Product Review: Tifosi Andare Disc road bike
Received the Tifosi Andare Disc for testing this week, Tifosi was developed by Chicken Cycle Kit, designed by riders for riders. Tifosi is an Italian word meaning die-hard fans. Most of their bikes are based upon Italian bikes and design philosophy, so are very well proportioned and looks stunning. This Andare is sort of an entry level carbon bike that looks like their high end SS26 road bike, which easily is double the price of the Andare
The matt black finish shows off the carbon well, due to the use of UD (unidirectional) carbon fibre which eliminates the traditional weave. The lower frame joins at the bottom bracket, the wheel stays and lower forks are all glossed up with a bright red finish. Great contrast look, and feels like an evolution to what Pinarello and some other brands have done with colour contrasts. The internal cabling further makes this bike have a premium feel.
The finish look makes the Andare very sleek and mean looking, I really like the way the Tifosi brand name is on the down tube and cross bar in gloss black, however it is only decal stickers and not protected with lacquer on top.
So over time it may get scratched and peel off, but the finish on the decal seems very good so should last many years unless someone gets fidgety and start to pick at it on purpose.
The head badge is a similar flourish of gloss shapes to highlight the ‘T’ for Tifosi as the matt black. I particularly like this as it is an abstract way to make a head badge not many brands have tried such a way to make a head badge.
The bike structure makes it look a little aero, although not aggressively in geometry. The steerer has been cut conservatively to cater for different handlebar heights, pretty standard with 4 spacers (each 10 mm). The seat post is plenty long enough to cater for most height for this frame size.
Geometry and build:
The geometry of this bike gives the feeling that it is a long bike for a seat tube that is 52 cm the top tube is 57 cm, compared to my Genesis CdF the seat tube is the same, but the top tube is only 53 cm. Interestingly, with the CdF being a bit of a cyclocross bike, the geometry is rather upright and compared to the slicker Andare with slacker angles the overall reach is very similar, 39.8 cm on the Andare and 38 cm on my CdF. Overall, I think I ordered the wrong size for me as the lower centre of gravity and the longer reach makes it slightly uncomfortable. But that is only in comparison to my use of the Genesis.
The frame is constructed in UD carbon, meaning unidirectional which makes it hard to see a traditional weave. It is hard to discern whether this really makes the carbon fibre stronger, but it is a progression from traditional carbon fibre. This UD carbon frame is high modulus but on the entry level rather than the premium end of high modulus carbon fibre. This explains the price level of the Andare compared to it’s premium brother the SS26.
The groupset here is the Shimano Tiagra 10 speed setup, which is about right for this price of bike. 11 speed would have increased the overall price. Tiagra is brilliant really for entry level road bikes, it looks similar to 105 groupset and feels very similar too, more so these days compared to a few years ago. It does weigh more, of course there had to be some drawback otherwise they wouldn’t be able to have 105 sitting between Tiagra and Ultegra or just do away with Tiagra. The 10 speed is very nice, had to tweak it a little from delivery, to get back to sharp quick gear changes, the use of KMC X10 chain is good, I prefer the KMC chains to Shimano ones. The brakes are Avid BB7 disc brakes which are cable actuated and works well, after wearing them in.
The wheels are Weinmann XC180 Disc with some lovely 25 mm Schwalbe Durano P wrapped around them. These wheels are thru axle types, which sort of makes sense with disc brakes, as it makes the axle stronger to handle potential high torsional strain from the discs. Borrowed over from MTB tech, it is much welcomed as it is generally as quick as quick release skewers but taking the actual wheels off is easier in my opinion. The rear freehub is rather loud, if you like that sort of thing, does mean people will hear you coming if you are freewheeling, not such a bad thing at times out on the road.
The handlebars and stem are from One Race, which honestly I haven’t heard of before, but the components being alloy works as expected and the handlebar itself is a little on the thick side for me, but is comfortable. The seat post was also One Race, but the saddle was a Fizik Antares, which is pretty comfy.
I took the bike out after a quick setup from unboxing it, the bike was well packaged and was easy to reassemble. However I did have to readjust the Avid BB7 calipers as they were a little out of line.
My friend came to ride with me, he is a MTB rider who is getting frustrated with road riding using his MTB. So I offered my Genesis CdF for him to use as I tested the Tifosi Andare. We set off on a lovely summer evening and the weather was very warm. Not often I ride in evenings with my shorts on, but that evening it was needed. The bike felt long straight away, but not exactly uncomfortable, just different to what I am used to. That made me feel lower to the ground and therefore more secure, so not a bad thing really. I did set the seat forward to compensate a bit for that reach, did not impede my pedal stroke too. As a consequence, I felt the Andare was rather sharp on acceleration, as the stiffness of the carbon was showing that benefit compared to my usual steel CdF.
The ride comfort was not the same as steel, of course, but was not really jarring, it was smooth enough particularly with the 25 mm Schwalbe Durano tyres. The brakes were a little faded, but they are brand new and needed to be worn in a bit to become sharper, this will come with mileage.
Climbing up a long slope on the Andare felt easier than before on the CdF, could be the 10 speed as to my usual 9 speed gearing. But I suspect it is the weight, 8.78kg as oppose to my 11.73kg CdF, would certainly make a difference. When we eventually did a short but steep climb it was evident that a lighter bike is far easier to ride up a steep hill. On the downhills it felt fast, very fast and very stable too.
So first impression is good and the bike accelerated quick and felt strong and responsive. Lots of speed and fun to be had, I stayed a bit tentative as it is a new bike and didn’t want to push it too hard yet.
My friend was busy getting used to road bikes, but he still mentioned several times how stunning the Andare looked. Which is a good response from an entry level carbon bike. After 9 miles of riding the brakes were beginning to sharpen up and the whole bike was getting familiar to me.
This bike would suit someone who wanted to get into carbon bikes without spending the super bike prices to have a bike that looks similar and performs competently.
The Tifosi Andare carbon disc is now on sale click here to see full spec and buy.