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Lapierre is a French Bicycle Company founded in 1946. This French bicycling giant caters to all types and terrains of riding. The French UCI Pro team 'FDJ' ride Lapierre road bicycles. Primarily known for their vast range of road bicycles, this brand is known to have a road bicycle for every specific need. We got the opportunity to review the endurance focused Audacio 300 TP 2015 from Lapierre and here is what we thought.
The Audacio 300's frame is well built. The 6061 aluminium frame is neatly finished and with the company's slightly bowed seatstays, which Lapierre says helps to dampen some of the road buzz. The forks are carbon-fiber, which has an obvious effect on the lighter front half of the bicycle. The relaxed geometry on the Lapierre Audacio 300 TP creates a more upright position than more race-focused road bicycles. Many manufacturers are moving in this direction with the popularity of sportives and leisure riding, where grinding your body forward on the front half of the bicycle for a few hours at 30mph is not deemed normal, or good for your back. Especially for amateur cyclists.
Lapierre has been quite patriotic when it comes to designing the Audacio 300 TP 2015. This Audacio 300 is a pictorial representation of the French National Flag, with Blue, White and Red used evenly all across the bicycle. The slightly aero top tube thins out as it approaches the seat tube and the carbon forks are sleek and slanted enough to break the wind. The bold stickering of the brand, components and their UCI Pro Team makes the bicycle look sophisticated. And to add it all up, who does not like bright red bar tapes to hold on to.
Lapierre Audacio 300 TP 2015 has been specced well with a full drivetrain of Shimano Sora components. This means you get Dual Control brake/shift levers and swooping lines to the drivetrain components that were once the preserve of Shimano's far more expensive parts. Shifting from any position on the bars were easy during the test ride, although I experienced the chain rubbing on the front derailleur cage when moving to the extremes of gears on the cassette. This could be trimmed out by diligent clicking of the front shifter after a bit of getting used to it. With a relatively narrow cassette ratio of 12-27 teeth, I also found myself shifting up and down the chainset more, when compared to other road bicycles equipped with same number of sprockets.
The Promax RC481 pivot brakes on the Audacio 300 was just passable enough and were probably the weakest component in the test ride when compared to the other parts on this bicycle. Promax's RC481 brakes have always been on the weak side though and that doesn't change here. An upgrade from the stock brake pads is always a must especially if you ride a lot in wet conditions; the current Promax brake pads are too hard to offer any decent modulation.
Double butted 6061 alloy on the Ritchey Comp Curve road handlebar keeps weight reasonable and helps the handlebar reduce road buzz noticeably without sacri´cing too much stiffness. The straight section of the drop provides a good combination of ergonomics for powering on the ´äat roads and ease of braking on descents.
The Michelin Dynamic Sport 700c x 25c tires on the Audacio 300 TP 2015 is Michelin's cheapest road bicycle tire. This tire has a 30 TPI casing, which isn't that exciting. As this is a wire bead tire, it has a higher weight than most folding tires. The Selle Italia X1 saddles are the exact same which are used by the pro-riders in the UCI tour. This shows the high level performance oriented design of the saddle with width and length perfect for riding long distances without any soreness. The ride quality was smooth and easy on the body, when tested on flat tarmacs with nil inclines.
The Audacio 300 can be used as a road bicycle for longer rides and to get a taste of competitive sportive races as well. Priced at Rs.72,650, this bicycle represents a very good buy for the components it comes with. So while it might not be the perfect race bicycle, the Lapierre Audacio 300 TP (2015) is a fine speed machine for the beginner cyclist to go on longer endurance rides regularly.