It seems the Fuji Gran Fondo 2.7 has made great choices in its finishing kit for this price point
The 2.7 is the lowest-priced of the three Gran Fondos. All three are based on the same frame — a very modern-looking carbon monocoque with a UD finish — and very sensibly all three, aimed at the mid-range, are relatively close in price and spec.
The 105-equipped 2.5 is £1,600 and the Ultegra 2.1 is £1,900. There’s nothing worse than a cheap-as-chips groupset on a super-duper frame and vice versa.
However, the Gran Fondo frame, which as the name suggests is for endurance riding rather than racing, is more super-duper than the mid-range price point suggests.
It’s made from high-modulus carbon-fibre, has a BB86 bottom bracket shell and a fork with a tapered 1 1/8-1.25in steerer and carbon dropouts. With its tall head tube and slightly longer chainstays it’s built for comfort rather than speed, but to keep it stiff for hard pedalling and climbing it has a huge, round-profiled down tube with a diameter that is pretty much the width of the BB shell.
The 2.7’s Shimano Tiagra 10-speed groupset includes the optional new long-cage (medium cage to the purists) derailleur than can climb up to a big sprocket with a maximum 30 teeth — the bike comes with a 12-30 cassette that paired with the compact 50/34 rings ought to allow any rider with any level of fitness to conquer any road climb.
The deviations are the Tektro calipers and Oval chainset with Praxis rings. These chainrings are something to be prized — quality cold-forged (rather than machined) pieces of Californian engineering.
Collar and cuffs are all present and correct with the stem, bar and seatpost all Oval, with a matching pocket square in the shape of the Oval seatpost and saddle.
The 2.7 is even more comfortable to ride than you’d expect and there’s an excellent sense of coherence in the component choices. The odd one out, the Tektro calipers, feel unexpectedly great. The riding position is considerably more upright than that of a race bike and the 2.7 doesn’t exactly accelerate like Quintana in a rainstorm — the sturdy Vera Corsa wheels could be partly to blame for this — but could Fuji be any more explicit in calling the bike ‘Gran Fondo’? Full marks for sticking to the brief.