Aprire Vincenza 5.0 review£3,195.00

Is this Italian stallion more than a one-trick pony?

BikeRadar score4/5

The Vincenza 5.0 is designed as a race-ready bike that won’t leave you broken at the end of a long day. Aprire is a fairly new name in cycling, created in 2009, but the Brit behind it – Phil Dempsey – has worked as a designer for some major brands, and this experience shows in the Vincenza’s ride.

    The frame is handmade in Italy, using a tube-to-tube method that’s more adaptable than a monocoque construction for custom lay-ups. With a short head tube (15.5cm on our 54cm frame), it leans towards a decent size drop from saddle to bar, but the 73-degree seat angle sets up a riding position that isn’t overtly aggressive – an impressive balance between speed and handling.

    A tapered head tube and steerer are in place for stiffness, but there is more. Additional reinforcing layers – they make up the Latin ‘nose’ on the head tube – direct the twisting forces into the top tube, where they’re handled by this larger frame member. This lack of torsional flex means the bike always ends up where you point it. Diagonal cross-wrapping of carbon plies maintains bottom bracket stiffness despite the threaded bottom bracket; traditional it may be, but there’s no denying the ease of service and wide choice of chainsets.

    The finishing kit is mainly from ritchey:
    The finishing kit is mainly from ritchey:

    The finishing kit is mainly from Ritchey

    But the Vincenza isn’t only about rigidity. Despite the oversize 31.6mm diameter seatpost, the Aprire never left us in pain. “Its easier to make a compliant seat tube in an oversize tube,” says Dempsey, “and the larger post matches the frame aesthetic better.” Whatever the thinking, it works. Noise can be a giveaway to ride smoothness; despite internal cable routing, the Vincenza is exceptionally quiet.

    Available in almost any spec you can think of, the Vincenza’s standout feature is the frameset. We went for a carbon wheel upgrade, but with full Shimano Ultegra and Mavic Ksyrium Elite wheels, the standard Vincenza 5.0 compares well with even the largest players.

    The aprire can be specced with sram or shimano kit and different wheelsets:
    The aprire can be specced with sram or shimano kit and different wheelsets:

    The Aprire can be specced with SRAM or Shimano kit and different wheelsets

    When the only complaint after nearly 2000km of testing is worn bar tape, you know you’re on to a good thing. Great value aside, it’s the ride quality where the Vincenza shines.

    This article was originally published in Cycling Plus magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.

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