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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

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Old 05-20-14, 12:14 AM   #1
brutus87
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2014 TREK 2.1 VS 2011 Specialized Tarmac SL2

Hello,

Im ready to ditch my old 10 speed Schwinn for something much newer and faster.

I was about ready to order a 2014 TREK 2.1 105 all round when I decided to check out a Specialized LBS, there they have a closeout 2011 Specialized Tarmac SL2 full carbon bike for the same price, $1300 USD. Both fit GREAT.

The question is which one would you choose and why?

2014 Trek 2.1 105 all around VS 2011 Specialized full carbon SRAM apex equipped.

I wonder why a bike hasnt been sold in 3 years and also is SRAM apex any good?

I tried searching for previous threads, but couldnt find any with these two bikes head to head. Thanks for your help and time.

Last edited by brutus87; 05-20-14 at 12:17 AM.
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Old 05-20-14, 01:13 AM   #2
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105 is better than Apex I believe. I prefer Specialized over Trek, so I would probably go with the SL2.
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Old 05-20-14, 01:20 AM   #3
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I'm not sure why you're asking us since you've already test ridden both bikes.
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Old 05-20-14, 02:45 AM   #4
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Welcome to the forums.

Quote:
Originally Posted by brutus87 View Post
The question is which one would you choose and why?

2014 Trek 2.1 105 all around VS 2011 Specialized full carbon SRAM apex equipped.
Bike companies spec their bikes by mixing and matching components to achieve a certain price point for customers - a mid-level frame with a low-level group or vice versa. Having said that, I wouldn't consider either bike to be low-end or with is spec'd with low-end components.

The Trek 2.1 is from the Madone series (Trek's top end) but is made from aluminum. The Specialized Tarmac Elite (also high-end in Specialized's line) is carbon.

Quote:
... is SRAM apex any good?
Apex is targeted mainly for sport riders, while 105 is a race-level group. Both groups are functionally good. There's no reason not to use Apex in a race aside from the weight.

For me, I'd choose the better frame (Tarmac). You will be upgrading the components to (relatively) better ones as you move along. But that's just me.

Choose the bike that speaks to you loudest - the one that makes you happy.
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Old 05-20-14, 04:41 AM   #5
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You're probably going to get a little more value from the Spec. SL2 vs. the aluminum Trek. Personally, I think 1300 for a 2011 carbon frame with Apex is a tad high for something that hasn't moved in so many years. That said the carbon frame Tarmac is a pretty nice ride…if it fits you properly.
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Old 05-20-14, 06:42 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Essex View Post
You're probably going to get a little more value from the Spec. SL2 vs. the aluminum Trek. Personally, I think 1300 for a 2011 carbon frame with Apex is a tad high for something that hasn't moved in so many years. That said the carbon frame Tarmac is a pretty nice ride…if it fits you properly.
Nothing has technologically changed with CF so dramatically since 2011, to drop this Tarmac out of contention. I think that $1300 is a great price. Of course, $1200 would be even better!

Last edited by WestPablo; 05-20-14 at 06:46 AM.
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Old 05-20-14, 07:49 AM   #7
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I use to ride a 13 Trek 2.1. One ride on a CAAD 8 and I knew I was not going to keep the 2.1.
Its just OK, but does not have that extra something to me.
Never ridden a Tarmac.
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Old 05-20-14, 08:52 AM   #8
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Assuming the fit on both is equally acceptable I'd go with the Specialized without a doubt. The Specialized may be a 2011 and a tad overpriced for a 3 year old bike but it has a much better frame and the slight component advantage on the Trek does not come close to making up the difference.
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Old 05-20-14, 09:08 AM   #9
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Tarmac
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Old 05-20-14, 09:19 AM   #10
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Assuming the fit on both is equally acceptable I'd go with the Specialized without a doubt. The Specialized may be a 2011 and a tad overpriced for a 3 year old bike but it has a much better frame and the slight component advantage on the Trek does not come close to making up the difference.
Yeah, I'd go with the tarmac as well. Full carbon, better components, fit is the #1 priority but if they both fit equally well the Tarmac would definitely be better (imo).
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Old 05-20-14, 10:49 AM   #11
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Without hesitation, I'd pick the Tarmac. Apex components are just as good as 105, it's just which shifters do you prefer? But the Tarmac has a frame 10x better than the 2 series.
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Old 05-20-14, 12:44 PM   #12
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Tarmac
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Old 05-20-14, 01:08 PM   #13
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Tarmac. Apex is just a heavier version of the old red/force/rival with less titanium, carbon, and aluminium bits.
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Old 05-20-14, 01:19 PM   #14
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Tarmac. Apex is just a heavier version of the old red/force/rival with less titanium, carbon, and aluminium bits.
which i believe is still ~150g lighter than 105
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Old 05-20-14, 01:22 PM   #15
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How are our opinions even relevant in his decision making? OP has ridden the bikes, knows how each bikes handles, and knows how well each component group works. There's no purpose to this thread.

