Aspero GRX Complete Bike
We like to speculate about the bike industry's direction — a lot. We'll be the first to admit, we're often wrong about where things are going, but one thing we can say with a strong level of confidence is that gravel riding is here to stay. It's blown up. What used to be an underground of lawless races littering the US is now an aggressively pursued sport, with race sign ups often filling up within just hours. Look at the Kanza, for instance, with its meager beginnings of 34 people at the 200-mile race just 13 years ago, now exploding to over 3,000 eager racers waiting at the starting line. Now, there's another side to gravel that hits our adventure nerve — if that's where your gravel dreams are fulfilled, then Cervélo's new gravel grinder is not for you. The Aspero GRX Complete Bike is a bike crafted with intent to be the fastest endurance rig capable of sending it through hundreds of miles of rough, mentally and physically challenging off road conditions that will at some stretch have nearly every rider questioning their sanity. In Cervélo's own words: the Aspero is built to haul ass, not cargo.
The Aspero is crafted with modern geometry that's aim is to combine comfort for the long gravel miles, with progressive fit to help you soar to the front of the pack. Trail is Cervélo's secret weapon in the world of geometry, and it comes into play on the Aspero to provide stability, regardless of the bike's size. It features a bit more trail than you'll find in road bikes, landing at about 62mm regardless of size, being that stability in rough conditions is a must, and each size uses a fork unique to its own geometry to keep trail consistent throughout sizing, meaning that every size of the Aspero provides an identical ride feel, which blows other rides out of the water that maintain the same fork for every size, and don't take the shorter riders so seriously. While some of this is achieved through a unique fork for each size, an adjustable fork offset lets you further tinker with things, enabling the bike to meet any rider's needs.
Outside of trail, the bike uses a moderate head tube angle at 72-degrees (size 52) to provide more stability than Cervélo's road steeds do, without going full-out slack into the realm of mountain bike geometry. This lengthens the wheelbase slightly to create a solid feel on loose descents and corners, but pairs up with a steep seat-tube angle for a nice perch through pedal-heavy sections. Since the bike is built to accommodate either 700c or 650b wheels, Cervélo crafts the fork with a built-in dropout that allows the geometry to stay identical regardless of wheel size. This dropout also enables you to fit huge tires for full cushion on rough terrain, with 700c options fitting most 42 tires, and 650b offering room for most 49's — though brand and tread can impact fit. Cervélo recommends leaving at least 4mm of space around your tires to accommodate clearance for the inevitable mud buildup that occurs during the lengthy miles of the Crusher or Private Idaho.
And speaking of mud and rubble, the Aspero comes equipped with protection you need when things get rough, muddy and gritty. It comes equipped with downtube protection that helps keep your frame, and its sleek paint job, free of scratches and dents. Since gravel races tend to be long, arduous, and typically ban all hand-outs (including the coveted water-bottle grab in road cycling, the Aspero comes ready to pack on as much water as possible, with three bottle mounts, plus a Bento mount on the top tube for bringing along the critical nutrition you need on 200+ mile rides. While we typically only see the Bento mount being used in Tri, with the demanding environment of Gravel we think it only makes sense to bring Bento to the grit, and we hope to see it take off across the boards. The Aspero utilizes the same bento mount as Cervélo's P5, and is compatible with all bento's built for the P5.
When it comes to carbon fiber layups, Cervélo is no slouch. It's engineers carefully and meticulously design their layups to maximize stiffness where its most important, compliance where you need a little comfort, and keep weight at a minimum. This particular model uses a C-level carbon, which uses ultra-high modulus carbon to damp jarring vibrations from mixed conditions, aiming to find a balance of static comfort and dynamic comfort.
This particular Aspero is completed with Shimano's GRX groupset that's purely dedicated to the gravel ride. When Shimano built the GRX after two years of listening, and countless hours of speaking with gravel riders internationally to determine exactly what was needed for a successful groupset that didn't simply toss road components on a ride with different demands. GRX combines enhanced lever shapes for better braking feel and leverage in rough conditions, plus a crankset that can be customized as either one-by or two-by. This build comes ready to roll two-by for endless gearing on steel climbs, and power on the descents. GRX's derailleur are built to be burlier than the road, so they can handle the dirt, mud, and rocks that you encounter on the long gravel haul. And as ever prevalent with Cervélo, the Aspero runs with the wide and stiff BBRight bottom bracket that doesn't flex under pressure when you're sprinting for the finish line.
- A gravel bike built with deliberate intent to dominate the race
- Steep seat tube and moderate head tube balance for comfort and speed
- Adjustable Trail in fork keeps geometry true regardless of wheel size
- Size-corrected geometry offers the same performance for every rider
- C-series carbon is stiff, light, and comfortable for endurance miles
- Compatible with both 700c and 650b wheel sizes for speed and comfort
- Top-tube Bento mount lets you add nutrition storage on long rides
- Internal cable routing allows for addition of dropper post
- Shimano's first gravel-specific groupset is designed for reliability in unpredictable conditions