Cube’s 2021 line-up introduces a number of new & updated mixed-surface off-road road bikes, with the refreshed Cube SL Road an interesting look at the classic hybrid or fitness bike. Instead of detuning a mountain bike they’ve reimagined a flat bar gravel bike as the perfect way to zip around the city during the week, then still being able to hit some dirt on the weekends.

2021 Cube SL Road alloy flat bar all-road & gravel bike

2021 Cube SL Road bike is an affordable, versatile alloy flat bar all-road & gravel bike, commuter

c. Cube NL

Cube continues to have a hard time figuring out where to place the new SL Road in their lineup, at one point dropping it at the bottom of their road race family, then also calling it a fitness or even urban mobility bike. But that’s probably just a testament to how versatile the bike can be. As anyone who has really latched onto the gravel bike craze of the last few years can tell you, you don’t only spend your time on gravel roads. Plenty more time is spent riding quickly on asphalt, with the occasional bit of singletrack thrown in for good measure.

2021 Cube SL Road bike is an affordable, versatile alloy flat bar all-road & gravel bike, city riding

Now for 2021, those people who want the versatility of a quick gravel bike, have another good multi-purpose, affordable bike option with the relaxed, upright position of a flat mountain bike bar.

SL Road – Tech details

2021 Cube SL Road bike is an affordable, versatile alloy flat bar all-road & gravel bike, non driveside detail

The core of the updated Cube SL Road is a lighter weight hydroformed aluminum frame welded from double-butted heat-treated alloy tubing, but without losing the versatility. The SL Road still features full rear rack & fender mounts (and even a kickstand), but now adds flat mount disc brakes & 12mm thru-axles, too. And now the SL Road gets a light full carbon fork with fender and low-rider rack mounts, as well.

2021 Cube SL Road bike is an affordable, versatile alloy flat bar all-road & gravel bike, tire clearance details

All models get spec’d with 700c x 40mm tires with plenty of clearance for a bit more – Schwalbe Little Big Ben city tires for the two cheaper builds and G-One Allround light gravel tires for the two top bikes.

2021 Cube SL Road bike is an affordable, versatile alloy flat bar all-road & gravel bike geometry

Geometry-wise, the SL Road is a bit steeper than Cube’s proper gravel Nuroad family, but it still gets similarly long chainstays for stability on and off-road.

2021 SL Road – Options & pricing

2021 Cube SL Road bike is an affordable, versatile alloy flat bar all-road & gravel bike, base SL Road

2021 SL Road

Hitting at affordability, four spec levels are available. Start at just 850€ for the most basic and affordable 2021 Cube SL Road with hydraulic Tektro brakes and a Shimano Claris 2x8sp setup at a claimed 10.8kg. The 1000€ 2021 Cube SL Road Pro upgrades to a higher-end, wider range Tiagra 2x10sp road compact group that actually makes it 100g heavier at 10.9kg.

2021 Cube SL Road bike is an affordable, versatile alloy flat bar all-road & gravel bike, SL Road Pro step-through Trapeze

2021 SL Road Pro step-through ‘Trapeze’

Both these two entry level models are available in the standard five size frame (XS-XL), plus a lowered toptube step-though frame in three small sizes (XS-M) for increased standover clearance.

2021 Cube SL Road bike is an affordable, versatile alloy flat bar all-road & gravel bike, SL Road Race

2021 SL Road Race

The two higher-spec models share the same traditional diamond frame & fork as the lower models, just without the step-through option. The 2021 Cube SL Road Race at 1200€ gets a 105 2×11 drivetrain and Tektro hydro brakes at 10.1kg, and the repetitively-named 2021 Cube SL Road SL upgrades to an Ultegra 2×11 for 1600€ at 9.7kg.

2021 Cube SL Road bike is an affordable, versatile alloy flat bar all-road & gravel bike, SL Road SL

2021 SL Road SL

Cube.eu/en

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Lyford
1 year ago

BB drop spec seems odd given the tire size.

Dug
Dug
1 year ago

Not so odd when lean angles and flat pedal use is considered.

Evan
Evan
1 year ago

what is the point of a 2x drivetrain on a commuter bike? entry level mtb 1x drivetrains are foolproof, cheap and have more than sufficient range

Ian
Ian
10 months ago
Reply to  Evan

They used to do this in s 1x, I have one. Don’t know why they stopped .

Chris Morris
Chris Morris
4 months ago
Reply to  Evan

Because, choice is key, Evan. Not everyone can ride with a single ring setup. No matter what anyone says, the versatility of a 2x set up has far more benefits, especially for someone like myself who has M.E. Besides, the whole idea of a bicycle like this is to be able to ride road and gravel, so the 1x set up is very limiting.

Tony
Tony
1 year ago

@Evan … they are marketing this as a gravel and adventure bike not a commuter bike. I’m currently shopping for a gravel bike on which to go bike packing. I realise it’s personal preference but I wouldn’t consider a 1x drivetrain.

Maurice Debets
Maurice Debets
1 year ago
Reply to  Tony

What bike did you end up with?

Chris Morris
Chris Morris
4 months ago
Reply to  Tony

Plus the fact that he mentions ‘entry level mtb 1x drivetrains’. But these aren’t mountain bikes, so I completely agree with you Tony.

Mikko
Mikko
8 months ago

Reach of the bike very short. Is it that they just put a flat bar on a grop bar frame? I’m trying to figure out how upright this bike is.