This Colnago CX Zero Disc frameset is a rarity in the road cycling world. The platform was introduced to market with the disc-brake frameset coming out first and the rim brake version following. Colnago was ahead of the pack on this one, as they are with many trends. That disc braking is the method for stopping had a strong influence on design.
While you might not be able to tell the difference other than the brake mounts, know that there’s lots going on under the carbon. The fork tips, and the blades are designed differently than on a rim-brake fork. The lower legs are stiffer, and there’s much more aluminum under the carbon where the brake mounts to the fork. This is to absorb the extra heat that calipers generate under sustained braking. Likewise, the rear chainstays are also reinforced, and more aluminum is found under the carbon where the brake mounts to the frame. They expect you’ll run a 160mm front rotor and a 140mm rear.
This platform is a pro-level carbon-fiber bike made for long rides, hard rides, and rough roads. Endurance bike is a name for it, pavé pounder, even a gravel bike. As a result, compliance and stability are designed in. While the bike works great on rough roads, the benefits of the design work great on smooth roads as well. The road feedback is blunted and whatever lumps you ride over are absorbed by the frame. The result is greater comfort and less fatigue. Even with this factored in, the bike is still designed for throwing power down to the pedals, with incredible torsional stiffness thanks to the first-ever Colnago BB86 bottom bracket shell and the tapered 1 1/8" to 1 1/4" steerer tube which hides inside an oversized head tube that has replaceable cups for the headset bearings.
The lay-up and shapes reflect the forces that not only what heavy braking does by the hub, but how human power from above and the road from below affect the ride. As the intermediary to the road, the bike was designed to be ridden fast, with a confident, stable, comfortable mien. To maximize comfort, the chain stays are curved and taper dramatically as they move toward the dropouts, the seat stays are thin, and a 27.2mm seat post is used. To maximize efficiency, Colnago employs a BB86 bottom bracket, which allows for the chain stays to be set wider, to better resist pedaling forces and give more room for wide tires. Up to 28mm will fit.
This is a bike designed to last as long as the ancient roads that support classic racing. Cable routing is internal. And even with old roads being a favored playground, the shifting can be either mechanical or electronic, with the battery internal. All you need to do is swap the stops for plugs or vice versa.
The Colnago CX Zero Disc gets you an endurance ride that allows you to go beyond and feel better.