The 5 Best Triathlon Bikes of 2013

These sleek time machines <i>might</i> just make up for your terrible swim
Staff Writer

The difference between first place and first loser in a triathlon can be as little as a second. And in an Ironman, where roughly 79.66% (don't want to be too specific here) of the distance is spent in the saddle, every ounce counts. Not only that, but so does every tiny innovation that cuts down on drag, makes a rider's pedalstroke more efficient and, over the course of 112 miles, conspires to put you a few bikelengths ahead of the competition for the same exact effort. It's pure, beautiful science, and these 5 time machines are the result of a few experiments that went very right. With no further ado, we present you 2013's top wind tunnel-tested, triathlete-approved bikes.

#5 Cervélo P2 Ultegra
The Cervélo P2 frame is nearly ubiquitous to triathlon and time trail racing, claiming wins around world. Its slippery profile, light-but-stiff design and flexible fit options make the P2 an easy choice for any racer that’s looking for a competitive edge, and the frame’s outstanding value leaves room in your budget to splurge on other components.
Type: Triathlon/Time Trial
Frame: Carbon
Weight: 17.26 pounds (2012)
$2,600; cervelo.com
—Kristin Butcher

BEST UPGRADE
#4 Focus Izalco Chrono 2.0 Di2
You shouldn’t have to worry about proper chain line or front derailleur trim when it’s time to put the power down, so Shimano’s Di2 electronic shifting system takes care of the technicalities while you pound through the cogs. The Focus Izalco Chrono 2.0 brings carbon frame technology and Ultegra Di2 components to a surprisingly low price point.
Type: Triathlon/Time Trial
Frame: Carbon
Weight: 19.51 pounds (55cm)
$4,500; focus-bikes.com
—Kristin Butcher

BEST ENTRY-LEVEL
#3 Kestrel Talon Tri

Yes, the carbon fiber Kestrel Talon Tri is $1,450. More than just a cheap bike with a fancy looking frame, the Talon Tri's parts spec is a smart mix of mid grade-components that balance light weight, durability and low cost. What's more, the frame is wind tunnel-tuned and built from a carbon fiber blend that creates a fast, comfortable ride.
Type: Triathlon/Time Trial
Frame: Carbon Fiber
Weight: 18.72 pounds (55cm)
$1,450; kestrelbicycles.com
—Kristin Butcher

BEST VALUE
#2 Trek Speed Concept 7.0

This SRAM Apex-equipped carbon road rocket from Trek offers all of the aero tech and component integration that you’d find on Trek’s high end offerings at a sub-$3,000 price tag. And all of that go-fast technology is coupled with super stable geometry so you can stay focused on making speed even when the road gets twisty.
Type: Triathlon/Time Trial
Frame: Carbon
Weight: 20.5 pounds (medium)
$2,729; trekbikes.com
—Kristin Butcher

BEST OVERALL
#1 Felt DA2
If you are 1% faster than the rest for 100 miles, you win by a mile. The Felt DA2 is all about helping you find that one percent. Shimano Dura Ace Di2 electronic shifting assures that a shift is never missed and the drivetrain runs smoothly. The slippery shape steals seconds from the air and the compliant frame helps you relax to go faster. It’s even a good value, despite the high price tag.
Type: Triathlon/Time Trial
Frame: Carbon Fiber
Weight: 18.16 pounds (56cm)
$7,749; feltbicycles.com
—Kristin Butcher

Like these bikes? See where they finished on our 32 Best Bikes of 2013 list.

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