Raleigh Detour Deluxe review

Practical commuter tested and rated

Our rating 
4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

Our review

The Detour Deluxe is a step in the right direction for Raleigh, and for serious commuters looking for durability and comfort.
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Raleigh America is getting wonderfully nichey of late, adding fixed-gears, singlespeeds and utility bikes to its stable. The 2008 Detour Deluxe is a well-designed commuter, reliable to the quick, but lacking a few special touches.

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The $US710 Detour Deluxe does several things right. First, the 700c wheels roll over most everything on the pavement. The adjustable stem and riser bars allowed our riders to dial in the reach, and the smart Shimano Dynamo front hub generated power to the front and rear lighting system, with cables cleanly routed through the frame and under the rear fender. The full fenders and pannier-friendly rear rack reflected the Detour Deluxe’s true calling: transportation through all conditions. Even the Avenir wide saddle plays an important role, keeping one’s tender areas from chafing in such an upright, traffic-wary position.

Noticeably absent, however, was a kickstand. The longer chainstays and ample clerance between the lower seat tube and chainstay bridge allow for one; no doubt the product managers at Raleigh could have spec’d an all-important kickstand. Surely it’s not a weight issue. With a machine designed to be so commuter friendly, weight could have been saved by fitting a double or single front chainring versus the stock triple, or just not worrying about the extra weight at all.

Frame

The aluminum tubing is constructed well, but the compact design prompted our 5’7″ tester to really crank the seat higher than looked aesthetically proper, considering the suspension seatpost. If the Detour Deluxe is for you, choose one size larger than normal for proper fit and reach to the bars.

Equipment

The Basta Pilot lighting system is an ideal touch for the Detour Deluxe. The handle three-point setting is easily accessible while riding and insulated housing protects cables from the weather. The Avenir rear pannier rack is well connected, sturdy, and lightweight, but the alloy pedals are too narrow for most shoes, cycling or non.

Wheelset

The 36-hole Shimano disc hubset (Dynamo DH3D front/ M475 rear) are laced to Weinmann XTB-26 double wall rims, and stayed true for the first two months on the road. Our main tester experienced six flats in two weeks; the Kenda K1053 700x35c tires may have reflective sidewalls, but the so-called Kevlar belt didn’t do anything to keep debris from puncturing the inner tubes, front or rear.

Ride

The clever addition of mechanical disc brakes clean up the lines of the fork and rear seat stays, while enabling the rider ample braking power in all conditions. The brakes were a bit tedious to dial in at first, but once the pads and rotors were aligned, there was minimal interference. The simple and effective Shimano Alivio eight speed shifters perform flawlessly, and the Ergon-style Avenir grips are a perfect fit for every hand.

Overall

The Raleigh Detour Deluxe is a steady commuter, with more positives than negatives. It was smart to spec an eight speed cassette, but silly to overlook the kickstand and choose a triple crankset. It was genius to use the Basta Pilot integrated lighting system with front Dynamo, but an oversight to use a compact frame design.

The Detour Deluxe is a step in the right direction for Raleigh, and for serious commuters looking for durability and comfort. Available in the US only.

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© BikeRadar 2007

Product Specifications

Product

Name Detour Deluxe (08)
Brand Raleigh

Bottom Bracket Sealed Cartridge
Saddle Comfy Road
Year 2008
Rear Tyre Size 700x35C
Rear Tyre K1053
Front Tyre Size 700x35C
Front Tyre K1053
Available Sizes 15 Inches 17 Inches 19 Inches 21 Inches 23 Inches
Available Colours Brown
Stem Adjustable
Shifters Alivio
Rims XTB-26 Double Wall
Brakes M465 Mechanical Disc
Rear Hub M475 Disc
Rear Derailleur Deore
Grips/Tape Comfort
Front Hub DH3D Dynamo Disc
Front Derailleur C50
Frame Model Atomic 13
Frame Material Aluminium
Fork Alloy
Cranks TX71
Cassette SRAM PG830 11-32T, 8spd
Pedal Type Alloy