Monday, February 23, 2015

Kiss that old bike rack goodbye. Save 20% on select Saris Racks and upgrade your rack.

Introducing the first ever, in-store only rack trade-in program: The Great Rack Upgrade 

Come in for more details!!

1904 Staples Mill Rd.
Richmond, VA 23230
(804) 658-2126

Friday, February 20, 2015

2015 Liv Tempt 27.5 4 Trail Bike Review by Pedal Power, Richmond VA

Liv by Giant introduces the 2015 Tempt 27.5 4

Giant wanted to make sure that the world was clear about their effort to make women specific bicycles. One way to do this was to drop the Giant name, altogether. Thus the line of women's bikes is called Liv. A second way was to actually design these bikes from the ground up to fit women's size, strength, and body shape differences. The 2015 Tempt 27.5 4 is a perfect example of the concept fully played out.
Specs include: 

  • Lightweight and durable ALUXX-grade butted aluminum frame
  • SR Suntour XCT 100mm-travel fork with hydraulic lockout, and preload adjustment
  • Double-wall alloy rims laced to Giant Tracker Sport hubs with 14-gauge spokes
  • Shimano 3x8-speed drivetrain with Tektro Auriga hydraulic disc brakes
By using ALUXX for the frame, Liv has been able to maximize strength while reducing weight and wind resistance. The fluid shaping of the tubes allow the engineers to make the tubes fatter and thicker where needed for strength, while making the tubes thinner and with a smaller cross section where there is no need for strength. Further shaping includes flat, round, oval, and other unique edges that give an aerodynamic advantage.

We consider the Liv Tempt to be one of Pedal Power's top ten bikes of 2015. Come in and test drive one today.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

2015 giant anthem sx 27.5 Mountain Bike Review from Pedal Power in Richmond VA


The lightweight frame and 120mm Travel Fork create amazing performance

Giant didn't create the 27.5 category, but they saw the future and have been leading the industry. Nowhere is that as noticeable as in the new Anthems. Check out these amazing specs:
  • ALUXX SL-grade aluminum frame with 4 inches of smooth Maestro suspension
  • 120mm-travel Fox Float CTD Performance fork with 15mm thru-axle
  • Fox Float CTD Performance rear shock
  • Giant P-XC2 rims, Giant Performance Tracker hubs, stainless butted spokes
  • Shimano SLX / XT 10-speed drivetrain with Shimano SLX hydraulic disc brakes
Listen to what the reviewers are saying

From the theBerm.com.au:
What is an Anthem SX?

For 2015 Giant have created two ‘trail’ versions of their Anthem XC race bike and called it the Anthem SX. For those of you unfamiliar with Giant’s Anthem, it’s a 100mm travel full-suspension XC race bike. To create the Anthem SX, Giant took a standard Anthem frame for 27.5” wheels and bolted on a 120mm fork, a remote adjustable seatpost, and a shorter stem – with brilliant results. There’s an aluminium version with a 2X (two chainrings) Shimano drivetrain and Fox suspension that retails for $2999AUD, and the version reviewed here, the $4999 Advanced version that has a 1X SRAM drivetrain and RockShox suspension.
 See his very in depth reporting on the Carbon version here. 

Why 27.5?  Giant was ahead on this. They jumped in when the realized the following:

Lighter weight

Significantly lower bike and rotational wheel weight helps you climb faster with less effort.

Overall BikeWeight

Compare the weights of identically equipped bikes with different wheel sizes and you'll see substantial weight differences. As expected, the 26-inch-wheel bike is somewhat lighter than the 27.5, and substantially lighter than the 29 (up to two pounds of overall bike weight savings from 29 to 27.5). Every gram saved helps you ride faster.

Wheel/Tire Weight

The overall weight of a 27.5 wheel set (wheel, tire and inner tube) is only 5% greater than that of an identically built 26-inch wheel set. Compare this to the 12% increase of a 29-inch wheel set and you can see how a seemingly small increase in diameter results in substantial weight gain—and poorer performance when climbing or accelerating.

Weight Comparison

Static wheel weight
Lighter wheels/tires result in a quicker acceleration and lighter overall bike weight - a win-win combination.

2. More efficient

Snappier acceleration and a reduced angle of attack for a smoother, more agile ride.


