Cinelli’s Gazzetta Della Strada (not to be confused with the Gazzetta, which is a track-inspired fixed wheel bike) is described as being for ‘sporty urban’ riding – it’s the shape of a performance road bike, but has the fixtures and fittings of a commuter or light tourer, including a distinctive front rack.Cinelli have a long heritage and the Della Strada could hardly be more traditional in construction, short of actually being lugged. The frame and fork are both Columbus chromoly, and while TIG welding is a modern way of sticking tubes together, the Gazzetta has an array of endearingly old-school details. Features like the curvaceous seatclamp, diamond reinforcements at the bottle cage bosses, ring-reinforced head tube and down tube shifter bosses all hark back to a classic era.
That front rack very much plays to the idea of a multi-purpose bike too. It’s not designed for masses of luggage, but you can bungee a backpack to it to save wearing it and it’ll take a small pack of beer quite neatly. To carry more stuff, there are mounts for a rear rack and you could swap the little front rack for a low-rider and carry panniers at both ends if you wanted. You’re out of luck if you want to use a handlebar bag though – the Gazzetta has in-line cyclo-cross-style brake levers that get in the way.
The extra brake levers are an unusual feature on a road bike, but they have their uses. The Cinelli already has a fairly high front end, emphasising comfort and a good view of the road over pure performance, and the cross levers mean that you can sit even more upright while still having access to the brakes. It’s a useful position when trickling through traffic.
While the Gazzetta has many of the features – and most of the weight – of a touring bike, the geometry is very much performance-orientated. Yes, the front end is high, but the angles and lengths are really quite racy. It’s very adept when dodging through traffic and its nimble feel goes some way to offsetting the overall weight, though its heft is only noticeable on long hills. And you could liven it up considerably by replacing the wire-beaded Kenda tyres with something lighter when they wear out.
The Mystic Rats is a classic road/track bike weighing just 8.1kg. Built with Columbus tubing (fixie geometry), it’s ideal for the urban environment. Speed through traffic, whizz around street furniture, the Rats is the ultimate city bike.
The Bootleg is a niche brand of highly desirable street bikes originally conceived from a trend in Italy where top end bikes were covered in black tape to disguise their value.
This bike is built for urban use. Equipped with mostly Cinelli components, the Mystic Rats is a pleasure to ride. Quick, nimble and agile, it’s well suited for city life. The frame is manufactured from Columbus custom 6061 alloy and features a fixie geometry, single water bottle bosses, horizontal dropouts, and reflective black decals. The gearing featured is thanks to Cinelli and has 48 front chainring with a 17 tooth rear sprocket (flip-flop design).
For those you who aren’t familiar with a fixed gear bike, the basic rule of riding a fixed gear bike is whenever the bike is in motion, the cranks (and your legs) will go continue to go round. The rear cog is screwed directly to the hub with no freewheel although flip flop hubs are becoming more popular which give you the option of either a freewheel or fixed hub. Coasting is non-existent when riding a fixie which can be a bit of a shock to the system at first but can do wonders for building up leg power and strength. Henri Desgrange, founder of the TdF and early hipster is quoted as saying “I feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn’t it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailleur? We are getting soft…As for me, give me a fixed gear!”. But that was in 1902, where is the fixed gear scene over 100 years later?
The guys at Mash SF have really been pushing the fixie scene in the last couple of years. Originally hailing from the hilly streets of San Francisco these guys have been with the fixed gear scene since the start. The internet is strewn with various videos from their self-titled DVD film which never ceases to amaze. These guys live to ride with a no holds barred attitude to riding which has now become a global phenomenon.
Mash SF consists of artists, Graphic designers, photographers and bike messengers who have all come together through their love of riding bikes. The original collaboration between Mash and Cinelli saw the creation of a purpose built fixie frameset designed from the ground up. For those who think this new frame is just a new colour scheme you’d be gladly wrong.
The original Mash frameset has been further tweaked to produce a new geometry which plays to the preferences of the particular style of fixed gear street riding which has been brought to the attention of the masses by the Mash SF crew. With this frameset you will be able to recreate the trademark riding style popularised in the Mash SF DVD. This geometry will complement your fast switchbacks and scissor like movements and after a bit of practice you’ll be literally dancing in the streets on two wheels.
Cinelli have listened closely to what the guys at Mash SF had to say and have come back with a frame boasting an even steeper head and seat tube angle than previous Mash models also including a raised bottom bracket. The result is a bike that consists of precision response offering fast twitch steering yet is stable at high speed. A negative sloping top tube set the rider up in an attacking, aggressive and committed riding position. The geometry has been tweaked from the original Mash geometry to offer more manoeuvrability to suit the most challenging urban landscapes.
Built from the same high end aluminium as used by those planes you see flying overhead, Columbus triple-butted tubes offer the perfect compromise between weight and stiffness. With a two year warranty against manufacturer defect this should stand the test of time. A nice little feature is the frames geometry is stamped on the underside of the bottom bracket shell.
