When we think about the Ridley Helium SLX SRAM Red Complete Road Bike we find it’s a bit of a contradiction, almost like a mythological creature, managing to dial in nearly unmatched stiffness that tracks down the road with assertive control, and minimal weight that glides up treacherous mountain passes like a griffon taking flight. We're pretty confident that no actual fantastical critters went into the construction of this steed, and instead it's been a beast of technology, packing in a meticulous and tough carbon layup, and aggressive geometry that keeps you ready to attack at any moment — fitting for its build, which pairs Reynolds' Attack wheels that shed weight and keep you tracking with carbon fiber stiffness, and SRAM's Red groupset for crisp and precise shifting through the most grueling pitches.
You'll find a climb-happy personality from this elegant ride, starting with a blend of 60, 40, and 30-ton high-modulus carbon fiber. The result is a World Tour worthy frame that efficiently transfers power while shaving about 30g of claimed weight compared to the SL. The front end sees a slightly different curvature at the tube junctions, a small change that Ridley claims boost stiffness by 15% and translates into even snappier, more responsive handling when diving into switchbacks or pushing out of the final corner.
As with the SL, the SLX features rounded tubing emanating from the seat tube juncture, which slowly becomes box-shaped as it approaches the head tube and bottom bracket junctures. As Ridley puts it, this system creates a clean transition from stiffness to comfort. Supporting this ideology, the rear triangle blends the two shapes. The asymmetric, flat chainstays provide a stiff platform for power transfer to the rear wheel, while the ultra-thin seatstays create a vertically compliant ride quality without sacrificing rigidity.
- Soar up climbs on this featherweight road bike
- Technical roads are a breeze with race-ready geometry
- High modulus carbon layup drops grams from the SL
- Updated headtube junction shape increases stiffness
- Internal cable routing with molded internal channels for clean install
- Beefy bottom bracket shell efficiently transfers power
- Float up climbs with lightweight Reynolds Attack hoops
- SRAM Red groupset offers reliable, crisp shifting