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Challenge Venture CLR 2.0 700C Wheel Size Unisex Road Bike at Argos for £179.99
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Challenge Venture CLR 2.0 700C Wheel Size Unisex Road Bike at Argos for £179.99

£179.99Argos Deals
33
Posted 3rd Nov

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Nice decent looking bike
£100 off the original price
Been on the hunt for one for a while.
Plenty of collection stores

Seems like a good deal
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Can't see much difference between the £150 and £180 model apart from Microshift drivetrain on the cheaper bike which to be honest is pretty competent. Only a marginal weight difference. I'd be tempted to spend the £30 difference on a freehub equipped rear wheel and 7 speed cassette to make the bike shift more crisply, be stronger and need less maintenance plus more importantly make the bike faster than the £180 model. The £250 bike is worth the upgrade though with a Claris drivetrain that is the first good drivetrain in Shimano's road bike range and will be faster due to the higher gearing and loses about a 1kg of weight compared to the other two bikes despite having the heavier Claris drivetrain and freehub. All these road bikes look great value though. If I was buying I'd probably go for the £150 model and upgrade the rear wheel purely as I'm not keen on CF forks of the £250 model I'd probably be the unlucky guy who gets forks with a manufacturing fault like a void and I'm not great at avoiding potholes. I personally feel the Carrera Virtuoso is a better road bike though, you get the mainly Claris drivetrain combined with strong steel forks so an ideal everyday commuter bike that is very strong. However its about 1kg heavier than the £250 bike here probably due to the use of steel rather than carbon fibre forks. Also worth looking at Go Outdoors and Decathlon to see their road bike range which can be good value however I think Decathlon don't offer anything decent anymore at this sort of price point. Last time I looked it was the Triban 100 with very limited low end gearing which would be much slower on the flats and much harder up hill than these bikes.

The geometry of the frame looks very relaxed which is ideal I would think for general use, commuting etc and a great introduction to road bikes and perhaps those with a beer gut who can't really ride with their arse higher than their head. That geometry looks unisex too with a top tube that drops significantly towards the seat tube for easier mounting of the bike.

The bikes were configured by the bikeradar staff although I don't think they ever reviewed the bikes because of a conflict of interest and also probably slight shame of being involved with budget bikes as most of their readership are probably bike brand snobs. They seem to have done a competent job though as the bikes look worth upgrading over time with a pretty competent looking frame for these price points. Personally I think they should have gone for a freehub and cassette on the middle price bike though.
33 Comments
At this price you can't go wrong to be honest. If the velominati have an opinion I am sure we'll see it...
31_39 inside leg
Heavy, but a good value starter bike. I imagine the £150 one is best avoided.
Edited by: "LadyEleanor" 3rd Nov
LadyEleanor03/11/2019 09:26

Heavy, but a good value starter bike. I imagine the £150 one is best …Heavy, but a good value starter bike. I imagine the £150 one is best avoided.


Looking to get my first road bike cos hills round near me are killer on my mountain bike. What sort of weight should I look for?
Bike looks like it’s ready to take off.
drewmoores103/11/2019 09:44

Looking to get my first road bike cos hills round near me are killer on my …Looking to get my first road bike cos hills round near me are killer on my mountain bike. What sort of weight should I look for?


For £300 you 'might' just find as low as 10.5 or 10kg. For hills, it is gearing that matters more than weight, unless you are a competition cyclist where both matter. No doubt for steep hilly areas you will need to change the cassette or even chainset.
Edited by: "LadyEleanor" 3rd Nov
Can't see much difference between the £150 and £180 model apart from Microshift drivetrain on the cheaper bike which to be honest is pretty competent. Only a marginal weight difference. I'd be tempted to spend the £30 difference on a freehub equipped rear wheel and 7 speed cassette to make the bike shift more crisply, be stronger and need less maintenance plus more importantly make the bike faster than the £180 model. The £250 bike is worth the upgrade though with a Claris drivetrain that is the first good drivetrain in Shimano's road bike range and will be faster due to the higher gearing and loses about a 1kg of weight compared to the other two bikes despite having the heavier Claris drivetrain and freehub. All these road bikes look great value though. If I was buying I'd probably go for the £150 model and upgrade the rear wheel purely as I'm not keen on CF forks of the £250 model I'd probably be the unlucky guy who gets forks with a manufacturing fault like a void and I'm not great at avoiding potholes. I personally feel the Carrera Virtuoso is a better road bike though, you get the mainly Claris drivetrain combined with strong steel forks so an ideal everyday commuter bike that is very strong. However its about 1kg heavier than the £250 bike here probably due to the use of steel rather than carbon fibre forks. Also worth looking at Go Outdoors and Decathlon to see their road bike range which can be good value however I think Decathlon don't offer anything decent anymore at this sort of price point. Last time I looked it was the Triban 100 with very limited low end gearing which would be much slower on the flats and much harder up hill than these bikes.

