Carrera Vanquish 2012 Review

The Carrera Vanquish is a nice step up from its more affordable Carrera TDF counterpart, and a very good bike for the price. The specs are nice, but the very firm ride might not have as much appeal to riders as the smoother ride of the Carrera TDF and Virtuoso. It is a heavy bike, and the ride is a very firm one which can be a bit unforgiving on bumps, but if you are looking for performance over comfort then the Carrera Vanquish is a great bike to choose.

The frame on the Carrera Vanquish is basically what you would expect from a £500 range bike; an oversize down tube with a triangular profile, a round top and seat tube, basic welding on aluminium chassis and a straight-blade alloy fork. There is nothing that really stands out, it’s just a solid, basic frame. The gearset is a nine-speed Sora groupset from Shimano, which is efficient and has the same thumb-shift as the eight speed Shimano 2300 offers. Carrera have used the extra cassette to help give the Vanquish a very versatile range for gears. The chain set is a compact 50/34 tooth that is paired
up with a 12-26t cassette that gives you a decent low bottom gear and a pretty high top gear without having to make huge jumps. This is probably the biggest improvement the Vanquish has over the TDF that uses a 52/38t chain set.

Comparisons with the Carrera TDF

As nice as the chain set is though, the brakes don’t really meet the expectations created by it. While it’s true that the Vanquish’s Tektro caliper setup is higher quality than you will typically find on a sub-£400 bike, it is strange that it as solid rubber blocks as opposed to metal cartridges that you find on the TDF. Unlike the TDF though, the Vanquish isn’t nearly as hard to wind up to speed as the TDF and it has really quick responsive acceleration. The handling is very good as well, and there aren’t any quirks that could hold off the inexperienced roadie. However, the ride of this bike isn’t going to be universally appreciated. Because it is so firm, after a few hours you will be wanting to find something that is a lot more forgiving since you will be feeling every single bump in the road thanks to the basic weld on the aluminium frame.

There is a lot to like about this bike. It is great quality for the price, and despite its weight it has a very decent ability to accelerate up to speed. The wheels are high quality, and the Mavic CXP22 rims are rims that you would typically see on a lot higher priced bikes, and not on a sub £500 bike, which is very nice. It also handles quite well. If you are looking for a good entry level racer bike or are a larger and more powerful type of bike rider, the Vanquish is one of the best options out there available to you. There is a lot to like about this bike.

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