Increased wheel diameter decreases the angle of attack (the angle in which a round object intersects a square object). This is a good thing. A 29-inch wheel rolls over a 6-centimeter square-edge obstacle 14% more efficiently than a 26-inch wheel does. In comparison, a 27.5-inch wheel rolls over the same obstacle 9.8% more efficiently than a 26-inch wheel does.
Another way to analyze angle of attack is the degree of impact—where 26-inch equals X degree, 27.5 equals X-4 degrees and 29 equals X-6 degrees. Again, a shallower angle is better—so 29-inch takes the win, with 27.5 exhibiting nearly the same performance but without the weight penalty.


Arguably the most important benefit of 27.5 over 29 is quicker acceleration. This is the "snap" that a rider feels when they push hard on the pedals. It is affected not just by overall static weight but also where the weight is distributed throughout the wheel. The farther the weight is from the center of the hub, the slower the acceleration. So a similarly constructed 1000-gram 29-inch wheel is slower to accelerate than a 1000-gram 26-inch wheel—because the larger diameter rim and longer spokes place weight farther from the hub. The key to snappy acceleration is minimizing the weight of the outermost components (rim, nipples, spokes, tire, tube). As you can see, a 27.5-inch wheel is only 1.5% slower to accelerate than a similarly constructed 26-inch wheel, but a 29-inch wheel is 3.6% slower than a similarly constructed 26-inch wheel.

3. Better Control

A larger tire contact patch, increased stiffness, and optimized frame geometry improve traction, braking and handling.


The larger the diameter of a wheel, the greater the contact patch of the tire. A larger contact patch results in better traction, which leads to improved acceleration, deceleration and cornering. As you can see, a 27.5-inch wheel has a similar contact patch to the 29.

Frame Stiffness

Lateral (side-to-side) frame stiffness can be affected by wheel size. To accommodate larger wheels, frame dimensions must be elongated. Therefore, a size medium 29-inch wheel frame has more lateral flex (bottom bracket and headtube) than a size medium 27.5 or 26-inch wheel frameset. Additional flex compromises handling under heavy pedaling or sharp cornering.

Frame Geometry

The larger the wheel, the more difficult it is to optimize geometry, especially on smaller frames. As the frame size decreases, headtube heights become higher (in relation to saddle height). On 26 or 27.5-inch frames, it's less of a problem, but geometry limitations can affect smaller 29-inch-wheel frames.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

2015 Giant Trance 27.5 2 Mountain Bike Review from Pedal Power in Richmond VA

Giant Jumped on the 27.5 Wheel Size and Leads the Industry in the Category

As has been true since the introduction of Mountain Bikes in the Hills of Northern California, the serious riders have discovered the best ideas out on the mountain trails. The 26.5 wheel size is no different. 29er's are super effective at handling anything the trail can throw at you, but they are a bit heavy and clunky, and smaller riders are over matched by the bikes pure size. 

On the other hand, the super light and nimble 26" wheel size that dominated the mountain bike business for the first two decades are seen by many as not offering enough control. Solution seems simple enough. Split the baby. The 27.5" concept has provided a bike any rider can fit, increased the grip compared to 26" and dropped weight compared to 29's.

Check out the critical features:
  • ALUXX SL-grade aluminum frame with 5.5 inches of smooth Maestro suspension
  • Fox Float CTD Evolution 140mm-travel fork with 15mm thru-axle
  • Fox CTD Evolution rear shock
  • Giant S-XC2 rims, Giant Tracker Sport hubs, stainless spokes
  • Shimano Deore / SLX 10-speed drivetrain with Shimano M615 hydraulic disc brakes

Here is how Togoparts.com described their experience with the new 2015 Giant Trance 27.5 2:

The all-new 2015 Giant Trance 27.5 2 was designed to cover the vast majority of the different types of off road terrain that one can practically find, with its full suspension and lightweight ALUXX SL aluminium alloy frame that features 140mm of travel at the rear with a similarly matched 140mm travel Fox 32 Float CTD Evolution fork for the front, this aggressive bike can handle almost anything that a regular MTB rider is willing to ride on, with the exception of trails with huge death defying drops which are anyway out of most rider's capability and daringness as well.

