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While cycling is fast becoming the most popular choice for recreation and fitness, there is one phenomenon within the cycling space that is growing faster than the industry could imagine. Road bicycles! Yes, the number of first-time or regular riders who are opting for road bicycles have grown rapidly. There are very few, good quality entry-level road bicycles that exist in the market. Montra have decided to provide the perfect answer with the Celtic 2.1 2015. A well-built and spec'd entry-level performance road bicycle.Here's what we thought after reviewing it."
To start with the frame, the geometry and overall ergonomics are extremely compact and racing focused. The frame, fork combination were rigid and had very minimal lateral movement. One area, which we hope that Montra will look into In the future, is the fact that the bicycle feels a tad unresponsive when you decide to pedal hard out of the saddle. You sense a lag due to delayed weight transfer, every time you throw the bicycle from side to side. This being said, the ride and power transfer while on the saddle is smooth and responsive.¾The saddle on the Celtic 2.1 is a basic unit for short to medium rides. It does not have the necessary cushioning and firmness to hold out on extremely long rides. One could always look at a saddle upgrade after running it in for a few months
Montra's design, decals and overall visual imagery have been improving with every passing season. The design of the Celtic 2.1 stands testament to that. The decals and paint job are right up against the best in the business. The brand has gone into great detail with this new line of road bicycles to give Indian consumers a really good-looking entry-level road machine.
The area where the Celtic 2.1 2015 scores is in terms of the componentry that it has been equipped with. It is safe to say that you will find it difficult to find a road bicycle that is spec'd so well and yet kept at a competitive price point. The 16 speed Montra Celtic 2.1 comes with Shimano Claris ST-2400 (STI Levers) for front derailleurs, and Shimano Claris CS-HG50 (11-28T, 8 Speed). These are controlled by Shimano Claris ST-2400, 8 Speed integrated shifters. This Claris groupset does a good job in ensuring a good ride across all gearing levels. The Shimano BB-ES25 Bottom bracket handles the transfer of power. We would recommend that you get your gears tuned once, before you leave the showroom after buying this bicycle.
Braking on road bicycles are not meant to be bone jarring, but gradual and precise, based on the input from the brake levers. The Tektro RC-312 Calipers (Front and Rear) used on the Montra Celtic 2.1 does the job well in the braking department. You will find it sufficient for the purpose the bicycle is built for. Like most new bicycles, make sure you spend considerable amount of time understanding the pressure levels on the brake levers, as they tend to be different from bicycle to bicycle, depending on the combination and brand of braking componentry used. The Alloy rigid fork with an integrated crown and a 1 1/8'steerer is precise and responsive when you want to change directions.
On picking up one of these wheelsets, the first thing we noticed is the low weight. The Kenda Koncept 700 x 23C tires felt fine on smooth tarmac, and just to be sure we tried them on a rougher road path and these tires rolled over them just fine. To expect anything more from a tire like this would be unreasonable.
Like most road bicycles, the ride on this will be relatively stiff due to the tuning of the geometry and overall setup. The Celtic 2.1 takes to potholes and undulations with moderate vibration feedback to the rider. One must remember that spec'ing of componentry for a brand is always driven by a constraint in the form of pricing.¾
To conclude, keeping the price constraint in mind, Montra have done well with the Celtic 2.1 2015. They have managed to put together a well designed and aesthetically pleasing bicycle that has well specÈd componentry usually found on more expensive roadies. The overall experience on the Celtic 2.1 is good, and we certainly think that it must be an option to consider for riders who are entering the road segment in India. This bicycle is sure to keep you good company on your medium to moderately long rides on the tarmac.