The Best Endurance Road Bikes

The bikes in this roundup range from around $6,500 to well over $8,000, and are among, if not the, top model in this category for each brand. As many share individual components and/or groupsets, these reviews focus mainly on the overall performance of the whole package (some specific content on the components may repeat where applicable).

Review Year
Best in Class
Overall Rating
Price
Name Overall Rating Ratings The Good The Bad Price
Scott Solace Premium
93
Best in Class
2016
Ride Quality 8
Power Transfer 9
Efficiency 9
Handling 9
Components 10
Wheelset 8

Best combination of stiffness & compliance

Top end carbon components

Excellent braking

Excellent all-around carbon wheelset

Some bounce in seatpost

Excess flex in front end

MSRP
$7,799.00
BEST DEAL
N/A
Trek Domane 6.9 Disc
92
Ride Quality 10
Power Transfer 8
Efficiency 9
Handling 9
Components 9
Wheelset 7

Titanium-comparable ride

Full Dura Ace Di2 group

Tubeless ready wheelset

Full carbon build

Highest price in test

Mediocre wheelset for the price

Over 17lbs

Very long head tube

MSRP
$7,999.00
BEST DEAL
N/A
Moots Vamoots DR, Build 2
91
Ride Quality 10
Power Transfer 8
Efficiency 8
Handling 8
Components 9
Wheelset 8

Outstanding ride feel

Handbuilt quality and attention to detail

Titanium more durable than carbon

Lacks race stiffness

High price-to-spec ratio

Bouncy Ti seatpost

MSRP
$8,799.00
BEST DEAL
N/A
Eddie Merckx Mourenx 69 Black Anthracite Red
91
Ride Quality 8
Power Transfer 8
Efficiency 9
Handling 10
Components 8
Wheelset 8

Stiffest, most responsive in group

Outstanding value for electronic shifting

Corners like an Indy car

Considerably heavier than others

Poor design for integrated seatpost clamp

Asymmetrical rims susceptible to crosswinds

MSRP
$6,499.00
BEST DEAL
N/A
Cannondale Synapse Hi-Mod Disc Red
90
Ride Quality 9
Power Transfer 9
Efficiency 8
Handling 8
Components 8
Wheelset 8

Great ride quality

Lightest in group

Light & strong rims

Bouncy ultrathin seatpost

Uncomfortable narrow & round bars

Excess flex in front end

MSRP
$7,560.00
BEST DEAL
N/A
Scott Solace Premium

While it’s clearly an endurance bike, the Scott Solace Premium is also relatively light and offers superior stiffness in key areas like the bottom bracket, downtube and fork for excellent acceleration and responsiveness. The combination means this bike can easily go from gravel grinds to road races without much sacrifice on either. We only found a few minor drawbacks including some instability in the front end  and some bounciness in the saddle, especially while climbing or at a high cadence.

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Eddie Merckx Mourenx 69 Black Anthracite Red

Eddy Merckx's entry in the Endurance Road category is the Mourenx69, named after Merckx's legendary solo victory in the 1969 Tour de France that finished in Mourenx. Itsgeometry is firmly in the endurance category, but the Bottom Bracket and head tube junctions are noticeably stiffer than the others. Whether all-out sprinting, standing up and grinding a steep grade, or diving into a corner faster than you might be comfortable with, the Mourenx handles it beautifully. It’s still noticeably smoother than more racy geometries, but it lacked a bit of the “float” feel of the others, especially on really rough terrain. And with the cost savings, Ultegra makes this bike an amazing value, especially for the more speed-needy.  

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Moots Vamoots DR, Build 2

As the only Titanium entry in our roundup, the Moots Vamoots DR was able to shine in the ride feel category—no composite can ride like Ti, with its buttery smooth compliance and vibration-sucking nature. And the handmade quality of this machine is immediately apparent on the road or in the garage! The Ultegra Di2 group always excels as a lower priced, but barely noticeable difference in quality, option to Dura Ace with smooth and precise shifts, even under load. While the Mavic Ksyrium wheels are incredibly durable and sufficiently fast and light. However this may not be the bike for criterium racesor crushing steep climbs. But for the majority of endurance riding, the ride can’t be beaten, and Ti’s legendary longevity means this bike will last.

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Trek Domane 6.9 Disc

The Trek Domane 6.9 Disc leans a bit on the comfort side, although most riders would never notice, and will instead appreciate the wonderfully smooth ride quality. Only serious racers, especially in technical courses, will notice the slight compromise in acceleration and handling on the Trek Domane 6.9 Disc. This bike floats over bumps and nasty roads almost as smoothly as a titanium or steel frame, but more responsively. It also climbs beautifully with a comfortable position and a highly responsive bottom bracket area. The only noticeable setbacks are the Affinity Elite wheelset, and while we love Dura Ace, it’s very difficult to justify the high price. 

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What is an Endurance Road Bike?

by: Last Updated:

While the latest hot trend in road bikes is the Gravel Road bike, that category wouldn’t even exist if not for the previous movement toward more comfortable yet high-performing road bikes called Endurance Road. The Specialized Roubaix, first launched in 2008, is widely credited for starting the Endurance Road category, which is defined by slacker head tube angles than their Road Race cousins, along with longer head tubes and chainstays/wheelbases. These characteristics are generally found on all Endurance Road bikes—there are other characteristics too, such as narrower, and/or shaped seatstays, skinnier seatposts, etc., but they can vary according to brand.

The results are a more upright position, which adds comfort especially to the neck and shoulders, and a smoother, more “compliant” ride, since the slacker angles and longer tubes allow more flex in the frame. Of course this comes with a compromise in terms of responsiveness and efficiency—that flex in the frames means less of the power input translates directly into motion. For all but the most serious riders and racers, however, this is more than made up for by the bike’s comfort and smooth ride.