In this comparison, I’ll dissect two popular bike models; the Cervelo Soloist vs Pinarello X.
I’ll compare their lineups, bike specifications, and suggested retail prices in USD, then discuss the carbon fiber technology ( and Pinarello TorayCa Carbon) and frameset technologies.
The goal is to give you a better understanding of Cervelo Soloist and Pinarello X to help in your decision-making.
|Cervelo Soloist||Pinarello X|
|Type of bike||All-rounder||Aero|
|Frame material||Cervelo carbon||Toray T600 carbon|
|Frame sizes||44, 48, 51, 54, 56, 58, 61||430, 460, 490, 515, 530, 545, 560, 580, 600|
|Groupset||Shimano, SRAM (12-speed)||Shimano, SRAM (12-speed)|
|Brakes||Hydraulic disc||Hydraulic disc|
|Price (USD)||$3,400 to $6,800||Check with local retailers|
The Cervélo Soloist is the latest addition to Cervélo’s road bike range. It sits between the Cervélo S5 (aero) and Cervélo R5 (lightweight), making it a versatile bike across all terrains.
It was first launched in the early 2000’s and before being refreshed with disc brakes, wider tire clearance (34mm), and extra comfort and compliance. Depending on the frame size, Cervélo claims it’s about 250g heavier than R5 and 250g lighter than S5.
One of the major differences between the Cervélo Soloist and other Cervélo models is the use of the new BBrighT-47 bottom bracket standard. Cervelo says it maintains the stiffness characteristics of the BBRight but simplifies the installation and replacement.
|Model||Frame material||Groupset||Wheelset||Retail price (USD)|
|Cervelo Soloist||Carbon||Shimano Ultegra Di2 (R8100)||Reserve 40/44||$6,800|
|Cervelo Soloist||Carbon||SRAM Force eTap AXS||Reserve 40/44||$6,800|
|Cervelo Soloist||Carbon||Shimano 105 Di2 (R7100)||Reserve 40/44||$5,200|
|Cervelo Soloist||Carbon||SRAM Rival eTap AXS||Reserve 40/44||$5,200|
|Cervelo Soloist||Carbon||Shimano Ultegra (R8000)||Fulcrum Racing 600 DB||$4,300|
|Cervelo Soloist||Carbon||Shimano 105 (R7000)||Alexrims Boondocks 5||$3,400|
The Pinarello X series was announced in February 2023 as a direct replacement for the popular Pinarello Paris.
It’s an endurance bike that focuses on comfort and compliance. The Pinarello X has a shorter, more upright geometry than the Pinarello Dogma F and F series. Pinarello claims the X series is 21% more compliant than the top-of-the-line, racy Pinarello Dogma F. The standout feature is the rear triangle, which has a Flexy Stay design to dampen road vibrations without resorting to mechanical means such as on the Pinarello K8 in the past.
|Pinarello X3||Toray T600 carbon||Shimano 105 Di2 (R7100)||Fulcrum Racing 800 DB|
|Pinarello X3||Toray T600 carbon||SRAM Rival eTap AXS||Fulcrum Racing 800 DB|
|Pinarello X1||Toray T600 carbon||Shimano 105 (R7000)||Shimano WH RS-171|
Pinarello X vs others
Cervelo vs Pinarello carbon fiber
Cervelo doesn’t publicly release information about the types of carbon fiber used on their road bikes.
From my observation of the current Cervelo bikes lineups, there are at least two carbon fiber grades used.
- Highest grade. Cervelo R5 and S5 could be using the highest carbon fiber grade of all the models. These are pure race bikes used by the pros and would likely have the best carbon fiber available at Cervelo.
- Mid-grade. Cervelo Caledonia and Soloist could be using a mid-level carbon and heavier fiber grade of all the models. These are endurance bikes that prioritize comfort over stiffness. So it’s not a surprise to see a lower-grade carbon fiber being used here.
