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New Allied ALFA Balances Ride Quality w/ Some Serious Alpha Vibes

2023 allied alfa road bike shown with rider aboard
8 Comments

Aiming to kill your (pavement) quiver with a balanced blend of comfort, stiffness, aerodynamics, and ride quality, the newest iteration of the Allied ALFA road bike says it hits all the right notes.

Quick background: The ALFA was Allied’s original model, debuting way back in 2017 with *gasp* rim brakes, making it certainly due for an update. They quickly followed that up with the Alfa All-Road model with more tire clearance (which was eventually rebadged as the Echo), and both bikes quickly got disc brakes that year.

closeup details of 2023 allied alfa road bike

The new ALFA frame is a bit stiffer than before, using their “steering spine” layup and design of the fork, and they focused a lot of improving front end lateral stiffness. That comes from a different layup schedule, and also refined shaping and switched to a Mitsubishi MR60 carbon fiber, which they say is super expensive but has the best stiffness-to-weight ratio and is made in the USA and certified for aerospace use.

They call the handling “reactive, but not twitchy; fluid, but not sloppy.” It’s designed to be a race bike that can be ridden every day, for climbing, descending, and all things in between.

Those new shapes keep low-profile (smaller diameter) tubes, but give them a truncated NACA profile. They say the smaller diameter provides a smoother ride quality, and the shapes add “real world aerodynamics” in a variety of crosswind angles your likely to encounter on normal rides.

closeup view of stem and headset on 2023 allied alfa road bike

Unlike pretty much every other road bike that’s gone to an integrated internal routing system by using the Chris King Aeroset 3 headset (which runs the cables alongside the steerer tube), Allied feeds the brake lines through the stem and directly into the fork’s steerer, allowing them to use a smaller head tube profile and Chris King’s standard Dropset headset.

This requires use of their proprietary stem, but it means there’s no cables running through a hole in the upper headset cup, so it should do better at keeping moisture and muck out of your frame. They’ve been using this system on the Echo for a couple of years.

rear angle view of 2023 allied alfa road bike

It also means there’s not really room for shift cables, so the bike is only compatible with electronic drivetrains. But it does keep a simple, classic threaded bottom bracket. Framesets include their stem, and their seatpost, which they make themselves, in house, including the hardware.

rear angle view of 2023 allied alfa road bike

Tire clearance increases to for 32mm tires, and all complete bikes come set up tubeless with Orange Seal sealant inside.

Here’s a 0:22 silent video showing it off:

side view of 2023 allied alfa road bike

Framesets run $5,500, and complete bikes start at $8,225 and run over $14,000 before you start adding custom paint. It comes in six sizes (48 thru 61) and has a claimed frame weight of 820g (size 56) with a 320g fork.

AlliedCycleWorks.com

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Brian B
Brian B
8 months ago

I think bb drop needs to be discussed when it comes to handling. Too many twitchy road bikes these days have toe overlap and high bbs like older crit bikes. Drop the bb and you’ll gain handling

Dolan Halbrook
Dolan Halbrook
8 months ago
Reply to  Brian B

73 seems like a number that falls on the side of stability.

Brian B
Brian B
8 months ago
Reply to  Dolan Halbrook

With track bike wheelbase and high bb, 73 does not make a bike stable. But then I grew up and raced Italian steel so want my bike to rail corners, not get blow off line by a sneeze. And yes I have new Carbon super bikes.

Dolan Halbrook
Dolan Halbrook
8 months ago
Reply to  Brian B

I’ve never heard someone consider 73mm of BB drop a “high” BB on a pure road bike. But, to each their own I guess.

tertius_decimus
tertius_decimus
8 months ago
Reply to  Brian B

Agreed. But don’t forget rake and a byproduct of rake – trail figure. Trail is very important for stability or lack of thereof. A short wheelbase bike with long trail (60 mm) will descend like it’s on rails. A longer wheelbase bike with short trail (<55 mm) will be twitchy but less capable to drive into very tight corners at slow speed. My formula for perfect handling bike is Italian one: super low BB (80 mm), short wheelbase (995 mm for 60 cm frame), short rake/long trail (60 mm). Unfortunately very few bikes these days fall in that category.

blahblahblah
blahblahblah
8 months ago

ooofffff!

nooner
nooner
8 months ago

Try flying with a bike with all internal cables, wires, and hydro lines. it is an absolute NIGHTMARE to put in a bike bag, and required an emergency trip to a bike shop. How about when your bike fitter says you need a longer stem or lower/higher riding position? You have to run all new internal cables, wires, and hydro lines and this will cost bank. While i do love the sleek look of internal, i kinda wish this trend would go away. Oh yeah, this Allied looks pimp!

Patrick
Patrick
8 months ago

I am glad they shortened the seat tube from the previous version. They are sure committed to the vertical top tube before. The handful of these I have seen in person have minimal seatpost showing on the smaller sizes. I would *think* that combined with the placement of the seatstays is trading away comfort for looks. This seems like a step in the right direction.

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