Cycling review: Raleigh Revenio Carbon
Lacking a little oomph, but some very nice touches
Frame: T700 carbon frame with internal cabling
Gearing: Shimano 105 gears, gear shifter and derailleurs
Wheelset: Raleigh AC2.0 wheels. Schwalbe Lugano tyres
Brakes: Tekto R340 with cartridge pads
"Please don't buckle, please don't buckle..." It was the small hours of the morning and somewhere outside of Needham Market in Suffolk when a spoke from my front wheel popped out with a metallic ping and rattled away into the night. I was tackling the 120-mile Dunwich Dynamo on a new Revenio Carbon racer from Raleigh and faced the prospect of nursing it the 30-odd miles, while hoping another spoke didn't abscond and leave me with a buckled wheel.
The Dunwich Dynamo is a rock-up-and-go ride – there is no formal organiser – that takes place every July and sees several thousand rides start with a pint in Hackney before weaving their way through east London's polluted streets and cruising through Epping Forest, before crossing Essex and the supposedly flat "Suffolk Prairies" and finally putting the final hammer down to strike for the Suffolk coast at the lost city of Dunwich.
Pedalling through the night is a liberating experience – life's troubles melt away in a mesmerising line of lights, hi-vis gear and smiling riders – and the Revenio Carbon should have been the ideal bike for the job. Part of Raleigh's "endurance" range, it is focused on comfort, with the booming sportive market – long distance cycling events – and rides like the Dynamo in mind. Hence the long wheelbase and tall head tube to reduce the reach to the handlebars and create a more upright riding position. This wheelbase also gives it high-speed stability, which came in useful when barrelling at 25mph in and out of sleepy Suffolk villages.
For the first 90 miles at least, it was a comfortable, smooth ride, which is what you'd expect from Raleigh's latest foray into entry-level fully carbon racers. There are some nice touches, too, such as nifty internal cabling, a smart matte finish, a fancy Selle San Marco Ponza saddle and a great Shimano gearset and drivetrain. The brakes could have had a little more oomph on some tight Suffolk bends, but otherwise (and until my spoke issue), it was a pleasing ride.
I don't want to condemn a bike for one errant spoke, but it's hardly ideal for a £1,500 set of wheels, especially when competition is so fierce at this end of the market. My current bike, for example, is a £900 Carrera Virago from Halfords. It is actually a little lighter and fitted with many of the same components but is £600 cheaper. And there are plenty of other challengers from Trek, Boardman and the like which all compare well against the new Raleigh. When you consider that the Revenio Carbon's higher price also means that it isn't eligible for the Ride to Work salary sacrifice scheme (capped at £1,000), it's hard to make a case for spending the extra cash. The difference is just too slim, so next year I'll be tackling the Dynamo on my trusty Virago.
Now I've said that I'll probably get a puncture.
Click below to read more bike reviews by The Independent's pro-cycling writers:
Saviour of the Isle of Arran's lobster population wins £117,000 'environmental Oscar'
Britain's bluebells now face a fight for their very survival
Snowfalls are now just a thing of the past
Have you heard 'the hum'? Mystery of Earth's low droning noise could now be solved
Animal Extinction - the greatest threat to mankind
- 1 Student jailed for hacking University of Birmingham computers to improve his grades
- 2 Smartphones are making children borderline autistic, says psychiatrist
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 4 Teaching profession headed for crisis as numbers continue to drop and working lives become 'unbearable'
- 5 The most powerful passports in the world
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
Rupert Murdoch berated Sun journalists for not doing enough to attack Ed Miliband and stop him winning the general election
£26000 - £28000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: Senior Accounts Assistan...
£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
£22000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is part of a Group...
£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you a a young, dynamic pers...