Giant's Maestro Suspension Technology is what sets it apart from the other designs of rear suspensions in the market, it's an active and adaptable system that offers pedalling efficiency whether you are climbing up slopes or speeding along single tracks, complete suspension activity that absorbs all trail impacts and total braking independence in which the Maestro Suspension remains fully active and reactive, even under full braking forces.

You also have to love the internal routing of all cables. The clean look of this bike is a pleasure to the eye. Shimon SLX derailleurs, featuring Shadow+, are a perfect fit to this mountain bike.

While those with an extra thousand dollars are so may want to move up to the carbon version of this bike, the Trance Advanced, Giant's ALUXX SL aluminum frame is so well designed that only the most sophisticated rider will notice any difference. By using fluid shape forming technology, the ALUXX frames give you stiffness where you need it, aerodynamics whenever and wherever possible, and a fantastic weight advantage compared to traditional aluminum frame.

This is considered as one of the top 10 bikes we offer in 2015. Come by Pedal Power and test drive the amazing new 2015 Giant Trance 27.5 2 Mountain Bike, and see if this might be the perfect bike for you to test your skills on our local paths.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

2015 Giant Sedona DX Comfort Bike for Road or Trail from Pedal Power, Richmond VA

Just jump on and ride for fitness, fun, and family outings

There are plenty of bikes from Giant and Liv that are uniquely created for a very specialized ride. Some are great for downhill mountain biking.  Some are for cross country riding on off road paths. Some are designed to take professional racers to the podium in road racing, cyclocross, or BMX competitions.

The 2015 Giant Sedona is built for your comfort. With upright handlebars, a super comfortable suspension seat post and big fat seat, and front shocks, Sedona almost floats along streats, boardwalks, strands, and trails.

The women's specific version offers a full step-through frame. Both versions of the 2015 Giant Sedona DX come with 24 speeds to take you up or down any hill with ease. The trigger shift on the women's bike is designed to take all the confusion out of gear selection. The men's bike offers a grip shifter.

  • Lightweight and durable ALUXX-grade butted aluminum frame
  • Front suspension for comfort and control
  • Suspension seatpost for added comfort
  • Upright position for "heads-up" riding
  • 3x8-speed trigger-shift drivetrain. Grip shift on the men's

But maybe the biggest deal on this bike is the frame material. Giant is now using ALUXX butted aluminum frames. Bikes in this range are generally made from steal or from less sophisticated aluminum tubing. The ALUXX provides the maximum strength at the lowest weight.

Drop by Pedal Power in Richmond, VA anytime and take one of these smooth machines out on a test ride. We've heard plenty of stories from folks who have lost some serious weight using these bikes. They make working out a pleasant experience. 

1904 Staples Mill Rd.
Richmond, VA 23230
(804) 658-2126

Monday, February 16, 2015

2015 Giant Escape 3 City Bike Review by Pedal Power in RIchmond VA


What exactly is a city bike, and why might you want one.

Unless you've been living under a rock, you undoubtedly know that in many Asian and European countries, bicycles are seen as much more utility vehicles than for sport or socializing. In fact, so much so that you might see almost anything being hauled by a bike.

Now the US seems to be bent on catching up, or at least somewhat. And for several years the bicycle industry has been offering new versions called city bikes, urban bikes, or utility style cruisers.

Giant, and their women specific division Liv, have certainly been up to the challenge. One of the bikes that has seen excellent reviews and sales is the Giant Escape. The 2015 model was a major change year, and the changes seem to be winning even more favor for this line.

Part of the big change is in Giant's ability to form aluminum tubing in almost any shape imaginable. The shape can be flat, oval, flat on one side and round on the other, triangular, etc. And the shape, thickness, and cross section can change inch by inch along the length of any tube. This means that more material can be added where structural support is needed, and material taken away to save weight when structural support is not as necessary. The same thing is true for aerodynamics. Sometime you need flat, sometimes round to get the best results.

Because it is now easy to do, these moderately priced bikes can now offer internal routing of the gear and brake cables. This is great for reducing drag, and looks cosmetically better.

Here is some nice coverage of the bike from a self-described amateur who road the bike 1000 miles and gave updates along the way.

