The 2nd-tier Specialized Aethos is vastly more affordable and still ridiculously light at 699g

Pro and Expert models launched with claimed 699g FACT 10r carbon frame

Specialized Aethos Expert

Specialized has announced more affordable Pro and Expert versions of the ultra-lightweight S-Works Aethos road bike launched two weeks ago. 

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The S-Works Aethos made headlines with a frame weighing a claimed 585g (size 56cm) made from Specialized’s top-spec FACT 12r carbon. The £13,000 price tag of the halo Founder’s Edition was also somewhat notable.

The Aethos range is aimed at pure riding pleasure rather than racing, and has none of the aero features of the explicitly race-focused Tarmac SL7.

The Aethos Pro and Aethos Expert get FACT 10r carbon frames and are a little heavier at a claimed 699g (size 56cm in “Satin Carbon/Flake Silver”, a colour not actually available in the UK), but still extremely light by any normal measure. 

Pricing starts at £5,500 / $5,200 for the Expert model, which comes with Shimano Ultegra Di2 and aluminium wheels and weighs a claimed 7.14kg complete.

Like an S-Works Aethos, but much, much cheaper

The new Specialized S-Works Aethos
The S-Works Aethos is stunning, but the price tag puts it out of reach for most of us.
Specialized

According to Specialized, the differences between the top-spec S-Works Aethos and second-tier Pro and Expert frames lie in the carbon lay-up and the materials used, but ride quality, geometry and handling are identical, and all versions are disc-only.

The one other key point is that, while the S-Works is designed solely for electronic drivetrains, the Pro and Expert models will accept mechanical groupsets too.

Despite this, the three builds on offer (in the UK at least) are electronic-only, with a choice of SRAM Force eTap AXS or Shimano Ultegra Di2.

Starting at £5,000 less than the ‘standard’ S-Works bikes, these get a full suite of tasty components from Specialized’s in-house component brand Roval, but are differentiated from the S-Works by subtle downgrades. 

The wheels on the Pro models, for example, are the more affordable Alpinist CL rather than the top spec Alpinist CLX. The CLs get the exact same rim, but are built on slightly heavier DT Swiss 350 hubs which carry an admittedly trivial claimed weight penalty of 117g. 

In a similar vein, the Pro and Expert models get titanium-railed saddles rather than carbon ones.

Sitting at the bottom of the range, the Expert also has aluminium wheels and bars while the rest of the range gets carbon. 

Specialized Aethos FACT 10r specs, weights and prices

Specialized will be offering the second-tier frameset in three builds as follows:

Specialized Aethos Pro eTap

  • Claimed weight: 6.82kg
  • Groupset: SRAM Force eTap AXS
  • Wheels: Roval Alpinist CL carbon clincher
  • Price: £7,500 / $7,400 / AU$10,750

Specialized Aethos Pro Ultegra Di2

Specialized Aethos Pro
Specialized Aethos Pro.
Specialized
  • Claimed weight: 6.58kg
  • Groupset: Shimano Ultegra Di2
  • Wheels: Roval Alpinist CL carbon clincher
  • Price: £7,250 / $7,400

Specialized Aethos Expert

  • Claimed weight: 7.14kg
  • Groupset: Shimano Ultegra Di2
  • Wheels: DT R470 Disc aluminium clincher
  • Price: £5,500 / $5,200

Specialized Aethos FACT 10r frameset

Aethos FACT 10r frameset
Aethos FACT 10r frameset.
Specialized
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  • Claimed weight: 699g
  • Price: $3,200 (not available in UK)