Giant Revolt Advanced 0 review

Great comfort and spec for gravel roads

Our rating 
4.5 out of 5 star rating 4.5
GBP £2,999
$3,465 / AU$4,299
Giant Revolt Advanced 0 2019

Our review

Giant’s gravel bike is superbly cosseting on every surface, and brilliantly specced for the money
Pros: Extraordinary ride comfort, tubeless setup, gear ratios
Cons: The Crosscut gravel tyres can feel a bit draggy on tarmac

The Revolt is Giant’s answer to the gravel bike questions: what’s one of those, and why should I want one? With a raft of off-road-capable drop bar bikes already in its vast range, how does the Revolt set itself apart from the pack?

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  • The Giant Revolt Advanced 0 is one of our Bike of the Year bikes for 2019. To read reviews of the other contenders and the categories tested across road, mountain and women’s bikes, visit our Bike of the Year hub page.

In typical Giant style, the premier Revolt model — there’s also a Revolt Advanced 2 — has a great specification for the money.

Its Advanced Composite frame and fork share obvious design cues with the road TCR and Defy, and cyclocross TCX, but still offer much that they don’t.

Most obviously, the 700c wheels and 40mm gravel tyres supplied have plenty of clearance, with room for 45mm rubber, or you can swap to 650b wheels, and enjoy even greater tyre volume, we think up to 2in, although Giant doesn’t specifiy.

Beneath the down tube is a third bottle mount and rubber X-Defender shield that covers the tube’s lower half and part of the bottom bracket shell. It’s subtly bonded in place to protect against stone strikes, and there’s a similarly resolved wraparound chainstay protector.

There are mounting points for mudguards and racks, front and rear, with the rear Smart Mounts hidden beneath a removable cover, maintaining clean lines. Every used or unused port on the frameset is well sealed, and all cable and brake hose routing is internal.

Giant Revolt Advanced 0 ride impressions

The first thing I noticed when heading out on my first ride was the flex from the lengthy D-Fuse seatpost. It’s unusual to feel it so obviously, but the post’s D-shaped profile, which is 30mm wide and 25mm from front to back, provides a huge amount of seated compliance.

Factor in the dropped and partly flattened seatstays, the forward position of the rear thru-axle and the 40mm tyres, and you have a plush ride recipe.

Up front, the all Advanced Composite fork has Giant’s OverDrive oversized steerer and relatively slim legs with a slight curve, topped with Giant’s Contact XR D-Fuse handlebar.

With its swept back, flattened tops and compact, flared drops, the handlebar is very comfortable, but it does have unusually short drops, and when descending I sometimes felt the end of the bar in my palm.

Male cyclist riding black bike on Mendips
On- or off-road, the handling is sharp enough to give a lively, engaging ride, but relaxed enough to remain totally stable and composed when things get rough
Robert Smith

The Revolt feels phenomenally smooth on every surface, from broken tarmac to rocky trails at 35psi, and even with 50psi in the tyres, the floaty ride was still mightily impressive.

Plush ride comfort doesn’t mean speed is lacking though, as the Revolt has Giant’s CXR-1 carbon wheelset, which arrived set up tubeless, as most Giants now can. These shallow, wide-rimmed wheels get the big tyres spinning up to speed quickly, with great response to accelerations.

Complementing the bike’s ethos, Shimano’s Ultegra hydraulic drivetrain, with the RX clutch rear mech, feels classy and operates faultlessly.

Specialized has specced Praxis cranks with 48/32 rings on its gravel bikes for a while, and Giant has happily followed suit with the Zayante cranks, and in combination with the 11-34 cassette it gives an ideal range of gears with small, even jumps between.

With a lowest gear of 32×34 and highest of 48×11, the Revolt genuinely can go anywhere at terrain-appropriate speeds. The bike’s spec wants for nothing, and the main way of tweaking performance will be tyre choice.

Giant’s Crosscut Gravel 1 tyres are orientated towards off-road riding, where their widely-spaced, angular diamond and square tread blocks are impressively grippy on everything from dirt to gravel and light mud.

They roll quite well on tarmac too, although their constant buzz highlights the slightly draggy feel I experienced at times.

Its 71-degree head angle, 70mm bottom bracket drop and 1,036mm wheelbase mean that whether on- or off-road, the handling is sharp enough to give a lively, engaging ride, but relaxed enough to remain totally stable and composed when things get rough.

Spinning up road climbs isn’t a chore and there’s ample lateral stiffness for effective big ring sprints. The grip level and reassuringly powerful Ultegra discs bring a relaxing feel to descents too.

The Revolt has a wonderful ride, great spec and decent overall mass that makes it fun to take anywhere. It’s very capable, and easily adaptable for commuting, road training, gravel racing or adventuring with luggage attached. Tyre choice will always be a personal thing, but with the right rubber for your intended use, the Revolt can be a seriously versatile bike.

Giant Revolt Advanced 0 specifications

  • Size (*tested): S, M, ML*, L
  • Weight: 8.72kg
  • Frame: Advanced Grade Carbon Composite
  • Fork: Advanced Grade Carbon Composite, OverDrive steerer
  • Chainset: Praxis Zayante 48/32
  • Bottom bracket: Praxis M24 BB86
  • Cassette: Shimano Ultegra 11-34
  • Chain: KMC X11SL-1
  • Derailleurs: Shimano Ultegra front and Ultegra RX rear
  • Gear levers: Shimano Ultegra hydraulic
  • Wheels: Giant CXR-1 Carbon WheelSystem
  • Tyres: Giant CrossCut Gravel 1 40mm
  • Stem: Giant Connect alloy
  • Handlebar: Giant Contact XR D-Fuse
  • Headset: Giant OverDrive
  • Saddle: Giant Contact SL
  • Seatpost: Giant D-Fuse composite
  • Brakes: Shimano Ultegra hydraulic disc, 160mm rotors

Giant Revolt Advanced 0 geometry

  • Seat angle: 73 degrees
  • Head angle: 71 degrees
  • Chainstay: 42.5cm
  • Seat tube: 49cm
  • Top tube: 56.5cm
  • Head tube: 16.5cm
  • Fork offset: 5cm
  • Trail: 7.1cm
  • Bottom bracket drop: 7cm
  • Wheelbase: 1,036mm
  • Stack: 58.8cm
  • Reach: 38.5cm
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BikeRadar would like to thank Stolen Goat, Lazer, Northwave and Effetto Mariposa for their help and support during our Bike of the Year test.