Friday, 18 November 2016

review :The Thompson Pilot RC

 The Pilot -RC might not be the show bike in the Thompson range, its not aero, its not got a lot of built in compliance and its not a gravel grinder.. The Pilot-RC goes head to head with a lot the big brand bikes, Sure you get to spec and colour this bike, but if you build it in a 105 spec then it goes head to head with the big brands, For a small icon brand like Thompson then this should get kudos, but can it battle in a sea of other great spec road bikes in the £1500 market... So lets see how it stacks up...

First off we have the frame, as good as the parts might be, A quality frame should be the key area as this lets you upgrade in the future and will give you the ride quality. The pilot frame i got to try was flat black, It looked very simple and maybe lacked much hype at first glance, But up close you soon spot a lot going on with the profile of the frame, I liked the wishbone seatstay and the headtube /down tube have some nice sexy lines. The fork helps keep the price down, so its carbon legs but with an alloy steerer, For a weekend worrier this is no bad thing, So many steerers get damaged by riders over clamping down stems and cutting steerers then this is a good bit of future proofing and at a very small weight cost, Most the parts and wheels are Thompsons in house brand and all look and feel good, but some future bling would help drop some weight and add some style point.

On the road and you know your on a Thompson, that bb stiffness shines through and getting the power downs not a problem, The bike does not jack hammer you on the long rides but its not that soft either, This comes from a racey frame and the deep rims, The frame for sure feels like a top end carbon racer, Those wheels do add a little weight but get them rolling in the 20mph and above range and they hold speed so well! Plus they felt ok in cross winds as well. handling was sharp, crisp and sporty and lets you push your limits in the turns. I would be happy to race some crits on this bike, So if your looking at maybe going racing in the future or just want a sporty race feeling bike then this bike stands strong with any other in its price point, add custom colourways and spec options and it might just make your other options look a little less attractive and the custom colours also keeps the Thompsons looking look a lot less dated than brands with colour years.

Its a  race bike from a cult brand at a much lower price than you might think given just how good the frame is on its own. So future proof yourself with this if your thinking of a long term race bike/sporty mile muncher, as the frames worth some upgrades in the future what would only make the bike faster and more custom tuned.

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