Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Road Cycling
Reload this Page >

Tarmac vs Cervelo R3?

Notices
Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Tarmac vs Cervelo R3?

Old 03-20-12, 10:00 AM
  #1  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 56
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Tarmac vs Cervelo R3?

I am a specialized guy, owning a roubaix and a hybrid made by them. I was thinking about upgrading to a better tarmac (sl3 frame at least) and went into my lbs to check some out. The guy at my lbs (who sells specialized btw) is pushing me toward the cervelo r3, saying that is is a little more money but a much better quality and lighter than say the comparable spesh tarmac. Any thoughts? BTW the stock R3 56cm weighs in at 17.0 lbs without pedals. Do not know what the Rival Tarmac would be. Its of course not only about weight, this I know, but he saying that the feel, build, stiffness, acceleration etc etc are all better on the Cervelo R3. Thoughts?
mrfizzed is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 11:19 AM
  #2  
Senior Member
 
Jed19's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,224
Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 6 Posts
Why don't you go ride the Cervelo R3 and then make up your mind.

In the final analysis, it is you and you alone that can ascertain which of the bikes you like better than the other .
Jed19 is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 11:31 AM
  #3  
Senior Member
 
spazzkid's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Fontana, CA
Posts: 183

Bikes: Mercier Kilo TT, Specialized Tarmac

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
OP, you said you owned a Roubaix? The Tarmac has more agressive, race oriented geo than your Roubaix, which might handle a little quicker and stiffer, making you sit lower and more aero, which may or may not what youre looking for. I have not ridden an R3, but my understanding is that the geo is close to a Roubaix...
spazzkid is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 11:52 AM
  #4  
I like beans
 
eippo1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Meffa, MA
Posts: 3,336

Bikes: Tarmac Pro, Bianchi Zurigo, Raleigh Gran Sport, Fuji Del Rey, Ironman Centurion

Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by ****zkid
I have not ridden an R3, but my understanding is that the geo is close to a Roubaix...
Nope that is the RS, the R3 will be very similar to a Tarmac SL3. I say ride them both. The SL3 is a damn nice ride. Lighter and better quality would be debatable especially since Cervelo is known for specing their bikes with boat anchors for wheels.
eippo1 is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 12:20 PM
  #5  
Senior Member
 
spazzkid's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Fontana, CA
Posts: 183

Bikes: Mercier Kilo TT, Specialized Tarmac

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by eippo1
Nope that is the RS, the R3 will be very similar to a Tarmac SL3. I say ride them both. The SL3 is a damn nice ride. Lighter and better quality would be debatable especially since Cervelo is known for specing their bikes with boat anchors for wheels.
I stand corrected. Thanks for the info, sir!
spazzkid is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 12:50 PM
  #6  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 56
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
yes the tarmac sly is closer to the r3 as states...the rs is move like the roubaix as far as geometry goes. i did see the wheel set on the r3 was nt that good. so in the end it sounds like the tarmac is just as good if not better i guess huh? question for you guys....i have always ridden shimano groups....they say sram is lighter. this true?
mrfizzed is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 12:53 PM
  #7  
Senior Member
 
todayilearned's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 462
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by mrfizzed
yes the tarmac sly is closer to the r3 as states...the rs is move like the roubaix as far as geometry goes. i did see the wheel set on the r3 was nt that good. so in the end it sounds like the tarmac is just as good if not better i guess huh? question for you guys....i have always ridden shimano groups....they say sram is lighter. this true?
https://totalcycling.com/component-weights.html

SRAM is usually lighter.

The R3 and SL3 are great and you can't go wrong with either. Test them and see which fits better. If you're still stuck then just flip a coin...
todayilearned is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 01:03 PM
  #8  
I like beans
 
eippo1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Meffa, MA
Posts: 3,336

Bikes: Tarmac Pro, Bianchi Zurigo, Raleigh Gran Sport, Fuji Del Rey, Ironman Centurion

Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Sram is lighter and shifts fine. I have all 3 groups on bikes. They all work well - just differently.
eippo1 is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 01:08 PM
  #9  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Sauquoit, NY
Posts: 201

Bikes: 2014 FUJI Roubaix

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I have not ridden either, or even owned a bike from either company.

With that said, I vote for the Tarmac based on looks alone. That is a sexy bike. The velo, not so much.
jwill87ta is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 01:12 PM
  #10  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Quebec, Canada
Posts: 780

Bikes: Argon18 Gallium 2016, Trek Emonda SL6 Pro 2018, Salsa Beargrease

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Only tried the Tarmac, but like my Supersix better. Hate that curved top tube.