It’s not just the geometry that had a makeover either. Mash SF rider and graphic designer Garrett Chow has come up with a variation of classic Mash black and grey colour scheme using an angular toning style (reminiscent of a histogram, hence the name) between colours. This design is offset nicely with blue stealth Cinelli lettering which is set to get you noticed for all the right reasons.
Review by Probikekit.uk
Cyclocross has quickly become one of the most popular cycling disciplines in the last few years, which has resulted in a number of new cyclocross specific bikes being released. The Zydeco from Cinelli fits into this category and is the only cyclocross frame in the whole range from the Italian bike manufacturer.
As you would expect from a Cinelli bike, the frame on the Zydeco not only features impressive looks but is also expertly constructed as well. The frame uses strong and lightweight Columbus Zonal triple butted aluminum tubing matched to a carbon fiber-bladed fork. Cinelli are renowned for their frames and the Zydeco design also included inputs from the Cinelli Down Under racing team based in Belgium. Due to it’s cyclocross intentions the Zydeco features a longer wheel base for extra mud clearance and more stable handling, while a steeper head tube and a higher bottom bracket also aids the superior handling.
The Zydeco is certainly a very handsome looking frame, with the grey and yellow paint work complementing each other very nicely, making it almost a shame to drag it through the mud and gravel of a cyclocross course.
With it’s long wheelbase and relaxed seat tube angle the Zydeco should give a very stable and reliable ride no matter what terrain you throw at it. As a cyclocross specific bike though, there is no doubt the Zydeco will be most at home on gravel or rough dirt tracks but it is still capable of performing admirably on the road, just as long as you aren’t expecting the handling and speed of a race bike or sportive.
Being a cyclocross bike the Zydeco is sure to go across plenty of rough terrain but the aluminium frame should handle everything you throw at it and the carbon fibre forks should keep the feedback to a minimum. The Zydeco isn’t the best bike at handling sharp corners and severe twists and turns but it is more than capable on more sweeping turns and really comes into its own on the straights.
The Zydeco’s ability to handle rough and bumpy terrain should mean you can spend a prolonged period of time off-road without praying for some smooth tarmac to take away the pain. The Cinelli Zydeco would make a great choice as a dedicated cyclocross bike or for anyone looking for a winter training bike that is comfortable both off-road and on.
The Zydeco might not be at its very best on the road but it is still more than capable. It is on gravel and mud that the bike really comes alive though and the quality of the Cinelli frame should leave you wanting more at the end of a long ride.
Review by Notanotherhill.co.
Cinelli’s XCr frame is an interesting experiment that mashes together classic steel bicycle frame craftsmanship with new world technology.
From the classy side, the XCr features its choice of steel for a material, exquisite Italian welding and craftsmanship, not to mention, a classy design — including the seatstay-integrated seat post clamp. These features are juxtaposed by the incorporation of, arguably, the industry’s most advanced steel alloy, a progressive BB30 bottom bracket design and an integrated headset. The result, though not cheap, has an interesting, contradictory, alluring draw. One thing is certain: we’re not sure what type of customer is going to be attracted to this frame; like the frame itself, it’s ideal customer could be a mix of old school connoisseurs and cutting-edge techies.
The Cinelli XCr is built from Columbus’ XCr stainless steel tubeset. It’s the most expensive steel tubeset in the world, but it’s also the only seamless stainless steel tubeset available; Reynolds’ 953 is a welded tube. The biphasic martensitic seamless tubes are manufactured with high quantities of chromium, molybdenum and nickel to enhance its strength and resistance to cracking, especially during welding. The properties of the metal give it a high strength to weight ratio and allow tubing sections as thin as 0.4mm. Besides its strength advantage over other metals, XCr stainless steel is corrosion resistant. Columbus offers butted and double-butted tubes for the entire tubeset. It also offers a broad range of complementary stainless components, including the integrated cups and BB30 bottom bracket shell found on Cinelli’s XCr. Last year the Cinelli XCr won an award from Germany’s International Forum of Design.
As you’d expect, using the world’s most expensive steel tubeset — and welding it in Italy, no less — doesn’t produce an economically priced frame. Cinelli’s XCr costs $4,600 in its stock configuration. Cinelli does include headset bearings and a new Columbus carbon fork designed specifically for the XCr. The carbon fork has traditional curved blades that Cinelli believes better fits with the XCr’s aesthetic. The fork weighs just 350 grams and is claimed to be the lightest fork Columbus has ever produced. Other details including the frame’s high polish finish, laser etched graphics and titanium head tube badge highlight the ‘spare no expense’ attitude of the XCr.
Cinelli XCr: The XCr is the first steel bike we’ve seen that incorporates the BB30 bottom bracket design.
A mid-sized, 53cm, XCr frame weighs a claimed 1420 grams. Cinelli offers five stock sizes and, for a $500 up-charge, full custom geometry. At $5,100, Cinelli includes customization not only of the geometry and sizing, but all of the frame’s traits, so a traditional threaded bottom bracket, traditional head tube or even an integrated seat mast are within the scope of a custom project. Oh, and they’ll air ship it from Italy when it’s done, at no extra charge.
One thing is for sure, Cinelli’s XCr offers an interesting alternative to the current carbon trend that’s just as expensive, but guaranteed to be a unique addition to your local group ride.
