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Value for money bicycles, with no compromise on performance delivered, is this brand’s mantra. Btwin emphasizes on innovation and design. Their new line of 2017 bicycles are a perfect example of this. The recently launched range boasts of some exciting bicycles. We got to review the Ultra 700 and this is what blew my mind about it.
The Btwin Ultra 700 has been designed with Btwin’s Evo Vario concept. The frame is made using aluminium alloy which is perfect to achieve an excellent propulsion-to-comfort ratio. The variable thickness tubes reduce the overall weight significantly, and ensures supreme performance on all kinds of terrain – tested on cobblestones, rugged roads and smooth city roads. The performance on all terrains was impeccable. The integrated cabling, and positioning of the rear brake under the chain stays point to the fact that this bicycle has been designed to be aerodynamic.
This bicycle uses a Btwin Ultra Evo Vario carbon fork. The combination of a carbon and aluminium frame offers ideal collaboration between the frame and fork. The fork absorbs shock felt from riding on cobblestones, and/or bumpy, rough terrain efficiently.
Btwin has hit one out of the park with their designing of this year’s range of bicycles. The Ultra 700 AF is a great example of the same. Their design team has done their best to keep the colouring and branding clean and simple; this enhances the pleasant aesthetics of the bicycle and makes it look classy and sleek. This bicycle is sure to be a head turner while on the road.
The bicycle comes in a single-color option – a dark blue, light blur frame with simple white branding and pink bar tape. The combination may seem a bit odd, but I will say that it looks great!
The Btwin Ultra 700 AF comes equipped with a complete Shimano 105 drivetrain. The 22-speed bicycle is a mean machine when on the road, tackling climbs and flat roads with ease.
The compact chainset offers for crisp, seamless shifting which is pleasing when you are looking for that immediate push in power. The shifting was lag-free, it should be considering it is after all Shimano 105 enabled – which at this price point is quite spectacular. The 22-speed shifting is controlled by Shimano Shifters which require the slightest click to shift. Super smooth and comfortable. Kudos, Btwin.
The Btwin Ultra 700 AF comes equipped with Shimano 105 direct mount brakes. The brakes in the front are placed as close to the fork as possible and the rear brakes are placed under the chain stays – this is done to make the frame design as aerodynamic as possible. The braking was extremely powerful, and is great for fast-paced riders looking for powerful and reliable braking. The braking was as effective on both dry and wet terrain on the test ride. The only minus with the rear brake positioning is its affinity to accumulate dirt faster, owing to its position being much closer to the ground.
This bicycle comes equipped with a compact Btwin handlebar that is sized to the bicycle. The compact shape is now the most common in a peloton, enabling the rider to place their hands on the drop bar without being in an overly aggressive, strained riding position. I found the riding position extremely comfortable when I tested this bicycle out.
The Btwin Ultra 700 comes equipped with fast rolling, Sleek, Kenda tires mounted on a 28mm high wheel. The front wheel has been designed with 20 spokes and the rear wheel with 24. This is done to ensure stability, yet reduce the weight of the wheels.
The saddle on this bicycle is the Btwin Comp Chromo Ergonomic Saddle. I found the saddle to be quite comfortable and plush. The major plus point here is that while the saddle is slightly hard, it’s ergonomic design makes it comfortable on short and long rides alike. It does not have the squishiness of many “comfort-oriented” saddles, yet it is one of the most comfortable stock saddles on a bicycle.
If you are in the market for a versatile high-end road bicycle for intensive training, fast-paced cycling on varied terrains and gradients, and a bicycle that can handle long and short distance riding well; the Btwin Ultra 700 AF should be a front runner. The bicycle is designed for performance and endurance riding, and as a big bonus the frame is UCI certified and hence, can be used to compete in all kinds of races.