Fuji Gran Fondo vs. Fuji SST Bike Comparison
When comparing the Fuji Gran Fondo and SST frame designs, it’s important to consider not only how the bike fits, but for whom the bike is intended. Both frames feature a tapered head tube, to improve stability and front-end handling, and an oversized Press-Fit BB86 bottom bracket to shave weight and add stiffness by way of a larger down tube and chain stays. However, the geometries of the Gran Fondo and SST vary greatly to address specific riding end goals. The Gran Fondo finds the perfect balance between wanting to go fast and stay comfortable, while the SST is meant to perform at the highest level.
Designed for Endurance Riders
The Gran Fondo is all about feeling comfortable. Using a longer head tube than a traditional race bike, about 10mm on a 55cm frame, the Fuji Gran Fondo creates a slightly more upright rider position in order to stave off upper body fatigue on longer rides. This relaxed geometry creates a more open field of vision to increase the rider’s safety. A longer wheelbase improves the bike’s stability and front end handling as well. This makes the Gran Fondo ideal for longer rides where comfort is as important as performance.
The Gran Fondo frame is made from Fuji's proprietary high-modulus carbon blend. High-modulus is an engineering term which defines the stiffness of fibers. Therefore, a high-modulus frame has a stiffer blend of fibers which results in less flex and better power transmission. The frame is further refined with a press fit bottom bracket shell and a tapered head tube. An oversized bottom bracket creates more surface area to attach the down tube and seat tube, thereby creating a very stiff pedaling area. The larger press fit design also allows Fuji to move the frame material around, thinning out the seat stays and strengthening the chain stays, which puts the carbon where it matters to you most. The tapered head tube stiffens the front end of the bike for better power transmission and improved handling.
Designed for Explosive Power and Maximum Speed
The SST is a sprinter’s dream. Light on weight and optimized for maximum stiffness, the SST platform was developed specifically to turn effort into power. A shorter head tube places the rider in a more race-ready, aerodynamic position to shave seconds and maximize torque during acceleration. The wheelbase is shortened as well to keep the SST compact and easy to maneuver in tight situations.
The patented Reinforced I-Beam (R.I.B) technology in the fork and down tube enhances stiffness for a more responsive ride and razor-sharp steering precision. Combined with a BB86 Press-Fit bottom bracket and Energy Transfer asymmetrical chain stays, it’s no wonder that it’s the overwhelming choice of pro and amateur cycling teams.
The Bottom Line
Fuji is innovation and technology driven. Their product development is based on real-world input from beginner’s to professional athletes. You can trust that both the Gran Fondo and SST will deliver as expected. The only question is what do you want your bike to deliver? If it’s unadulterated power and speed, especially when fractions of a second are the difference between winning and losing, then choose the SST. If you need your bike to perform at incredibly high level, but comfort is of equal importance, choose the more relaxed fit of the Gran Fondo.