The Dolomites are a mountain range in northern Italy. In the 1970s they gave their name to a charming little Triumph saloon car, but in the 2010s they've become the inspiration for a line of affordable road bikes under the Evans Cycles in-house brand, Pinnacle.
The Dolomite Six sits at the top of the Pinnacle range and gets a full Shimano 105 11-speed groupset, barring a KMC chain and Tektro R539 brake callipers – more on those later. Pinnacle has shaved some weight off the Dolomite's 6061 aluminium frame for 2015 by using more extensively butted tubing. It's still a fairly modest design, with no fancy curves or bulges, but it looks clean and modern, with internally routed cables keeping things neat, eyelets for a rear mudguard, and bosses to take a rack.
The Dolomite will serve as a trusty commuter, but it's equally at home on a day out in the hills
The matching fork is full carbon with a tapered steerer, a bonus at this price point. Better yet, it has mudguard eyelets too, and clearances to back them up. Pinnacle claims the bike can take 25mm tyres with full mudguards, and 28mm without. We reckon that might actually be conservative – there looks to be room for 30mm of rubber both front and rear. All this sounds like a recipe for a nice all-rounder, and it is. The Dolomite did not disappoint.
We've waxed lyrical before about how brilliant the new Shimano 105 is, but it's worth mentioning again. The shifting action is exceptionally light, and what's especially nice in this case is that you get the lovely matching four-arm chainset, something few bikes at this price point offer.
So what about ride quality? Here, the Dolomite performs well too. The sloping top tube means most riders will have a good amount of seatpost exposed and this, in combination with the stock 25mm tyres, means there's enough give in the rear end that you don't feel battered on rough roads. At the same time, there's enough stiffness on offer when you want to put the power down, even if the weighty Shimano RS21 wheels are never going to set the world alight.
The long-reach Tektros flex more than 105 brakes would
It's worth paying attention to the sizing. According to the advice on the Evans website our tester should have been on a medium, but we chose a small instead, and didn't regret it. The top tube lengths are actually quite long for the sizes, and although slack seat angles and shortish stems compensate, the head tubes are tall too.
The only chink in the Dolomite's armour is the brakes. The huge tyre clearance on the fork necessitates a long-reach calliper, so Pinnacle has fitted them both front and rear. The Tektros they've chosen are okay, but they suffer from noticeably more flex than 105-level Shimano brakes.
That niggle, and a rather underwhelming saddle aside, there's a lot to like about the Dolomite. It's a well priced, not too heavy, year-round road bike that's as at home on a group ride as it is on the daily commute. Plus, it's extremely green.