Montra is known for their affordable bicycles which are performance focused. Having its strength in Hybrids and MTB’s, Montra also came out with their first ever range of road bicycles in 2015. From the 2017 road bicycle range we got the opportunity to test ride the Montra Unplugged 1.1 (2017) and here is what we thought.
The Montra Unplugged 1.1 (2017) is built on a 6061 alloy frame. The frame geometry is standard and is leaning towards comfort geometry. The bottom tube is rounded and bulky and adds that extra weight to the frame. Yes this frame is heavier than you would like for a road bicycle but at this price there is not much butting this frame could go through to get any lighter. The top tube seems to have become shorter when compared to the 2015 version of the Unplugged 1.1. This has made the reach of the rider shorter and thus making the ride posture more comfortable. The alloy rigid front forks on this bicycle is shaped a bit flat than rounded. This has made the forks aero and could slightly benefit the rider for gaining speed.
The Unplugged 1.1 (2017) from Montra is a budget road bicycle but it sure doesn’t look like one. The bicycle which I test rode came in a black colour with blue graphics. The blue graphics were neatly placed all along the frame, the saddle and even a little on the rims. This colour coding made the bicycle look stylish. The thin and elegant seat and chain stays make the bicycle sleek. The welding on the frame tubes was neat and on the whole the Unplugged 1.1 definitely looks like an expensive road bicycle while being priced staggeringly less.
The Unplugged 1.1 (2017) is powered by Shimano Tourney derailleurs at both the front and rear. Yes these derailleurs are entry-level MTB gearing and same as found on the 2015 version. For this price this is the most the brand could provide. On paper it might not be the ideal gearing for a road bicycle but during the test ride these derailleurs functioned decent enough for me to accelerate and climb flyovers comfortably. Yes the heaviness of the frame is felt when pedaling and that is when you miss having more cogs in order to maintain cadence. The derailleurs reacted slowly after changing the gears. The Shimano Tourney ST-A070 14 speed integrated shifters were easy to use from the drops and hoods.
The stopping power on the Montra Unplugged 1.1 is taken care of by a pair of Promax RC-452 caliper brakes, these brakes worked well during the test ride. Even though the braking components are tiny the brake pads gripped the rims swiftly and made sure sudden stoppages were safe and comfortable. The ST-A070 integrated brake levers were easy to use.
The Promax drop handlebar on the Unplugged 1.1 (2017) is 440mm wide and also has an adjustable stem which makes sure that the handlebar position can be adjusted according to the kind of body posture the rider wants. If you can see the images you can notice that I’ve kept the handlebar all the way down in order to use the drops easily during the test ride. The drops could have been slightly longer so that they can be easily accessible without having to adjust the bar as this position will make it difficult for the rider to use the hoods. The bar tape had enough cushioning and grip for long and fast rides.
The Kenda K191 700c x 23c tires on the Montra Unplugged 1.1 (2017) was fast and was well supported by the lightweight XMR double walled alloy rims. These tires are purely for flat tarmacs. This rubber cannot handle the rough roads and will result in faster wear and tear of the tires.
The Montra race saddle on this bicycle was perfectly shaped for a road bicycle. The ergonomically shaped saddle was not only designed well but also had the right amount of cushioning to make you comfortable on longer rides. The overall ride quality on flat roads was fast and comfortable.
This bicycle has a simple frame geometry which makes it comfortable for the rider. With easy to use integrated gearing and safe brakes this road bicycle is perfectly functional by all means. If you are someone looking to buy your first road bicycle on a shoestring budget then the Montra Unplugged 1.1 (2017) priced at just Rs.26,100 is the ideal choice for you.