The geometry of the frame looks very relaxed which is ideal I would think for general use, commuting etc and a great introduction to road bikes and perhaps those with a beer gut who can't really ride with their arse higher than their head. That geometry looks unisex too with a top tube that drops significantly towards the seat tube for easier mounting of the bike.

The bikes were configured by the bikeradar staff although I don't think they ever reviewed the bikes because of a conflict of interest and also probably slight shame of being involved with budget bikes as most of their readership are probably bike brand snobs. They seem to have done a competent job though as the bikes look worth upgrading over time with a pretty competent looking frame for these price points. Personally I think they should have gone for a freehub and cassette on the middle price bike though.
Difference is massive if you look closer. The Microshift is a bonus, them being fine but check the wheels!
Can any bike experts tell if this has all the mounting points for a traditional pannier rack? Shame there isn't a manual online to check.
LadyEleanor03/11/2019 10:53

Difference is massive if you look closer. The Microshift is a bonus, them …Difference is massive if you look closer. The Microshift is a bonus, them being fine but check the wheels!


I can't see the difference on my screen, what's the difference they both look like fairly basic 36 spoke double wall wheels although I have noticed both look to have schrader valves which I wasn't expecting on a road bike so the rims have a larger valve hole. The cheaper bike has painted spokes compared to stainless steel on the £180 bike not a deal breaker for me. I can only really see the front hubs but they look the same on both bikes. Stainless steel spokes are softer than steel painted spokes but don't rust if the paint is removed but are more likely to break and the painted spokes maybe galvanised before painting (although unlikely at this price point but possible). I'd prefer stainless steel but painted spokes wouldn't put me off a bike. I know from past experience you can cut stainless steel spokes easily but steel spokes take some force to cut with basic cutters. Maybe steel spokes are ideal for heavier riders perhaps.

I think Microshift brifters are as good as Shimano Tourney brifters perhaps not in feel but in long term reliability and durability however I've not tried them myself I've only read that in a few reviews where they were very pleased with the long term reliability of the Microshift brifters. A bit clunky but dependable.

Wait: I've just had a second look and can see the £150 bike has a solid rear axle where as the £180 bike has a quick release on the rear. I would never want a quick release with a freewheel as that massively compromises strength of the rear wheel. A freewheel is unsupported and relies on the axle for strength so would not want a hollow tube supporting the wheel. Fine for freehubs as the wheel is supported by the frame dropouts but not a freewheel.
Edited by: "bonzobanana" 3rd Nov
Mowbli03/11/2019 11:21

Can any bike experts tell if this has all the mounting points for a …Can any bike experts tell if this has all the mounting points for a traditional pannier rack? Shame there isn't a manual online to check.


Looks like both the £150 and £180 bikes (not checked the £250) have rack mountings. There is only one mounting on the rear dropout so if you fit mudguards as well they will need to be compatible with your rack mounting, probably a bit of careful bending will sort any problems. However bear in mind sometimes there are minor differences between the catalogue images and the actual bike you receive but they are seen on the images. I.e. a later batch removed the mountings. If you check the images you should see a screw just to the right of the rear brake on the seat stays and on the rear dropout a small thread above and left of the rear axle of the wheel.
Gonzo pointed out a other potential problem with the £150 bike. Some spokes snap. None stainless spokes easily snap.
The quick release on this bikes means there is more chance of it using a cassette rather than a freewheel. There will be an unwanted freewheel on the none quick release £150 bikes' cheap wheels.
Edited by: "LadyEleanor" 3rd Nov
The geometry is mad though, why the huge top tube angle still if it gets you to work for 180 quid for a year that’s cheap commuting
Flipping eck is the bike any good or not!
Budget is everything! Sub 10kg for hills is probably a must. Consider all the things you'll want to take with like spare tube etc and this all adds up in terms of weight. Remember the wheels and tyres play a huge part given they're are what is in contact with the ground and the bike. If you can spend money here it will mitigate much of the issues with the frame. Personally carbon is not for me and I think many aluminium bikes are best value for weight but that's me. Look at decathlon who also have good bikes with good wheels.
Wheelset is perhaps the biggest consideration when buying cheap bikes, or indeed any bike really. In my opinion it is the single best upgrade you can make. I have an barely used (maybe 8 or 10 dry miles) set of the highly regarded Mavic Aksium Clincher Wheelset (rim brake) boxed with new Continental Tyres in the attic that I would sell someone. With the tyres these are worth about £200 or more new, but I'd let them go with the tyres for half that as I'm not using them. I should advertise them on Gumtree or something but I'm too lazy haha. If it helps someone out and you're in the South Wales area then let me know.
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Edited by: "Dekard97" 3rd Nov
Msx9803/11/2019 13:08

Budget is everything! Sub 10kg for hills is probably a must. Consider all …Budget is everything! Sub 10kg for hills is probably a must. Consider all the things you'll want to take with like spare tube etc and this all adds up in terms of weight. Remember the wheels and tyres play a huge part given they're are what is in contact with the ground and the bike. If you can spend money here it will mitigate much of the issues with the frame. Personally carbon is not for me and I think many aluminium bikes are best value for weight but that's me. Look at decathlon who also have good bikes with good wheels.