Now the Giant Escape 3, which is the entry level bike for this category is not technically called a city bike by Giant. The city bike has upgraded drive train and front forks, plus alloy trekking rack, fenders, kickstand, and an integrated bell. But the idea is still the same. You are getting a fantastic aluminum framed road bike that will work perfectly for daily use, commuting, or just going out riding with friends. 

1904 Staples Mill Rd.
Richmond, VA 23230
(804) 658-2126

Friday, February 13, 2015

2015 Giant Roam 2 and Liv Rove 2 Hybrid Bike Reviews from Pedal Power in Richmond VA

2015 Liv Rove 2 Hybrid bicycle with lockout front fork suspension

Why choose an on road or off road bike? Go where you want on the Roam and Rove Hybrids

Did the auto industry show the bicycle industry the way. Certainly cars that are perfectly fine for an every day commute with just enough engineering to make them suitable for some off road fun, too, are extremely popular. However the designers got there, there is no doubt about the huge popularity of hybrid bicycles. At Pedal Power, we particularly like the set up on the 2015 Giant Roam 2, and its woman specific cousin, the 2015 Liv Rove 2.

2015 Roam 2 Hybrid bicycle with lockout front fork suspension

The Roam 2 is a nice upgrade from the Roam 3 at very little extra cost. At this price point, the best place to upgrade that will effect daily performance is in the drive train and braking, and that is exactly where Giant has upped the ante.

Both bikes are made from ALUXX grade aluminum. The new aluminum bikes from Giant use amazing new technology that allows the tube to be shaped specifically to meet the needs of the rider. Stiffer, thinner, flatter, rounder, fatter, even egg shaped. As your eye travels along each tube you'll see the shape shifting. Here it is better to reduce weight. Over here it is better to stiffen the ride. And over here it is better to reduce drag by making the tube aerodynamic. Capabilities that once were only possible with expensive hand laid carbon fiber are now standard on bikes under $1000.

When all is said and done, you end up with a bike that is just as suitable for a quick trip to the store or a Sunday ride with friends, as it is for a zipping along trails or doing a little downhill competition. You can even buy a second pair of wheels to make the bike faster on the pavement. Likewise you can buy wheels or just tires that will give you better action off road. 

Come in today and test drive the 2015 Roam 2 or the 2015 Liv Rove 2.

Giant Roam 2 Disc Specifications:

Sizes S, M, L, XL
Colour Blue
Frame ALUXX grade aluminium
Fork SR Suntour NEX HLO lock-out, 63mm travel
Handlebar Giant Connect low rise, 31.8mm
Stem Giant Sport alloy, 15 degree
Seat Post Giant Sport alloy, 30.9mm
Saddle Giant Connect Upright
Shifters Shimano Altus, 27sp
Front Derailleur Shimano Acera, 34.9mm
Rear Derailleur Shimano Acera
Brakes Tektro HDM 290 hydraulic, 160mm
Brake Levers Tektro HDM 290 hydraulic
Cassette Shimano HG-200, 11-34T, 9sp
Chain KMC X9
Crankset Shimano M371, 26-36-48T
Bottom Bracket Shimano UN26 sealed
Rims Giant alloy, double wall
Hubs Giant alloy disc sealed, 32H
Spokes Stainless steel, 14g
Tyres Giant S-RX4, 700 x 40c


1904 Staples Mill Rd.
Richmond, VA 23230
(804) 658-2126

Thursday, February 12, 2015

2015 Giant Defy 1 Road Bike with ALUXX SL-grade aluminum and Composite, Alloy OverDrive steerer


The 2015 Giant Defy 1 - So much road bike for such an affordable price

The bicycle industry is talking about the Defy. While most of the attention is on the $10,000 pro model, the good news for the rest of us is that the Alloy version of this bike includes all of the engineering wizardry of the higher priced bikes.

The frame design of the Defy has been winning accolades for years, and the design wasn't changed for the 2015. But improvements were made throughout the bike. In particular the frame tubing is far and away best in class.

In fact, the entire bicycle industry has made massive strides in the construction of aluminum alloy frames, bringing them dangerously close to parity with carbon fiber. Giant, who owns their own factories and forms their own aluminum tubing is at the forefront of this technological revolution with Aluxx alloy tubing. And the Defy is outfitted with SL grade alloy.


