Road bike + Panniers under £1000

squishd Posts: 2
edited August 2008 in Road beginners
I have a grand to spend on a road bike. Its main uses will be for commuting and taking out at evenings and weekends for some fast, fun cycling. However, I would also like the option to take it on longer treks along the highland roads.

As I understand it, the requirement for panniers rules out the Carbon frame option of the Focus Cayo 2008, which going by reviews, would be the road bike to have for the budget. (Still tempted to rashly discard the thought of panniers and buy it anyway! No no no, must be sensible here...)

The question is, what is the best road bike out there within the budget that would accept panniers?

(I was looking at the usual suspects - namely Specialized, Giant, Bianchi and Felt. I have also been recommended Ribble.)

Any advice welcome.



  • bice
    bice Posts: 772
    Road bike users on this forum tend to be snooty about panniers (which are brilliant for commuting, carrying spare clothes, picnics etc), and only the cheaper road bikes take racks and therefore panniers: Spesh Allez, Trek 1.2, 1.5 and, possibly, the Giants, which many here recommend as the best of the sub £500 bikes. Evans own brand bikes Pinnacle are another one, and Halfords Boardman

    I pondered this, but decided that a robust commuter and a decent road bike were a compromise on both. My commuters have all been basic bikes, and they take quite a bit of punishment (after a Trek hybrid, which broke, I am using a 30 year old Claud Butler 5 speed, with my wife's steel Raleigh hybrid as a back up - these are all fine for a 4 mile commute on London road and they can be left around without being nicked).

    The road bike I am getting, a Trek 1.7, is more for fun, the countryside and only occasional commuting.

    If I was a longer commuting distance, then I guess I'd go for a pannier-friendly road bike - though in fact that is what the Claud Butler is.
  • morrisje
    morrisje Posts: 507
    How about a Kinesis Racelight TK. Nice bike that can do everything
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    +1 for the Kinesis Racelight TK.
    I'm off to test ride one this afternoon; I'll let you know how it goes
  • blorg
    blorg Posts: 1,169
    I'd think over your needs again and not rule out the Cayo.

    You need a rack and panniers for multi-day touring. You do not need them for day rides. A rack/panniers is however very useful for commuting or any utility cycling- but if your commute/utility cycling is not very long you could get a second cheap "hack" bike for this use (in my view a "hack" is essential in any case so as to avoid getting your good bikes stolen.)

    As bice says, a bike that does everything is ultimately a compromise. I have both a Focus Cayo and a Van Nicholas Amazon built up as a light tourer and while the Amazon is a great bike and often touted as a "do anything" bike it is noticably heavier and not as much pure fun to ride (especially up hills or fast around corners) as the Cayo.

    Another option for some luggage carrying ability below the rack level would be a Carradice-type saddle bag and bar bag.
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    Spent two and a half hours at Epic. Painstakingly measured and set up on the bike. Test ride clinched it and deposit paid.
  • morrisje
    morrisje Posts: 507

    If you bought the Kinesis TK you won't regret it. I bought one last year fitted it with 9 speed 105, Open Pro wheels and mudguards. I wanted a winter bike that didn't feel like riding a metal gate. The TK has been great. You can feel the road but not too uncomfortable. Also nice and stiff for any hills.
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    It was the ride that impressed me the most. I was deliberately looking for rough bits of road on the test ride because I'd been expecting to feel a lot more road buzz than on my steel mtb with slicks, but for an aluminium frame on 23mm tyres it is pretty comfy.

    I have gone for 105 throughout, and asked them to fit the mudguards because it will be getting wetter (is that possible??) by the time I pick it up.