First introduced in 1938, the Schwinn Paramount is one of those legendary names in road cycling. Last produced as a steel bike made by Waterford, the Paramount has seen quite a few changes over the years – as you would expect from a name that’s been around for this long. But the latest version opens a completely new chapter for the Paramount that coincides with Schwinn’s 125th anniversary – carbon fiber.
Using a mid-modulus ‘N Litened’ carbon fiber construction, Schwinn claims that a raw medium Paramount frame checks in right around 1000g. Not the lightest, but also certainly not the heaviest. Especially for a frame with a tall head tube, endurance road geometry, disc brakes, and clearance for 32mm tires.
Complete bikes will come equipped with tubeless 700c x 28mm Vittoria Rubino Pro tires with Graphene 2.0 compound, but it’s nice to see the 32mm tire clearance is there if you want it. Tubeless rims, valves, and rim tape are also included with the bike, but you’ll have to set it up tubeless and add sealant yourself.
Sold in five sizes, a 72.5° head tube angle and 73.5° seat tube angle (medium) combine with 415mm chainstays.
Frame details include a PF86 DUB bottom bracket, flat mount disc brakes, and a full carbon fork with tapered steerer.
While the frame has ports for every type of mechanical or electronic drivetrain, none of them are used for the SRAM Force AXS drivetrain so they come plugged from the factory (though you could remove the plugs if you wanted to fit a mechanical drivetrain). Brake routing is also internal through both the frame and fork.
Both front and rear axles feature the clever hidden lever we’ve seen on a few other bikes. It’s hidden when you don’t need it, and slides out when you do. Axle spacing is 12 x 100 up front and 12 x 142mm out back.
Overall, the Paramount has a smart build kit with quality parts all the way around. The bike’s product manager even spec’ed silicone bar tape with locking bar plugs because he prefers the feel.
Of course the build is highlighted by the new 12 speed SRAM Force eTap AXS wireless electronic group with a 48/35t crankset and 10-33 cassette.
Overall, the Paramount looks like an impressive bike worthy of the name – that’s also not too bad on the price. Selling for $3,299 complete, Schwinn will initially only sell these direct. And through the phone. Yup – no internet orders here. To order the Paramount, you’ll have to go old school and pick up the phone to dial 1-800-SCHWINN. The company is taking pre-orders now, with bikes expected to ship by June 20th.