From the manipulation of atomic grain structures to our advanced forming and welding techniques, Giant has been at the forefront of aluminum engineering for more than 30 years. Today, ALUXX Aluminum Technology represents the pinnacle of alloy performance.

A heritage of craftsmanship combined with unmatched manufacturing capabilities gives Giant the unique ability to monitor every step of the aluminum frame-building process. Through our
cutting-edge materials science, proprietary forming techniques, and attention to detail, we are constantly advancing aluminum performance to create bikes that are lighter, stronger and stiffer. The difference can be felt in the ride. Every aluminum bike bearing the ALUXX Aluminum Technology label must live up to the highest standards and meet the tightest tolerances of any aluminum frame in the world. Here is the skinny:

Giant's lightest, state-of-the-art aluminum frameset technology featuring our highest strength-to-weight ratios, most advanced forming methods, and unique welding techniques


  • Exclusively features 6011A alloy for unprecedented strength-to-weight ratio

Forming methods

  • State-of-the-art butting results in 20 percent thinner (and lighter) tubes than ALUXX SL
  • Features extensive FluidForming (sophisticated manipulation of tubeset shaping via an injection of high-pressure fluid) and some PressForming (basic manipulation of tubeset shaping via direct mechanical pressure)

Welding techniques

Features both Smooth (double-pass weld technique with hand-sanding to reduce stress risers) and Slim (custom-fit tube junctures to decrease weld material) welding techniques for minimal weight, maximum strength and the cleanest aesthetics

The defy one offers the best components package of any bike in this class.

SizesXS, S, M, M/L, L, XL
FrameALUXX SL-grade aluminum
ForkComposite, Alloy OverDrive steerer


HandlebarGiant Connect, 31.8mm
StemGiant Sport
SeatpostGiant D-Fuse, Composite
SaddleGiant Performance Road
PedalsCaged w/ toe clip and strap


ShiftersShimano 105
Front DerailleurShimano 105
Rear DerailleurShimano 105
BrakesTektro R540
Brake LeversShimano 105
CassetteShimano 105 11x32, 11-speed
ChainKMC X11L
CranksetFSA Gossamer Pro, 34/50
Bottom BracketShimano, Press Fit


RimsGiant P-R2
HubsGiant Performance Tracker Road, Sealed bearing, [F] 24h, [R] 28h
SpokesSapim Race, 14/15g
TiresGiant P-R3, Flat Guard Deflect 3, Front and rear specific, 700x25

1904 Staples Mill Rd.
Richmond, VA 23230
(804) 658-2126

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

2015 Liv Avail Advanced 2 by Giant - The Fantastic Reviews Are In


2015 is the year that the Liv Avail became a serious racing machine

Giant has created a line of women specific bikes that are branded as Liv. The idea is that they are not a Giant Liv bike. One could say that it is the Liv Line by Giant, as Giant's name is still contained on a decal, and the Liv brand is on the Giant website. This may be distinction without a difference, but the real issue comes down to whether Live is really about the women. On that there seems to be no argument. 

The bicycle industry has primary source for all important information. That is BRAIN magazine. Here is what they had to say:

Liv introduced its 2015 Avail line to media at the event in Scotland. With a goal of making cycling more approachable and appealing to women, Giant recently launched its Liv brand, which is designed, engineered and headed up by women. “Most of the composite frames are made by women as well,” said Amanda Schaper, Liv global marketing coordinator. “So Liv is truly made for women, by women.” 
 Each Liv model is handcrafted by Giant, and a small badge stating that located on the seattube near the bottom bracket is the only reference to the parent company that can be found on the frame. 
Schaper said that Liv is 100 percent committed to the female cyclist, as also proven by the expansion of the Liv soft goods line, which has also been redesigned for 2015.
Female editors attending the event rode the Avail Advanced SL 0. The frame weighs in at less than 900 grams, making it the lightest in the 2015 Liv line. Equipped with Shimano Dura-Ace disc brakes, Di2 shifting, Giant's new SLR 0 disc lightweight carbon wheelset, which it also unveiled, this model is the cream of the Avail crop.  
Many of the Avail Advanced SL's core features are borrowed from the Defy, including the D-fuse seatpost, integrated disc brakes, internal cable routing through one side of the frame and the same thin and flattened seatstays. But the Avail frame is not just a tweaked version of the Defy.
“Instead of taking the men's frame, shrinking the top tube and making the head tube taller and calling it a women's bike, we used three years' worth of body dimension research, feedback from athletes, our target consumers, and our ambassadors to determine the ideal geometry,” said Abby Santurbane, global category manager for Liv. “We also took into consideration the intended usage of the bike to find the ideal body angle.”
Santurbane also said that positive feedback about past iterations of the Avail model led them to only make small changes in the frame geometry, including lowering the top tube for improved standover height. The geometry is optimized for long rides on varied road conditions, with frame seat angles that help put the rider's center of gravity over the bottom bracket and a head tube angle ranging from 70-72 degrees.
 While the Avail Advanced bike range is not just a smaller version of the Defy, the core characteristics, including handling, stiffness, comfort, weight, and components are common to each line. For a complete evaluation of the brother bike to the Avail, see our detailed review of the 2015 Giant Defy Advanced here.

