Condor make bold claims for their Fratello (it's Italian for ‘brother’): “Our original all-round super bike. Commuter, fast tourer or winter trainer, its inherent versatility makes it ideal if you don’t have space for a stable of bikes.”
Our test team certainly rated its Latin looks and great quality paintwork, and after hundreds of miles of testing we reckon Condor’s other claims aren’t far off the mark. The Fratello is essentially a racing bike that’s very similar to the recently tested Acciaio, but with a bit more comfort plumbed into its DNA.
Its 101cm wheelbase is marginally longer than a racing bike’s, and its seatstays are both considerably slimmer than those on the Acciaio and elegantly curved for a bit more cushioning in the saddle. This, Fizik’s Aliante, is broad and padded enough to satisfy a majority of testers.
Components are those regularly seen on £1,500 bikes: Shimano 105 combining well with Mavic’s Ksyrium Equipe wheels. The 23mm Continental Gatorskins tyres have PolyBreaker puncture protection, and are excellent quality all-round tyres. The Fratello’s less racy credentials are shown by the clearance for 28mm rubber, which would add more comfort, though at the expense of a little speed.
While the Fratello might be less of a speed demon than its brother, it’s a long way from being a slouch, particularly when it comes to climbing. The triple-butted Dedacciai SAT 14.5 frame, carbon fork and Mavic wheels make for an all-in weight of just 9.06kg. This is smooth, light and easily fast enough for sportives.
The oversize Deda bar and stem combo makes for reassuring steering, the curved fork keeping the handling pleasingly neutral. Condor factor a fair amount of versatility into the Fratello, with clearance for mudguards and eyelets for a rear rack too. This really could be the one bike you need if you haven’t got room for a fleet.
It’ll easily tackle commuting, sportives, fast endurance riding and light touring during the summer without mudguards, commuting and training during winter with. While ours was built to a £1,500 budget, the frameset is available at £599.99, and it’s easily good enough to deck out with some seriously spangly wallet-emptying kit.
This article was originally published in Cycling Plus magazine.