Tifosi SS26 Potenza review

British brand’s all-round race rig

Our rating 
3.5 out of 5 star rating 3.5
GBP £2,500.00 RRP

Our review

A great blend of smoothness, stability and compliance with an exciting edge
Buy if, You want a smooth riding endurance machine and are prepared to make some upgrades
Pros: Supple, smooth and stiff, a great chassis
Cons: The wheel and tyre combination hampers the bike’s potential
Skip to view product specifications

The Tifosi SS26 Potenza is named after the road that runs between the French and Italian sides of Mont Blanc in the stunning Aosta Valley.

Advertisement

Living up to the awesome geography of its namesake, the SS26 is a fine looking bike. Tifosi’s linear graphic styles and colour palette look brilliant and the frame’s styling features angular frame tube profiles — that T-section top-tube comes straight out of BMC’s back catalogue — while the aero-profiled seatpost seamlessly blends into triangulated and dropped seatstays.

The interlocked fork crown and forward-arching fork following similar lines to Pinarello’s latest designs.

The carbon seatpost’s head clamp allows for greater adjustment
Robert Smith / Immediate Media

The bike is built around Campagnolo’s Potenza groupset with a performance-orientated 11-28 cassette and 52/36 chainset. Campagnolo shifts with the rapid mechanical efficiency we’ve come to expect from the brand’s Ergopower design, and is matched to its late-comer disc brakes.

The brakes have definitely been worth the wait, they are the most adjustable of any disc brakes out there, but the feel straightaway is one of a fine balance between power and control.

The Deda Zero bar and stem are good quality items. We’ve always been fans of Deda’s bar shape so this, plus the Prologo saddle, means the contact points are sorted.

Flattened seatstays improve ride comfort
Robert Smith / Immediate Media

The ride is a balance between stiffness and suppleness, power transfer is exceptional in the right setup, the bike responding well to sprints. Comfort levels impress too with the space afforded for bigger volume tyres and the D-shaped carbon post offering plenty of flex.

The geometry is aimed squarely at the endurance rider, the 589mm stack and 391mm reach [vertical and horizontal distances from the centre of the bottom bracket to the centre of the head-tube respectively] on my large test bike are at the sportier end of things and the frame angles pitch the bike more towards stability rather than rapid handling.

Campagnolo’s disc brakes were well worth waiting for
Robert Smith / Immediate Media

The SS26 can still be hustled through corners, and feels composed though tight twists and turns.

The problem, in this spec, is that the middle-weight wheel and tyre combination feels a little sluggish. I swapped them for a lighter wheelset and lighter tyres, allowing the SS26 to come alive with a muscular responsive ride that lives up to its looks.

As it stands, the SS26 is a good bike, but with some lighter, faster-feeling wheels, it has the chance of being a great one.

Advertisement

Tifosi SS26 Potenza spec overview

  • Weight: 8.71kg (L)
  • Frame: Carbon
  • Fork: Carbon
  • Gears: Campagnolo Potenza 11-28, 52/36
  • Brakes: Campagnolo Potenza hydraulic disc, 160/140mm rotors
  • Wheelset: Miche Race AXY-WP
  • Tyres: 28mm Michelin Power Endurance
  • Bar: Deda Zero
  • Stem: Deda Zero
  • Saddle: Prologo Kappa
  • Seatpost: D-shaped

Product Specifications

Product

Name SS26 Potenza
Brand Tifosi

Available Sizes XS S M L XL
Seatpost D-shaped
Reach (cm) 39.1
Stack (cm) 58.9
Head Tube (cm) 19
Frame size tested L
Wheelbase (cm) 98.81
Top Tube (cm) 56.81
Seat Tube (cm) 52.3
Wheelset Miche Race AXY-WP
Weight (kg) 8.71
Stem Deda Zero
Shifters Campagnolo Potenza
Seat Angle 73.25
Brakes Campagnolo Potenza hydraulic disc, 160/140mm rotors
Saddle Prologo Kappa
Rear Tyre 28mm Michelin Power Endurance
Rear Derailleur Campagnolo Potenza
Head Angle 73
Handlebar Deda Zero
Front Tyre 28mm Michelin Power Endurance
Front Derailleur Campagnolo Potenza
Frame Material Carbon
Fork Carbon
Cranks 52/36
Cassette 11-28
All measurements for frame size tested L