Since I started road biking in 2005, I have owned about 7 different bikes/frames. That might seem like a lot, but for a serious roadie that’s actually pretty low (I only own 1 road bike). I’ve changed bikes for lots of different reasons. Each one had it’s pluses and minuses. I can say that I liked all of them, but didn’t necessary love them. My last road bike purchase was November 2012. It’s now January 2015. That’s over 2 years. Huh? No new bike? Yep. I’m still rocking it 17,000 miles later. I can honestly say I love my Cannondale SuperSix EVO.
There are lots of various types of road bikes out. Some are meant to be aero, others super light…then there is the whole endurance/fondo trend. What I love about the EVO is that it’s a straight up road bike. It’s not the lightest, it’s not the most aero, and it doesn’t claim to be comfortable (Cannondale markets the Synapse specifically for this niche). It just performs well all-around. The EVO is an incredibly stiff frame that not harsh on the rider. It still comes in at ~950g for the standard frame I have, and you can get the even lighter Hi-Mod frame if you’re willing to spend the money. Remember, this is the bike that Peter Sagan has won tons of races on, not to mention 3 Tour de France green jerseys!
I bought the model that came with Ultegra Di2. I immediately swapped out some of the standard components with those I preferred. However, the original drivetrain is largely intact.
Frame = Cannondale SuperSix EVO – Size 54
Fork = Cannondale EVO
Crankset = Cannondale Hollowgram Si BB30 – 170mm
Chainrings = Praxis Works 50-34
Bottom Bracket = Chris King PF30
Cassette = Shimano Ultegra 6700 – 11-25 10 speed
Shifters = Shimano Ultegra Di2 6770
Chain = Shimano Ultegra 10 speed
Front Derailleur = Shimano Ultegra Di2 6770
Rear Derailleur = Shimano Ultegra Di2 6770
Brakes = Shimano Ultegra 6800
Handlebar = Ritchey Superlogic Evolution 40 cm
Stem = Ritchey WCS Carbon 110 mm
Seatpost = Ritchey Superlogic 27.2 mm
Seat = Specialized Toupe Pro
Pedals = Speedplay Zero (stainless steel)
Bottle Cages = Profile Design Elite Karbon Kage
Bar Tape = Lizard Skins DSP 1.8mm
Front Wheel = Dengfu 56mm U-shaped carbon rim laced to BHS hub with Sapim CX-Ray spokes (20, radial)
Rear Wheel (Training) = DengFu 56mm U-shaped carbon rim to PowerTap G3 hub with Sapim CX-Ray spokes (24, 2X)
I have to put the EVO on par with many of the other of frames that I’ve owned. Each has their nuances regarding build quality. The overall paint and finish was perfect. I also lucked out that the PF30 bottom bracket was perfect. My only gripe is that the paint near the bottom bracket started cracking after a couple of months. I touched this up with auto paint and have had no issues since. As far as the components, my only complaints were the FSA chainrings (which only lasted 7,000 miles) and the SRAM PF30 bottom bracket cups which died after 3,000 miles.
The one thing that amazes me the most is Shimano Di2. I’ve had no issues at all after 2 years. I’m still using the original components.
As I mentioned before, the ride of the EVO is very balanced. It’s stiff as you would expect for a race bike, but not too harsh. If you only do longer rides, I’d recommend the Synapse. It has a more slack geometry, and I’ve only heard great things from those I know who own one.
The thing I love the most about the EVO ride is the stiffness. I liked my old Diamondback Podium, but the EVO is even stiffer. It basically climbs like a billy goat. I’ve had several carbon frames, where I’d noticed some flex. However, I’ve never noticed any flex with the EVO, even when powering up 15% grades.
I’ve had no issues with my EVO, but had great warranty support from Cannondale for my Slice RS. There was a recall issue, which they fixed. I then noticed a small crack near the headtube. They promptly replaced the frame. One of the reasons for buying a bike through you LBS…:)
- Ditch the SRAM bottom bracket and get a Chris King. It will last longer than most of your bike
- The standard Cannondale bars, stem , and seatpost are nice if you prefer aluminum
- Get new chainrings if you ride lots of miles. The Cannondale crankset rocks, but the FSA chainrings suck
- I’ve gone through 2 derailleur hangers do to Di2. Order extras from your LBS
- Personalize your bike. Work with your LBS to dial your fit in and find out what parts work best for you
I’d love to get a lighter, more aero Cannondale frame that matches the EVO, but they don’t have one. I’ve looked at other manufacturers and haven’t been too impressed (at least compared to the EVO). It seems as if every bike brand has a standard frame vs climbing frame. I’m waiting for someone to develop the Holy Grail. Cannondale just hired Damon Rinard from Cervelo, which might bring this frame to fruition.
Overall, I’m super happy with the EVO. My tears are shed for where I’ve scuffed the frame. The marks are cosmetic, but for such a perfect frame I feel guilty.