2011 Cannondale SuperX HammerTime Cyclocross Bike – 14.5lbs of ‘Cross Fury
Weighing in at a feathery 14.5lbs (without pedals. 1,400g frameset), this is one of those bikes that just makes you laugh when you pick it up. It’s so light, it feels unreal, and yet here it is, completely spec’d out and ready to race.
As they’ve done with several other models, the new SuperX borrows from the frame technology Cannondale developed for the Flash hardtail mountain bikes. It uses their wide, flat SAVE stays to give a little vertical flex over the bumps, and the top tube flows around the seat tube and into the stays. On the SuperX, that junction flattens out a bit on the bottom to make shouldering the bike over barriers and up climbs a little easier.
Hit more for specs, pricing and photos…
The seat- and chainstays are wide and flat and designed to flex safely up and down by a few millimeters. The bottom of the top tube angles up as it meets the seat tube, providing a little nook for your shoulder.
Shown from the top, you can see how much wider they are than tall.Â You can also see the color-matched Fizik Tundra2 saddle and FSA post.
The SuperX frame is made of Cannondale’s BallisTec carbon fiber, just like on the Jekyll, so here’s the description from that bike:
Made in Japan, the ballistic carbon fiber used in the Jekyll is military spec, used in anti-ballistic equipment, and Cannondale has to sign off and account for every kilo of fiber. In fact, Cannondaleâ€™s Murray Washburn, global product marketing manager, said you could take a hammer and smack the frame hard and there would be no damage. One of their German engineers has even taken a hatchet and hit the downtime and it didnâ€™t break the fibers.
By using BallisTec fibers, theyâ€™ve created a carbon frame thatâ€™s lighter and stronger than aluminum and more dent resistant than steel.
Likely, if that carbon is good enough for a 6″ travel all (oops, “over”) mountain bike, it should stand up to the rigors of ‘cross just fine.
One more look at this section also shows the custom rear brake cable hanger.
And another good look at the stays’ flattened flex section.
Keeping the SuperX’s ride quick and efficient is a wide downtube that meets almost the full width of the BB30 bottom bracket shell. Unlike many ‘cross bikes that run all cable on the top tube and rely on a pulley mechanism to re-route the cable to work with bottom-pull (ie. all) front derailleurs, C’dale runs both derailleur cables along the bottom. This probably saves a bit of weight, but it could makes things a bit gritty if that cable guide gets gummed up with mud.Â This would be a good time for some Gore Ride-On sealed cables.
The seattube flares out at the bottom, adding contact area to further limit lateral flex. As we’ve learned, too, wider and fatter tubes usually translate into less total material needed and better dispersion of stress across the area.
Up front, the headtube is tapered 1-1/8″ to 1-1/4″ with a full carbon fork.
Check the big mud clearance the fork has around the tire.
What you just drooled over was the 2011 Cannondale SuperX SRAM Red, their new top of the line model.Â There will still be some CAAD9 aluminum cyclocross bikes offered, but they’ll be below two SuperX carbon bikes.
The SRAM Red version will retail for $7,499 US and spec’d as shown here (HollowGram SL cranks on the FSA Rings, Vittoria tubular 320tpi Cross Evo XM tires plus what’s on the list above). Sure, that seems crazy expensive for a bike that’s only ridden for about 1/3 of the year, but think of it this way: You could pay more for a road bike that’s not this light, and all you’d have to do is throw some regular tires on during the spring, summer and fall and ride the you-know-what out of it. You’d look so hardcore, too.
There’s also a Rival spec’d version for $3,749 that includes Mavic Ksyrium Equipe clinchers and weighs in at 16.7lbs. Aluminium CAADX models with come with either SRAM Rival or Shimano Ultegra, 105 or Tiagra builds, with complete bike prices ranging from $1,179 to $1,919.