Giant’s TCR Advanced 2 has beaten 47 other bikes to become BikeRadar’s Road Bike of the Year for 2018.
The TCR’s fantastic performance, impressive comfort and stunning value was enough to clinch the coveted title. So good was the TCR’s value that it also took our best road bike under £2,000 category from the same test.
The TCR, in its Advanced 3 guise, was our very first Bike of the Year winner, and the TCR Advanced 2 won in 2013. In the intervening years the model has undergone numerous revisions, but you can still see some of that decade-old DNA in the 2018 iteration.
The latest TCR is a process of evolution not revolution, Giant has tweaked the design with subtle improvements that add up to one of the most compelling and well-priced bikes today.
Giant should be applauded for its commitment to developing its own parts and wheelsets. Gone are the bland, branded-up parts of old, replaced with highly competent, well-made and designed finishing kit.
The TCR Advanced 3 bucks the trend for inflation in bike prices, the 2018 model has the same equipment levels as that first Bike of the Year winner, but that bike was £1,600 and this one undercuts it by £151.
Fiscal reasons aside, the TCR takes top honours because of its accomplished performance. The years of development have made a bike that’s wonderfully refined to ride — it blends speed and supple smoothness to levels we’d never expect from its modest price.
While we believe that discs are the future, and are unrivalled in adverse weather conditions, they still come with a premium over rim brakes. Disc brake-equipped bikes are compromised elsewhere spec-wise to get in the latest technology, even if that will eventually change.
The TCR is that rare beast, which will appeal to racier riders but not scare those who prefer more recreational riding. Any bike that makes every ride better and makes you feel like a better rider is a very worth winner, irrespective of the components of its components.