When you talk about the Performance Bicycle segment in India, there are only a few brands that come to mind and one of the leading ones in that is Firefox. It has maintained its position as one of the most aspirational Bicycles brands. We got the opportunity to test ride the Firefox Pirate 3.0 Gravel Bicycle and here is what we thought.
Category: Fitness/Commuting/Flat Tracks
The Firefox Pirate 3.0 is built on a full Alloy frame. Whilst there is a notion that Gravel Bicycles, which are also meant to be ridden on rough surfaces have heavier frames, this is not the case with this frame as the 6061 Hydro formed system has helped shape the tubes in a way to use material only where it is needed the most. Acceleration was top notch and the riding position was comfortable. The frame was well supported by lightweight rigid alloy fork.
The Bicycle I test rode came in a full Matte Grey with silver graphics. The minimal graphics in a few places on the frame looked new and refreshing. The straight top tube along with the thin chain stays was a good contrast to the rugged and well-treaded tires. The colour-coded bar tape and fork enhanced the aesthetics of the Pirate 3.0.
It is essential to have good range of gears for different terrains, as a Gravel Bicycle is meant to roll on all kinds of terrains and Firefox have kept that it in mind when picking out the derailleurs. This Bicycle is equipped with microShift R8 2-Speed at the front and microShift R9 8-Speed at the rear as derailleurs. During the test ride this entry to mid-level Road Bicycle groupset from microShift gave the perfect range for both quick accelerations as well as minor climbs on the both rough and flat surfaces. The 2x8-Speed microShift R8 integrated shifters were smooth and easy to use. The R8 and R9 derailleurs from microShift are equivalent to Shimano’s Claris and Sora road derailleurs in terms of performance.
The Tektro Mechanical Disc brakes are performance level braking components commonly used on road and MTB Bicycles. These Disc brakes are cable triggered, but benefit from a dual piston design. This means that both pistons move equally against the rotor, as opposed to the single piston design. The main advantage is that the force applied at the lever is split between both pads to give a balanced braking experience.
The Zoom Alloy Road handlebar was in short reach making it comfortable to hold on to while riding. The tapered headtube that is big at the bottom and small at the top not only saves weight but also provides good stiffness and smooth steering even on rough roads.
The 700x32C tires were heavily treaded for road bicycle standards. These tires have a classic spaced out tread pattern to provide equal traction on rough and wet surfaces.
The road specific sport saddle had a good texture but felt a little narrow for anyone looking to get on the edge and sprint occasionally. The overall ride quality was comfortable and fast on both rough and smooth roads.
With a frame and fork combination that shines when conditions get rough, this Bicycle is a fine entry into the world of Cyclocross. The balanced Mechanical Disc brakes and a comfortable riding posture provides full control of the Bicycle on rough and wet surfaces. If you are someone looking to get into road and gravel riding then the Pirate 3.0 from Firefox is definitely a great choice to consider.
Prices and Specifications/Components are subject to change by the brand, without due notice.