I'd certinly give the cervello a try!
generalkdi is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 01:17 PM
  #11  
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 225

Bikes: Sott Scale 29er, Specialized SL3 Roubaix, Colnago C59

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by eippo1
Nope that is the RS, the R3 will be very similar to a Tarmac SL3. I say ride them both. The SL3 is a damn nice ride. Lighter and better quality would be debatable especially since Cervelo is known for specing their bikes with boat anchors for wheels.
Be careful with that assumption. The head tube on the R3 is only 1mm shorter than the RS, but the stack on the R3 is actually 5mm taller than the RS, with 1mm less reach on the R3 (given the head angle, the fork is likely taller on the R3). That said, all things being equal the R3 might actually be a more Roubaix like bike than RS...

(the above geometry is based on a size 58 frame)
matthewk459 is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 01:21 PM
  #12  
Pug
High Modulus
 
Pug's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Madison, NJ
Posts: 663

Bikes: Cervelo R3, Ridley X-Night

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by mrfizzed
i did see the wheel set on the r3 was nt that good. so in the end it sounds like the tarmac is just as good if not better i guess huh?
Your LBS might work with you on upgrading the stock R3 wheels to something better.
Pug is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 01:22 PM
  #13  
Senior Member
 
Seattle Forrest's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 23,208
Liked 10,647 Times in 6,055 Posts
You should get an R3, because I have one, and love mine. And, who doesn't dream of riding a bike Forrest loves?

If that won't keep you happy years from now, then you should test ride both of them, and get the one you like most. But my taste is flawless, so this is something you'd only need to do if you were bored or something.
Seattle Forrest is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 01:25 PM
  #14  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,316
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
They're both great bikes. I haven't ridden the SL3 so can't comment. The R3 does come with boat anchor wheels, and the 2012 also has a boat anchor crank. If you're looking at the Rival version, it's pretty easy to get in the 15lb range by swapping the wheels and crank.
intence is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 01:35 PM
  #15  
Old & Getting Older Racer
 
Cleave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: SoCal
Posts: 5,343

Bikes: Bicycle Transportation: 2022 Hyundai Kona Electric, 2019 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid

Likes: 0
Liked 11 Times in 8 Posts
Hi mrfizzed,

It doesn't sound like you're racing and you don't say what kind of riding you do or how much you ride over what kind of terrain. That kind of information would be helpful in providing recommendations. The Tarmac SL3 and R3 are race bikes. That doesn't mean that you have to race on them but the handling and ride are commensurate with their geometry. A few years ago I raced on an R3 for a year and it had about the most comfortable ride of any race bike I've owned. I currently racing on a SuperSix Hi-Mod and it is pretty comfortable for a race bike but noticeably less comfortable than the R3. I have two teammates that have the SL3 and they like them but I've asked them specifically about comfort and they say that it's pretty typical for a race bike (i.e. relatively harsh).

You can build the Tarmac or the R3 into a sub-15 lb bike. Regardless of how light you build a bike you still have to pedal it, but I really like the feel of a light bike -- especially when I'm climbing out of the saddle. It inspires me to ride harder.

I have a clubmate who owns a Cervélo RS and he likes it a lot. It is almost as light as the R3 and has the same seat stay configuration, but the geometry is a little more relaxed than the R3.

BTW, the sales person's comment about Cervélo quality has me perplexed. I had the opposite experience. The frame seems to be constructed well enough but there was a lot more "waviness" in the carbon layup than I expected and the front derailleur hangar was painted badly and was attached to the frame with what looked like two aluminum pop rivets. All of this is cosmetic but it did make me wonder about ultimate durability.
__________________
Thanks.
Cleave
"Real men still wear pink."
Visit my blog at https://cleavesblant.wordpress.com/
Lightning Velo Cycling Club: https://www.lightningvelo.org/
Learn about our Green Dream Home at https://www.lawville.org/
Cleave is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 01:45 PM
  #16  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Far beyond the pale horizon.
Posts: 14,518
Liked 1,478 Times in 1,023 Posts
Originally Posted by Cleave
I have a clubmate who owns a Cervélo RS and he likes it a lot. It is almost as light as the R3 and has the same seat stay configuration, but the geometry is a little more relaxed than the R3.
Just to be clear, the R3 geometry was changed recently. The RS and the R3 are now very similar except the RS has a longer rear triangle.
njkayaker is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 02:16 PM
  #17  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: NYC
Posts: 624
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
If popularity is any indication, both bikes are winners by popular demand. SL3's & R3's (and Cannondales) are by far the race/performance framesets I see most frequently. I ride an SL2/Red and my bike weighs in at 15lbs. Picked the SL2 over the R3 after riding both and haven't looked back.

