Giant has been making carbon composite bikes longer than most, and brings a huge wealth of experience to the table. Here, it offers a fairly priced carbon bike with a sensible component package.
As the name suggests this bike has been designed to pedal fast on the tarmac, combining road speed and competence with the comfort and forgiving ride of a flat-bar bike.
Giant FastRoad Comax 2 frame and kit
While the curved frame might look funky it’s designed to deliver a rider friendly and compliant ride. The jury’s out on the looks but you don’t notice this once you’re pedalling.
These curved tubes give the illusion of the head-tube being long with a high front-end, but the 130mm head-tube here isn’t dissimilar to many drop-bar endurance bikes.
The D-Fuse composite seatpost provides a little more comfort David Caudery/Immediate Media
On the road there’s a good balance between speed, upright stability and comfort. The front end feels stiff and precise thanks to Giant’s OverDrive tapered steerer that runs 1 1/4in lower and 1 1/8in upper bearings. The steering instills confidence thanks to its stability — I never had any twitchy issues regardless of my speed.
With this frame, it’s more about what you don’t notice. Its compliance plus the D-Fuse composite seatpost soak up road vibrations, making the FastRoad feel comfortable and forgiving.
While it’s not a sharp shooter it never feels slow or sluggish, and continues to deliver a comfortable ride, however long you’re in the saddle.
The narrow bar has room for Shimano Tiagra shifters David Caudery/Immediate Media
The 10-speed Shimano Tiagra gears front and rear do a solid job, and help to keep the overall price of the bike down. The wide range of gear options available from the 11/34 cassette and FC-RS400 50/34 compact chainset meant I never missed it not being 11-speed.
The cockpit is user friendly and Giant’s Connect flat bar is inoffensive and comes with its own Contact Ergo bar ends. I didn’t use them much during testing, but if you come from a mountain bike or spin-class world, you will probably make good use of them.
The forgiving and friendly nature of the Giant is hard to beat Robert Smith
The bar is narrow at 56cm including bar ends, and I really noticed it initially, missing the chance to tuck into wider bars on fast descents. For all other duties, it felt good and not dissimilar to being sat up on road bars.
Giant’s own brand wheels are okay and benefit from being laced with quality Sapim spokes. They’re also tubeless ready to help avoid pinch punctures, so you can run the 28mm Giant Gavia AC tyres at lower pressures. I found that the Gavias worked fine on the road but did start to struggle when I came to gravel.
As a package the FastRoad is an extremely capable bike Robert Smith
Giant FastRoad Comax 2 overall
As a package, the FastRoad is an extremely capable bike, regardless of the distances you want to cover. Giant has given it a rider-friendly spec and has used its experience in carbon construction to make sure the bike has a forgiving ride.
It’s stable and reassuring, ideal for all-day rides. That’s not to say it’s not fun to ride, it is. It’s just not as edgy as some. Best of all it offers great value considering what you get for the money.