Why We Like The R5 Disc Road Frameset
Cervelo's R5 Disc Road Frameset is, in many ways, the racer's perfect bike. With aggressive race geometry and a stiff carbon design, the R5 is a frameset that's been ridden to victory in some of the toughest races, whether it be hill-top finishing or breakaway pack sprints. It simply possesses great all-around racing qualities.
Cervelo engineers a high level of stiffness into the R5. They layer support on at critical points to fight lateral and torsional forces while keeping the R5 lightweight enough to be considered a go-to frame for alpine stages and endurance KOMs. Placing such an emphasis on stiffness to weight ratio results in a bike that holds momentum well and has exceptional response when you pile on the watts.
Cervelo achieves this feat by building up the frame using unique carbon layups and construction techniques, allowing it to reduce the frame's weight while making it stiffer. It uses advanced engineering software like Finite Element Analysis (FEA) to understand better how each layer of carbon fiber is working and if it's being used properly. Its carbon expertise prescribes a specific frame layup by placing hundreds of individually cut plies of carbon in a mold in a specific order and orientation. By precisely cutting these plies, the frame can be made lighter while still achieving the desired strength and reliability.
We can't talk about a racing bike without touching on frame geometry, and the R5 gets Cervelo's Pro Road Fit, which is its lowest frame stack height, and it enables a more aerodynamic riding position. Cervelo claims that roughly 90% of drag comes from air resistance, so Cervelo heeded Team Sunweb's feedback and made the stack low to get as aero as possible on a road bike meant for 5+ hours of racing.
Returning Cervelo features include its BBright bottom bracket and Squoval Max tubing. It developed the wider BBright standard to increase stiffness by taking advantage of the real estate at the bottom bracket shell, seat tube, down tube, and chainstay. Additionally, it plays well with all major crank standards. Squoval Max tubing allows the design engineers to use the best attributes of a square and oval shape to improve the bike's ride quality while minimizing weight and maximizing stiffness. And while not as out-and-out aero as its S-Series lineup, its tube shapes, and internal cable routing serve as some aero tricks up its sleeve when you're driving off the front of the paceline. Also, that before mentioned rider position has a more significant impact on drag reduction than any amount of tube shaping or manipulation can achieve.
The 5-series frames are always Cervelo's top-tier offerings where the engineering and technology are at its highest, before trickling down to its other frames. As such, the R5 receives constant refinements through material use, tube shapes, and carbon layups to boost stiffness, improve ride quality, and drop grams. Compared to previous generation R5s, this version has a 44-gram reduction in aero drag, and it's 18 percent stiffer at the head tube and 26 percent stiffer at the bottom bracket, channeling all of your power directly to your rear wheel while descending with confidence.
Lastly, we love all of the small details that make a Cervelo a Cervelo. Things like its Future-Proof Cable Management system allows for full compatibility across mechanical, electronic, and hydraulic brake and derailleur systems. Its interchangeable cable stops snap into the frame and is easily swapped out by hand to accommodate different builds. And for those that prefer tried and true mechanical shifting, you'll appreciate its Reduced-Friction BB Guide, which maintains a consistent curve for each cable path that avoids extreme bends or kinks. The result is significantly reduced friction, more straightforward setup, smoother shifting, and longer service intervals. This particular model also comes with RAT thru-axles and compatible dropouts for fast wheel changes while racing or in the repair stand.
- Versatile carbon racer that focuses firmly on the win
- Disc brake compatible with Team Sunweb colors
- Squoval Max tube design to improve aerodynamics and on-road performance
- RAT thru-axles promote fast wheel changes
- Frame clearance for 30mm tires and a smoother ride
- Pro Road Fit enhances aerodynamic bike fitting on a road bike