Pinarello GAN RS: Maglia Nera
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The appeal of Pinarello is universal. Deep down, in every rider, is the desire for a new Pinarello. Many will never admit it, but get the lie detector out. It’s there. No other bike is as widely recognized as ultra-premium and the price reflects this—a Dogma F10 frame set is almost $6,000. The Dogma F10 also happens to be a hell of a race bike, but not many of us can afford to own one. Well, lean a little closer my friend and let me tell you a secret. Get a new GAN RS—it has 95 percent of the performance and 99 percent of the style—for less than 50 percent of the money.
At first glance, the GAN RS looks like an F8 because the molds are that similar. The signature Flatback down tube, integrated Onda fork and head tube, internal cable routing, asymmetry and unmistakable Pinarello silhouette are all present. The differences in the two bikes’ geometry are vanishingly small. The rear of the GAN RS is slightly longer, the position a tad-less aggressive, but still firmly in the race family. The major difference is material and layup. The Dogma F8 uses T1100 carbon as its highest modulus, allowing less material and thinner tubes. To try and replicate the same stiffness in a lower price, Pinarello uses simplified layup and a modulus that tops out at T900 carbon. The result is thicker tube walls and a lower stiffness-to-weight ratio. It is important to remember that only in 2017 and on a Pinarello can T900 carbon be considered anything less than bleeding-edge material.
On the road, you’ll be hard pressed to determine a difference. It lacks the hyper-liveliness of the F8 in the hills, where accelerations are from slower speeds and the GAN’s weight is a limiting factor, but it’s impressive nonetheless. Winding up a big sprint or laying down power to attack the group on the flats, the GAN RS might as well be an F8—the aerodynamics and the acceleration are both there. The stiff ride over big impacts is also there, but in some ways the GAN RS beats its big brother. With more weight and more carbon between you and the road, the GAN RS feels a bit more planted in the corners and a bit less frenetic over road chatter.
The Gan RS complete with Ultegra mechanical can be had for $5,000 and the Maglia Nero look is as handsome as any Dogma F8. It’s expensive for Ultegra, but it still says Pinarello on the down tube. Want to save more? The GAN S and GAN use the same mold, but with lower carbon modulus and component specs. $5,000; 7.7 kg/16.9 lbs (57.5cm); gitabike.com