Developed with feedback from world-class racers including Marianne Vos and Coryn Rivera, the Langma is women’s-specific cycling brand Liv’s lightweight race bike, released for 2022 in its fourth generation.
The Langma is a staple of the UCI Women’s WorldTour team Liv Racing, as well as four teams in Mexico, Australia, France and Taiwan.
Liv is the only women’s-specific brand to develop and manufacture bikes totally in house, and has an impressive roster of female engineers, designers and marketers.
Although at the top-level Liv shares some Cadex wheels and tyres with Giant, it operates independently of the unisex brand, with costly carbon moulds specifically for these women’s models.
For 2022, the range is disc brake only, and optimised not only for climbing but cornering handling and sprinting too, as a pure race bike, according to the American brand.
Liv Langma Advanced SL Disc build
Liv’s range-topping Advanced SL-Grade carbon composite frameset has undergone a structural overhaul for the 2022 Langma, with the longer continuous fibre layup using 11 per cent more high-grade Advanced SL material than the first generation Langma, giving a claimed 60g weight saving on the frame.
Switching to disc brake only, the fork is now claimed to have 50 per cent more lateral stiffness, which should help with the narrower tolerances of disc braking systems.
The new aerodynamically optimised Giant Variant SLR seatpost is fully carbon at 141g, with the integrated seatpost clamp from earlier models removed to give easier adjustability based on rider feedback.
Up front, the new Liv Contact SLR carbon bar has been designed with women’s fit data and is clamped to the chunky Giant Contact SLR stem.
Based on feedback from the Liv sponsored racers, tyre clearance has been increased to allow up to 32mm tyres, while the build is specced with 25mm Cadex Road Race tubeless tyres. These roll on the new Cadex 36 carbon disc wheels, with a wide internal rim diameter of 22.4mm.
At this price point, you’d expect nothing less than the best when it comes to the groupset, and correspondingly the bike is equipped with SRAM’s wireless 12-speed RED eTap AXS, although the UK bike’s spec and pricing is yet to be confirmed.
Liv Langma Advanced SL Disc geometry
|Seat angle (degrees)||75||75||74.5||74||73.5|
|Head angle (degrees)||70||71||72||72.5||72.5|
|Seat tube (cm)||39||42||45||48||51|
|Top tube (cm)||49.8||50.8||52.4||54||55.5|
|Head tube (cm)||10.5||12||13.5||15.5||17.5|
|Fork offset (cm)||4.9||4.9||4.9||4.9||4.9|
|Bottom bracket drop (cm)||7.2||7.2||7||7||6.7|
Liv Langma Advanced SL Disc ride impressions
The Langma certainly has pedigree with 47 UCI wins and six national championship titles, and as soon as you swing a leg over you can see why.
This is a bike that dares you to push yourself, to challenge those PBs, to rail it into the corner and attack the climbs.
At my current fitness level it feels like a great compensator, and at performance level you can see how this platform would enable racers to unlock those marginal gains.
The Langma is feather-light at 6.77kg without feeling flimsy or delicate. It rides surprisingly well given the state of most British roads, even with the narrow 25mm tyres, which in fact measure up as 28mm on the wide 22.4mm internal diameter Cadex wheels.
Considering how stiff the bike is for optimal power transfer, the ride isn’t as harsh as you might expect on rougher lanes and even some light gravel.
This is no shrink-it-and-pink-it affair, but truly a build for ambitious women who demand – and deserve – the very best.
Cutting-edge componentry from Cadex including 36mm deep carbon tubeless-ready wheels, Giant’s all-new aero carbon seatpost and the inclusion of the dual-sided Quarq DZero power meter as standard show that this bike is no afterthought.
For a rouleur like me, the Langma SL Advanced Disc handles like a dream, sailing up the punchy ascents and even inspiring me to keep pushing on the longer climbs, which is quite out of character. For a true climbing enthusiast, this bike will no doubt impress.
Quite unlike rim brake race bikes, the fourth generation disc-only Langma is built to take on all conditions with confidence.
Especially relevant for UK riding, the Langma is one for year-round riding and racing, come rain or shine, particularly with the capability to fit 32mm tyres for winter.
You’re encouraged to descend and corner at an exhilarating pace, with the comfort that the powerful and responsive hydraulic braking is just a small squeeze away from your fingertips.
This SRAM Red eTap AXS build is available in North America and Australia. Wireless electronic shifting keeps the cockpit looking clean with just hydraulic hoses out front, and the reliable, consistent gear changes at a minimal movement of the fingertips is a real luxury.
Simply tap the right lever to change down the cassette (harder gear), left to change up, and press both simultaneously to activate a shift of the front mech.
With 10-33 on the back and a 48/35 crankset, the range of 12 gears is impressive too, with ample at either end for both laying down the power while sprinting and also winching up leg-bursting inclines.
The fit from the standard setup was surprisingly good, with a correspondingly sized 38cm bar on the size small and the women’s-specific short-nosed Alacra saddle with a central cut-out proving to be comfortable and supportive.
Whether or not you deem women’s-specific bikes necessary, you can’t quash the efforts of Liv for building a community for beginners and world-class athletes alike.
I had to really nit-pick to try and find the downsides of the Langma SL Advanced Disc. The thick, chunky bar tape was one aspect that didn’t add up, and felt like it would be better suited to a gravel or endurance model rather than a sleek race bike.
The new Liv Contact SLR carbon bar may be designed specifically with ergonomics for a woman’s frame in mind, but with this amount of bar tape it would surely dull any noticeable differences.
Secondly, the Giant Contact SLR stem looks exceedingly chunky (albeit suitably stiff) compared to the design of the rest of the build, and felt somewhat out of place for a brand that insists it operates independently of Giant.
In terms of aesthetics, the paint job is really unique: sometimes a mocha-brown, and purple-ish in other lights, all sealed with an acrylic coating to allow some of the carbon weave texture to show through. Really classy, in my opinion.
Liv Langma Advanced SL Disc bottom line
For an out-and-out race bike for women seeking top-drawer performance gains, it would be hard to argue against the Langma SL Advanced Disc as a worthy contender.
The Langma is no longer just a climbing bike, thanks to aerodynamic improvements that make it an excellent all-rounder.
The five-figure price tag will be out of reach for many, but the good news is that with the Advanced Pro Disc and Advanced Disc series there are plenty more builds at a range of lower price points that still take on some of the same impressive characteristics of the SL model.
|Price||AUD $12999.00EUR €11200.00USD $10000.00|
|Weight||6.6kg (S) – without pedals, but including 2 bottle cages|
|Available sizes||XXS, XS, S, M, L|
|Brakes||SRAM RED eTap AXS hydraulic disc, SRAM CenterLine XR 160/140mm (front/rear) rotors|
|Cassette||SRAM RED eTap AXS, 10-33|
|Cranks||SRAM, 35/48, with Quarq DZero power meter|
|Fork||Advanced SL-Grade Composite|
|Frame||Advanced SL-Grade Composite|
|Front derailleur||SRAM RED eTap AXS|
|Handlebar||Liv Contact SLR|
|Rear derailleur||SRAM RED eTap AXS|
|Saddle||Liv Alacra SLR CS|
|Seatpost||Giant Variant SLR carbon|
|Shifter||SRAM RED eTap AXS|
|Stem||Giant Contact SLR|
|Tyres||CADEX Road Race 25mm|
|Wheels||CADEX 36 Carbon Disc WheelSystem|