Please come visit us at Pedal Power in Richmond, VA. We will be happy to sit down with you and help you determine which of the Liv bicycles might be perfect for the kind of cycling you have in your future.

1904 Staples Mill Rd.
Richmond, VA 23230
(804) 658-2126

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

2015 Giant Defy Advance 1 Road Bike Reviews Are Stunning!

The all new 2105 Giant Defy Advance 1 provides tested best-of-class in weight and stiffness

—Defy Advanced 1: Carbon-fiber frame, mechanical disc brakes, D-Fuse seatpost, Shimano Ultegra 6800 mechanical, TRP Spyre mechanical disc brakes, Giant S-R2 rims

The stats don't begin to tell the story of the huge revision Giant has put into the new Defy line. Over the years, Defy has been about basic built for comfort and practical road use. With the changes in 2015, the Defy may be more comfortable and practical than ever, but there is nothing basic about it.

The engineers opted to go 100% disc on the advanced carbon-fiber frame end of the line. The chose to stay with quick release rather than move to through axles, feeling that grabbing mountain bike axles wasn't the answer, and preferring to wait until there was more clarity on the road bike standards.

Bicycling.com says:
Giant calls the Defy an endurance road bike—I’m not so sure that such classification is necessary. Much like modern trail bikes are to the world of knobby tires, the Defy seems to me to be a bike you’d choose to ride on almost any ride, any day, on any terrain, and feel confident and comfortable the whole time. 
Specifically, they point out that:
The New Defy Design
The tube shapes are different, subtly in some places and more dramatically in others. The old aero-shape seatmast (or seatpost, depending on the model is gone in favor of a
flat-backed profile Giant calls D-Fuse, which first saw use on the TCX cyclocross model. The seatstays narrow to gossamer thinness, and attach lower down the seat tube to help prevent vibration from traveling up to the saddle.
 The trick on this bike was to come up with lightness, stiffness, and still get performance and comfort that this bike is noted for.

RoadBikeReview.com interviewed Jon Swansan, global road category manager:

Weight was also a huge design driver. Swanson says the top end frame is the lightest road frame Giant has ever produced. “The perception is that with road disc you have to pay a weight penalty,” said Swanson. “We approached it as how do we offset that weight. And we actually dropped 50 grams on our top end frames, which is pretty significant when you see our competition having to add 40-50 grams to get disc tabs on.”

That weight was shed in part by using hollowed carbon dropouts, eliminating the brake bridge, and generally minimizing the need for reinforcement frame material by reducing the number of holes in the carbon frame. The front brake hose is routed externally; all other cables/hoses go into one side of the frame because when you punch a hole in frame you have to add weight with reinforcing material. Instead Giant made a single slightly larger hole on the non-driveside.
 Giant took this bike to the lab against it's most relevant competitors. They looked at weight, stiffness, and compliance, where compliance is the comfort to feet, hands, and rear end. The lower the amount of vibration that comes from the road, through the bike, to the three points of contact on the bike, the better for comfort in a longer ride.

As you can see, the Defy handily beat the others in both weight and stiffness.