Review by Velo News
The Saetta is ideal for the experienced road cyclist or advanced amateur looking for excitement and performance on a budget. Not a bad proposition at all in this day and age of tightened purse strings.
Frame & equipment: Elegant and well considered
As a firmly established brand with a loyal fan base and illustrious history in both bicycle design and racing, it’s no wonder Cinelli can comfortably stake a claim in the pantheon of cycling greats.
The Saetta is aimed at both new and experienced cyclists who might be on a limited budget but are still after high performance. The full carbon monocoque frame is available in five sizes ranging from XS to XL, and the frame features proportional tubing sections that increase with the size of the frame, maintaining consistency of ride and stiffness characteristics regardless of your build. A large pentagonal down tube anchors the entire structure, merging with a tapered seat tube that expands to the full width of the standard 68mm BSA bottom bracket. The seat tube’s asymmetric profile allows for maximum buttressing, yet ample room for the front mech. Fitted with a stout 31.6mm forged alloy seatpost, you would expect a firm, possibly uncomfortable ride, but you’d be wrong. An elegantly arched and narrow top tube morphs with attractively curved carbon seatstays, bringing it in line with the popular design brief of providing comfort and performance in the same package.
The usual bold graphical working of the Cinelli name continues, with large lettering matching the very beefy-looking down tube – the latter is a common sight nowadays as an ideal canvas for eye-catching design. It’s a firmly established look meant to turn as many heads as possible, and why not?
Cockpit controls come in the form of Campagnolo’s Veloce 10-speed Ergo levers, which have ergonomically ideal hoods and produce a satisfying mechanical clunk-click with every shift. There’s no vagueness, no missed shifts, and no aching fingers or wrists from repetitive strain. Campag Khamsin wheels are fast and robust, with sealed cartridge bearings and sufficient spokes to be reliable and keep maintenance easy. Vittoria Zaffiro tyres are ideal, with the small diamond file tread gripping more than adequately in all conditions, with enough ride height to take potholes and tarmac lumps with ease. A close-ratio cassette with a one-tooth difference from the 12 to the 18 meant an effective cadence could be easily maintained despite the rolling topography of our local test circuit. Cinelli’s own Vai forged alloy finishing kit rounds off the bike with robust and willing effectiveness.
Ride & handling: Lively and exciting
The geometry and handling lean towards the racing end of the spectrum. There’s a fairly expansive cockpit, with a wide bar and longish reach, while a monocoque carbon Columbus fork takes care of front-of-house business with gusto. Unusually, the classic road angles of 72.5-degree head and 73.5-degree seat don’t quite translate into ideal handling behaviour. Although very agile, it feels a little unstable, you’re perched like a pencil being balanced on your fingertip: it’s quite exciting, but it takes some getting used to.
Nevertheless, hunkering down in the drops to fight a crosswind or catch someone’s wheel is an all in a day’s work with the Cinelli – time well spent, and spent comfortably as well.
Review by BikeRadar.com
Very Best Of
The bike was introduced to me as being best suited for endurance and — dare we say — comfort rather than racing. Cinelli offer the Strato frame for those more interested in a pure race bike. Per Cinelli’s website, “the VBO has pure racing geometry” but I would argue the bike is more like a Pinarello Kobh or BMC Gran Fondo. The bike I rode was nicely, but not lavishly, appointed with Campagnolo Athena 11 and Campagnolo Zonda wheels. I think most buyers of the bike will go for Chorus or Record on the frame, but I must say the Athena 11 exceeded my expectations. The bike also featured a Cinelli Ram integrated bar and stem. There is just no way around it; an integrated bar and stem always makes the bike feel better.
It must be said that I simply loved the look of the bike. The Cinelli orange, green and yellow signature, paired with a black/white checker pattern just did it for me. For a company whose annual catalogue once featured the artwork of Wes Freed, (a cult favorite for his work with the band Drive By Truckers) I expected a stylish bike. Plus, Cinelli owner Antonio Colombo is known to be a bit of an art collector. So if we are asking if the VBO is stylish and beautiful, the answer is a resounding yes.
Now that I’ve established my love of the VBO’s aesthetics, I should also comment on the ride. The bad news — I only had the chance to put about twenty miles on the bike. The good news — those twenty miles were on the US Pro road race course and featured a long climb, a fun descent, flat terrain, rolling terrain, good roads and bad roads. One of the things that stuck me about the VBO was how light and stiff it felt beneath me while climbing. It seemed as though I could keep digging in for a little more and that little more would take me further than usual. So, a win for the VBO on power transfer.
After the ride, I weighed the VBO at the shop and was pleased to see the complete bike was under 16 pounds (without pedals, but with cages). Over all the various surfaces, the ride quality was smooth and I would say this bike will be kind to the rider looking to put in a lot of longer rides. My only complaint with the ride quality is that the front end felt a little twitchy on the flats (I did not notice it while descending). I believe this had more to do with the way I was set up up on the bike versus the bike itself. I think if I had taken the time to drop the stem a bit on the steer tube this would have been eliminated.
Review by Glory Cycles