the road bike I usually commute on was creaking so I decided to pull out the "tank" after not having ridden it for months. it's an all-aluminum, heavy Trek Soho with drum brakes and an internal gear hub.
just for old time's sake, I left the platform pedals on and wore my tennis shoes instead of getting all clipped in. I also had the basket on the rear rack with my lunch and clothes to change into. I was curious how much slower it would be than my road bike.
yesterday on the road bike with clips and no cargo, and having had the weekend off, I did the commute in 53:22.
this morning on the "tank", with tennis shoes and a basket full of stuff, I did the commute in 53:48.
I was stunned. I guess it's the engine, not the bike. And now I feel stupid for having plowed many hundreds of dollars into bikes, components, accessories, etc. It doesn't really make me faster. And if anything, the Soho is a no-maintenance all-weather commuter (also has a belt drive) whereas the road bike takes more than its share of TLC to keep going.