When it came to compliance, the best number was chalked up by Cannondale's Synapse. However, if you look at the stiffness data above on that same model, you'll see that the bike performed very poorly in that category, apparently preferring to compromise on the side of comfort.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Giant Defy Advanced 1 Road Bike Review in RoadBikeReview.com

Giant Defy Advanced 1 Road Bike

4.77/5 (13 Reviews)
MSRP : $3700.00

Product Description

Burn up the pavement with amazing speed on Giant's Defy Advanced 1. But wait, did we mention it's one of the most comfortable road bikes you'll find...

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Brooke Willson a Recreational Rider

Date Reviewed: August 25, 2014

Strengths:    Components, frame, comfort, price

Weaknesses:    Only that I need to lose 40 pounds to do this bike justice

Bottom Line:   
I'd been waiting to lose more weight before upgrading from my 2009 Trek 2.3 (Shimano 105), believing that I just couldn't justify riding a CF bike until I was lighter myself. Upon retirement, I finally took the plunge on the blue 2014 XL Defy Advanced 1 that had been sitting in my LBS for the last nine months waiting for me. I still need to lose the weight, but . . . oh my goodness, what an incredible bike!

First, and most importantly, in my dotage I've decided that all other things being equal, SERVICE is the difference in buying anything important and/or expensive. One of the reasons I bought the Giant is because that's what my favorite Richmond, VA bike store -- Pedal Power Bikes -- sells. It's not the biggest LBS in Richmond, but Randy, Sean, Travis, and Latane know me by name and give me the frequent flyer discount. They never try to sell me more than I really need. If I have a problem, I know they're going to resolve it quickly and well.

That being said, after spending a year researching classic/plush/endurance road bikes, it was clear to me that Giants are consistently specced better than similarly priced bikes. I suspect that's because Trek, Scott, and the other bikes actually made by Giant have to pay Giant for the frame, so they cut corners on the components to match Giant's prices. That shows up especially in cranksets, wheels, saddles, and handlebars. The Defy Advanced is 100% Ultegra gruppo, a CF seatpost supporting a Fizik Aliante pro-level saddle. I did move
my FSA Wing Pro handlebar upgrade from my Trek to the Defy, but that's the only upgrade I felt I had to make. If you're comparing the Defy Advanced to similarly priced bikes, look carefully at the components. Trust me, a FSA crank does NOT shift as well as an Ultegra. Trek's stock saddles are horrible. Compare apples to apples.

Riding this bike is just astonishing. Once I got the fit dialed in by putting a shorter stem on it, the bike "disappeared beneath me." That's a cliche from bike magazine reviews, but once in a while cliches are true. The day after I bought the bike I rode the same 30 mile loop I rode the day before I bought the bike. I was 1.1 mph faster on the Defy Advanced. Not only did I climb hills faster, I descended hills faster. I can explain the first, but not the second. More importantly, at the end of the ride I wasn't worn out by the road buzz from my old aluminum frame. From my hands to my butt, I felt so much better I couldn't believe it.

The Ultegra group is wonderful. Shifts are crisper and quicker than 105, with shorter lever throws and less effort. The brakes are everything I could ask for and more.

I was amazed at the out-of-the-box comfort of the Fizik Aliante saddle. On the Trek, I went through three saddles before finding one I could live with (Bontrager Affinity RL). I have no need to swap out this saddle, and it gets better with every ride.

I see that Giant is tweaking the frame for 2015, and going all-out on disk brakes. Obviously, they know something about the UCI. My recommendation is that unless you really need disk brakes, and your ego requires the latest-and-greatest of everything, don't hesitate to snatch the current Defy Advanced while you can. As the British would say, this bike is brilliant
Favorite Ride:   Ashland, VA area

Price Paid:    $2900.00

Purchased At:   Pedal Power Bikes, 1904 Staples Mill Rd. Richmond VA 23230
(804) 658-2126


Similar Products Used:   2009 Trek 2.3

Bike Setup:   Full Ultegra gruppo, FSA Wing Pro Compact handlebar, Shimano PD-A520 (SPD) pedals, Continental Gatorskin tires

1904 Staples Mill Rd.
Richmond, VA 23230
(804) 658-2126

2015 Giant Talon 27.5 3 Review - Light, Quick, and "Playful"

The 27.5 compromise - "playful" results for the Giant Talon

Also called 650B, the new wheelsize and accompanying smaller lighter frame provides the greater stability and confidence of a the larger wheels, while creating a more "playful" feel. Don't take our word for it. Here is how BikeRadar.com reviewed the Giant Talon 27.5 3:

The Talon 4 was our first experience with a 650B wheeled bike at this price point, and we liked the outcome. 
650B makes a lot of sense at the budget price point – it provides a lighter feeling and more playful ride compared to a 29er, while still providing greater control to 26in wheeled bikes.

