mainly due to the aggressive ride position. Even though this bicycle is classified as a hybrid by Ridley it can easily pass off as a flat barred road bicycle. Even though loosing on comfort, it does make up for speed. But apart from all this, the price tag is something which is a negative aspect. The Tempo X is definitely priced higher in its class. If you like flat tarmac riding but not a fan of conventional road bicycles then the Ridley Tempo X is a good choice to consider.