Pinarello uses Torayca carbon in their bikes due to the material’s performance characteristics and the consistency of its quality. Toray’s manufacturing processes ensure a high level of control over the properties of carbon fiber, resulting in a reliable and predictable material.
Different grades of Torayca carbon are used in Pinarello bikes, which are distinguished by their moduli. The T in T1100, T900, T700, and T600 refers to Torayca, and the number denotes the grade of the carbon fiber.
A higher number equates to a higher grade of carbon, which in turn offers more stiffness and less weight, but also typically costs more to produce.
- T1100 carbon is the top Pinarello’s carbon offering. This high-end carbon fiber blend is created for the ultimate stiffness-to-weight ratio. Utilizing the highest quality carbon fiber available, Pinarello designs frames with T1100 Carbon for their flagship, Pinarello Dogma F series.
- T900 carbon is another high-quality carbon fiber offering from Pinarello, albeit slightly less stiff and lightweight than T1100. It’s used in the Pinarello F series road bikes, such as the F9 and F7.
- T700 carbon is a step down from the T900 but still offers a solid balance between weight, stiffness, and cost. It’s found in mid-range models, such as the Pinarello F5.
- T600 carbon is the entry level of Pinarello’s carbon range, is heavier, less stiff, and more comfortable. It’s used in the Endurance road bike series, the Pinarello X.
Frameset technologies and innovations
Cervelo Soloist and Pinarello X framesets incorporate advanced technologies to enhance their bikes’ performance and ride characteristics.
Here’s an overview of the technologies used in each bike model.
|34mm tire clearance||The 34mm tire clearance makes the Cervélo Soloist a versatile road bike, especially in fitting wider tires for rougher terrains.|
|BBRighT-47 bottom bracket||BBRighT-47, also known as T47A or BBCorrect is a relatively new BB standard and came to prominence when Trek used it in the Madone.|
The larger bearings increased stiffness while avoiding the common creaking and wear problems due to pool tolerance between frames and bearing cups. The design puts the non-driveside bearing inside the frame, and the driveside bearing outside. It uses T47 cups, which thread into the frame rather than being press-fit.
|Asymmetric frame||The Pinarello X series has an asymmetric frame that compensates for the unbalanced forces generated by the drivetrain. The right side of the frame is stiffer and stronger than the left side, to improve power transfer and efficiency. The asymmetric frame also enhances the handling and stability of the bike|
|TiCR||Total Internal Cable Routing (TiCR) is the state-of-the-art internal cable routing system that sets the standard across the whole bike industry. This system is versatile, accommodating both wireless and electro-mechanical group sets. |
TiCR completely conceals the cables within the bar/stem or integrated handlebar. This not only enhances the bike’s aesthetic appeal but also significantly improves aerodynamic performance and protects the cables from external elements.
|FlatBack Profile||The FlatBack Profile is a significant aerodynamic feature in the Pinarello X. Essentially, it’s a truncated aerofoil design that provides an aerodynamic advantage while adhering to the 3:1 rule set by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI). |
By using this design, the bike achieves excellent aerodynamic performance with minimal lateral wind resistance. This means less energy is expended fighting wind resistance, leading to greater speed and efficiency.
|Onda Fork||The Onda Fork is a distinctive Pinarello technology that has been around since 2000. This fork’s unique design offers precise steering abilities, stability, and a notable reduction of both longitudinal and lateral shocks. It does this by effectively absorbing road vibrations and dissipating them before they can reach the rider, resulting in a smoother, more comfortable ride.|
|Flex Stays||Flex Stays are designed to absorb road vibrations without reducing the responsiveness of the rear triangle. They are part of the Pinarello X series endurance bike, which is designed for riders who love cycling for pure joy.|
Flex stays work by having a curved shape that allows them to flex slightly when the bike encounters bumps or rough surfaces. This flexion helps to smooth out the ride and dampen the shocks that would otherwise be transmitted to the rider’s body. The flex stays also have a concave profile on the back, which improves the airflow and reduces the drag.