Last edited by rushbikes; 03-20-12 at 02:22 PM.
rushbikes is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 03:03 PM
  #18  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 3,685

Bikes: S5 VWD & SL-7 S works Red.

Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I would look at a Cervelo S5, yes you are just a club rider but if the aero lets you go futher or faster it is still good.

Some people don't like the looks but to me being different is better and if it allows you to be faster all the better.

I own a R3SL and have rent a SL3 on vacation. They are both good bikes but the aero advantage of the S5 is better than anyone else at the moment.
v70cat is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 04:23 PM
  #19  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Costa Mesa, CA
Posts: 270
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by njkayaker
Just to be clear, the R3 geometry was changed recently. The RS and the R3 are now very similar except the RS has a longer rear triangle.
Hit it dead on. Just because the RS may share similar geometry with the headtube/stack/reach being almost equal, the shorter chainstays on the R3 will make it handle more aggressively. Having said that, I've never ridden an R3 myself, but I do own an RS.
sosojeffcc is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 04:38 PM
  #20  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Far beyond the pale horizon.
Posts: 14,518
Liked 1,478 Times in 1,023 Posts
Originally Posted by sosojeffcc
Hit it dead on. Just because the RS may share similar geometry with the headtube/stack/reach being almost equal, the shorter chainstays on the R3 will make it handle more aggressively. Having said that, I've never ridden an R3 myself, but I do own an RS.
Not many people need the "more aggressive" handling. I suspect people often associate "twitchy" with "fast".
njkayaker is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 04:47 PM
  #21  
Senior Member
 
Seattle Forrest's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 23,208
Liked 10,647 Times in 6,055 Posts
Originally Posted by sosojeffcc
Hit it dead on. Just because the RS may share similar geometry with the headtube/stack/reach being almost equal, the shorter chainstays on the R3 will make it handle more aggressively. Having said that, I've never ridden an R3 myself, but I do own an RS.
They feel like they respond identically. If you give one an input, and give the other the same input, they'll respond the same way, purely by feel. You can pull off more aggressive turns on the R3, but the difference isn't very much.

The RS does a better job of smoothing out the road buzz.

I've owned both, and put thousands of miles on each.
Seattle Forrest is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 06:28 PM
  #22  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 3,685

Bikes: S5 VWD & SL-7 S works Red.

Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Come on twitchy what bs.

People just talking nothing real. Any good road bike handles just fine and over 50% is weight transfer no steering.
v70cat is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 06:31 PM
  #23  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 3,685

Bikes: S5 VWD & SL-7 S works Red.

Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
The basic design of bike has not changed in over 50 years, the components are the same and if the frame material is the same the difference is hardly measurable, what a forest.

Last edited by v70cat; 03-20-12 at 06:39 PM.
v70cat is offline  
Old 03-20-12, 11:13 PM
  #24  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Jersey
Posts: 219

Bikes: Cervelo R3

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by eippo1
Nope that is the RS, the R3 will be very similar to a Tarmac SL3. I say ride them both. The SL3 is a damn nice ride. Lighter and better quality would be debatable especially since Cervelo is known for specing their bikes with boat anchors for wheels.
Cervelo spec's low-end wheels because buyers in the higher end price range typically already own a nice set of wheels or prefer to choose their own. I prefer this choice. Use your boat-anchors for training, and your nice wheels for racing. I prefer it this way.
eric01 is offline  
Old 03-21-12, 05:56 AM
  #25  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 56
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
@todayilearned, this is diected for you....
first thanks for chiming in on ny discussion on the forum about my dilemma between choosing the tarmac vs the cervelo. i noticed you have two 2012 bikes, both road and both very good and fast. can i ask why? i have a 2011 roubaix and others have told me i am crazy for wanting to buy a tarmac as well while others have insisted i should get a tarmac because it will make me a bit faster and easier to go a bit faster, especially on the bulk of my rides (most of my rides, i wold sy 65% of them are 10-20 miles. Very few, at least as of now are over 25 miles, more suited to the roubaix. thanks for your help.

Originally Posted by todayilearned
https://totalcycling.com/component-weights.html

SRAM is usually lighter.

The R3 and SL3 are great and you can't go wrong with either. Test them and see which fits better. If you're still stuck then just flip a coin...
mrfizzed is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Your Privacy Choices -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.