 Ride and handling: handling and control beyond its price

The Talon 4 is an entry-level bike that’s full of surprises. Taking the Talon off-road, we were immediately surprised by its confident handling and playful ride nature. We’d previously ridden the Talon 29er and found it slow to accelerate and hard to throw around, but the 27.5 does away with these traits.
It was sprightly and easy to get up to speed, yet never felt twitchy. This characteristic made the Talon a joy to ride, encouraging us to find the limits of the tyres in and out of every corner. Large volume tyres meant it didn’t feel harsh – they numbed much of the trails buzz. 

While the entire lineup of Talon's offer great performance, we suspect that the Giant Talon 3 will be the choice of most Pedal Power customers. We believe that the better drive train offering, with Shimano HG20 11x34, 9-speed casette and FSA Dynadrive, 22/32/44 crankset, makes it well worth a few extra bucks compared to the Giant Talon 4.  Besides, you can also buy the 3 in Yellow! What more could you ask?

Giant shows off their amazing proprietary aluminum frame design capabilities on the Talon. Giant opts to increase lateral stiffness in the headset and bottom-bracket areas, which helps to make the ride even feel more nimble.

Here are the complete specs:


SizesS, M, L, XL
ColorsBlack/Red, Yellow
FrameALUXX-grade aluminum
Fork SR Suntour XCM w/ hydraulic lockout & preload adjuster, 100mm travel



HandlebarGiant Connect XC, Low rise, 31.8mm
StemGiant Sport
SeatpostGiant Sport, 30.9mm
SaddleGiant Connect, Upright
PedalsMTB Caged



ShiftersShimano Altus
Front DerailleurShimano Altus
Rear DerailleurShimano Alivio
BrakesTektro Auriga, Hydraulic disc, 160mm
Brake LeversTektro Auriga
CassetteShimano HG20 11x34, 9-speed
ChainKMC X9
CranksetFSA Dynadrive, 22/32/44
Bottom BracketFSA sealed



RimsGiant Alloy, Double wall
HubsGiant Tracker Sport Disc, 32h
SpokesStainless Steel, 14g
TiresGiant Sport, 27.5x2.1

1904 Staples Mill Rd.
Richmond, VA 23230
(804) 658-2126

Thursday, February 5, 2015

2015 Giant Trance Advanced 27.5 1 Review — Pedal Power Bicycles

The Fastest Way to Conquer Technical Trails. Stay Smooth Through Roots, Rocks and Ruts.

This composite Trance Advanced 27.5 is light, agile, and built to go fast on technical trails. Developed with input from Giant’s champion enduro pros, the Advanced-grade composite frame is engineered specifically for 27.5, the ideal wheel size for all-around trail capabilities. With 5.5-inches/140mm of smooth Maestro rear suspension, as well as an OverDrive steerer tube and a PowerCore bottom bracket for steering precision and pedaling stiffness, it’s an all-around trail slayer that climbs as well as it descends. Frame details include internal cable routing, integrated downtube protection and ISCG-05 chain guide compatibility.

"So how does it stack up on the trail? From the get-go, this is a bike that lights up as well as a lot of race machines as soon as you brace against the pedals and give it some gas. The relatively long chainstay and sensitive start stroke keep the rear wheel locked onto the ground and the impact deadening, traction boosting 27mm wide carbon rims are easy to convert to tubeless.

While it sprints and floats over rises and jumps like a cross-country bike, the Trance comes into its own when things get fast and loose. The basic looking Giant dropper seatpost is the only component that looks a bit out of place, but it gets the seat out of the way fine and it takes most restrictions on technical line choice or entry speed with it."
 - Bikeradar

Don't take our word for it, come by today to check out our full line of Giant Bikes and much much more!

1904 Staples Mill Rd.
Richmond, VA 23230
(804) 658-2126