Except to ask: what do random internet dudes think is the cooler bike? And that shouldn't have any bearing on your decision, OP. You have to live with the bike, not us.
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Old 05-20-14, 01:40 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by roadandmountain View Post
How are our opinions even relevant in his decision making? OP has ridden the bikes, knows how each bikes handles, and knows how well each component group works. There's no purpose to this thread.

Except to ask: what do random internet dudes think is the cooler bike? And that shouldn't have any bearing on your decision, OP. You have to live with the bike, not us.
It's funny how any aluminum frame for most people here, BUT the Caad 10, is disregarded as crap when compared to any carbon fiber frame. Comical really....
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Old 05-20-14, 02:10 PM   #17
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Thanks for the help, everyone.

I really liked the Tarmac, but I'm scared that it hasn't been sold, and has been sitting for 3 years. Is that common in the LBS world? Im sorry if my questions are basic, I am new to this.
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Old 05-20-14, 02:15 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brutus87 View Post
Thanks for the help, everyone.

I really liked the Tarmac, but I'm scared that it hasn't been sold, and has been sitting for 3 years. Is that common in the LBS world? Im sorry if my questions are basic, I am new to this.
Thanks for the clarification. I see where you're coming from.

Shimano is considered the higher quality component group within each pricing tier: better shifting, better braking and generally smoother. SRAM works well enough, but is not quite as refined.

The question is, what do you think of SRAM components? If you like it, you should buy.

I would negotiate a better price if possible; you could offer, say, $1150 or $1200. You have a lot of leverage on a bike that's been unsold for close to 4 years now. I wouldn't be surprised if they were to sell if you offered $1K. You're probably doing them a favor at this point.
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Old 05-20-14, 08:57 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roadandmountain View Post
How are our opinions even relevant in his decision making? OP has ridden the bikes, knows how each bikes handles, and knows how well each component group works. There's no purpose to this thread.

Except to ask: what do random internet dudes think is the cooler bike? And that shouldn't have any bearing on your decision, OP. You have to live with the bike, not us.
Lol, you know, I kind feel like your post is pointless, but I know that right after I write that, the OP will probably be one of those people who for some reason posts online just acting like he's leaning towards Thing A, then when everyone says Thing A is great, announce to everyone that he's doing Thing B.
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Old 05-20-14, 09:49 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brutus87 View Post
Thanks for the help, everyone.

I really liked the Tarmac, but I'm scared that it hasn't been sold, and has been sitting for 3 years. Is that common in the LBS world? Im sorry if my questions are basic, I am new to this.
Its pretty common for a shop to have a 2-3 yr old bike sitting there, that bike is definitely older than normal, but not unreasonable. Especially if its an odd size (very small or very large). If its a reputable shop they should be able to fix any unlikely issues you discover in the next few months.

+1 for Tarmac
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Old 05-21-14, 06:46 AM   #21
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Lol, you know, I kind feel like your post is pointless, but I know that right after I write that, the OP will probably be one of those people who for some reason posts online just acting like he's leaning towards Thing A, then when everyone says Thing A is great, announce to everyone that he's doing Thing B.
There is nothing more sacred than the practice of reverse psychology. To play "double" reverse psychology I now advocate a ally Trek vs. a carbon Spec.
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Old 05-21-14, 09:15 AM   #22
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There is nothing more sacred than the practice of reverse psychology. To play "double" reverse psychology I now advocate a ally Trek vs. a carbon Spec.
lol
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