Buyers Guide: Fuji Gran Fondo
If you were looking for the oldest bike brands, it might surprise you to know that Fuji would be among them. Fuji Bicycles has been helping riders conquer their mountains since 1899, and to this day they’ve continued to develop some of the most cutting-edge bikes on the market. The Fuji stable of products is enormous, with everything from high-end road bikes, to race-winning mountain bikes, cruisers, comfort bikes and everything in between. Obviously that's too much to deal with in a single article, so in this series we'll break down Fuji's road line up to help you decide which machine is right for you.
The Fuji Gran Fondo is for the rider who likes to go fast, and demands performance, but doesn’t mind sacrificing some speed to be more comfortable during a long, hard day in the saddle.
There are some who say that comfort and performance aren’t good bed fellows, but those people obviously haven’t seen the Fuji Gran Fondo. These bikes use the same blends of carbon fiber found in the Altamira and the SST, but with a geometry that won’t push your body to the limits. Thanks to a taller headtube and longer wheelbase, this is the bike of choice for days when you’re spending 8-10 hours in the saddle during a gran fondo or sportif ride.
There are several different models of the Gran Fondo to choose from, depending on your preferences, riding level, and budget. Fuji usually numbers their models beginning at either 1.0 or 1.1. The lower the number, the higher-end the bike. LE denotes a Limited Edition bike-- usually the result of a collaboration between Fuji and Performance Bicycles. SL stands for Super Light, the lightest bike in Fuji's line-up for that particular year
- Gran Fondo 1.1 C: This bike features 11-speed Dura-Ace 9000 for the serious gran fondo rider. Combined with a full C5 high modulus carbon fiber frame and fork, and Oval Concepts W535 aero wheels, this is a bike that is perfect for long days in the saddle.
- Gran Fondo 1.0: The Gran Fondo 1.0 features 10-speed Dura-Ace 7900 for those who demand the best. With a D6 high modulus carbon fiber frame, full carbon fiber fork and BB86 bottom bracket, this is a bike that perfectly marries performance and comfort.
- Gran Fondo 1.3 C: The Gran Fondo 1.3 C takes your ride to the cutting-edge with an Ultegra Di2 electronic drive train. C10 high modulus carbon fiber frame, full carbon fiber fork, and tall, tapered headtube make this a bike that puts gives you a performance edge without sacrificing comfort for speed.
- Gran Fondo 1.5 C: This bike features mechanical Ultegra for those who desire high-end performance but prefer mechanical shifting. The C10 high modulus carbon fiber frame is stiff and delivers excellent performance at a great value.
- Gran Fondo 2.0 LE: The Gran Fondo delivers cutting edge Ultegra components and a high-performance C5 woven carbon fiber frame all dressed up in a beautiful Italian tri-color paint job.
- Gran Fondo 2.1 C: The Gran Fondo 2.1 C incorporates the latest in technology with the all-new Shimano Ultegra 6800 11-speed group. The improved ergonomics and shifting performance perfectly complements the C5 carbon fiber frame for the rider who demands the best.
- Gran Fondo 2.5 C: If you’re looking for a great upgrade from your current bike, this is it. The Gran Fondo 2.5 C delivers a great ride with a C5 carbon fiber frame and the reliability of Shimano’s stellar 105 group.
- Gran Fondo 3.0 LE: If you’re looking for a new bike that won’t break the bank, then the buck stops at the Gran Fondo 3.0 LE. Developed as a collaboration between Fuji and Performance Bicycle, the Gran Fondo 3.0 combines the high-performance efficiency of Fuji’s C5 carbon fiber frame, a relaxed geometry, and the reliability of Shimano’s 105 group.
For more information about Fuji's other road bikes, click on the links below.
- If you're looking for an all-around race machine, check out the Fuji Altamira.
- Have a need for speed? Read up on the Fuji SST.
- Looking to race on a budget, or just getting into road riding? The Fuji Roubaix is an excellent choice.
- More interested in staying in shape and having fun? Check out the Fuji Sportif.
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