The rider can save 20kg in getting fit. As to wheel upgrades, 36 spoke wheels also have advantages.
Or you can save 2.5kg by spending £300+ more.
drewmoores103/11/2019 09:44

Looking to get my first road bike cos hills round near me are killer on my …Looking to get my first road bike cos hills round near me are killer on my mountain bike. What sort of weight should I look for?


I'm gonna second the other responses here, gearing is the main factor for hill climbing. I've got a rigid bike that weighs half as much as my full suspension ebike, but the ebike climbs better even when the motor's off because its lowest gear feels one or two gears lower than the rigid bike's lowest. It really comes in handy when I've got a tonne of shopping on the rear rack.
CampGareth03/11/2019 17:08

I'm gonna second the other responses here, gearing is the main factor for …I'm gonna second the other responses here, gearing is the main factor for hill climbing. I've got a rigid bike that weighs half as much as my full suspension ebike, but the ebike climbs better even when the motor's off because its lowest gear feels one or two gears lower than the rigid bike's lowest. It really comes in handy when I've got a tonne of shopping on the rear rack.


That's great. As a complete amatuer, how do I know what the gearing is?
drewmoores103/11/2019 17:26

That's great. As a complete amatuer, how do I know what the gearing is?



I can't see the gearing on their website but when looking at specs on any bike the gearing is based on two things. The cogs at the front the bigger they are the harder it is to pedal and the cogs at the back the smaller cogs are harder. So you're looking for something with a good range at both the front and the back. For a beginner look for 50_34 as the two large chainrings at the front and a range at the back of 12-32 for the cogs at the back which can range from 9-12 cogs that would make up the block of cogs at the back. Hope that helps.
Msx9803/11/2019 17:50

I can't see the gearing on their website but when looking at specs on any …I can't see the gearing on their website but when looking at specs on any bike the gearing is based on two things. The cogs at the front the bigger they are the harder it is to pedal and the cogs at the back the smaller cogs are harder. So you're looking for something with a good range at both the front and the back. For a beginner look for 50_34 as the two large chainrings at the front and a range at the back of 12-32 for the cogs at the back which can range from 9-12 cogs that would make up the block of cogs at the back. Hope that helps.


The numbers for the cogs relate to the number of teeth for each one.
Edited by: "Msx98" 3rd Nov
drewmoores103/11/2019 17:26

That's great. As a complete amatuer, how do I know what the gearing is?


There are four numbers to look out for that factor into gearing. All but one of them are missing from the argos listing so let's look at this Halfords one as an example: halfords.com/web…001

The factors are chainring size (cogs attached to the pedals), sprocket size (cogs attached to the rear wheel) plus crank length and wheel size.

The smaller your chain ring is the easier hills will be but the lower your top speed will be, which is why that Halfords bike has three chain rings, the biggest being 42T (T = Tooth) and the smallest being 24T. Some road bikes come with 50T and 34T for instance.

The bigger your sprockets are the easier hills will be, but the lower your top speed will be. Some mountain bikes come with 50T to 11T sprockets on the rear while road bikes can come with 28T to 11T. That Halfords bike has 32T to 11T.

The longer your crank arms are the easier hills will be, but for most bikes this is set at 170mm. Think of this as how much leverage you can take advantage of to turn the pedals. Leverage comes up again when you think about the size of your wheels. The bigger your wheels the harder hills will be, but for most bikes this is set at 700C or about 29". If you found a bike with 20" wheels and the same gears as another bike it would be easier to climb a hill.

If you put all these details into a gearing calculator you can figure out more concrete stats like how fast you will be going in a given gear, or be able to compare dissimilar bikes: sheldonbrown.com/gea…tml
LadyEleanor03/11/2019 14:27

The rider can save 20kg in getting fit. As to wheel upgrades, 36 spoke …The rider can save 20kg in getting fit. As to wheel upgrades, 36 spoke wheels also have advantages.Or you can save 2.5kg by spending £300+ more.


With respect, when you're propelling yourself forward, I'm pretty sure that's not how the physics works in this case, and to clarify, I mean that losing a couple of kilos on a bike has a larger effect than that much weight loss.

That being said, losing weight, when overweight, is always good, but as someone who used to be 16.5 stone and is now 8.8stone, although you may feel more agile, it certainly is quite different to losing weight on the object that you are propelling.
LadyEleanor03/11/2019 12:12

Gonzo pointed out a other potential problem with the £150 bike. Some …Gonzo pointed out a other potential problem with the £150 bike. Some spokes snap. None stainless spokes easily snap.The quick release on this bikes means there is more chance of it using a cassette rather than a freewheel. There will be an unwanted freewheel on the none quick release £150 bikes' cheap wheels.


Whose this Gonzo you are referring to? Not a cassette on the bike it is clearly a Shimano freewheel but the £150 bike appears to have a non-Shimano freewheel possibly sunrace or similar. Most people prefer to have a Shimano freewheel but Sunrace are probably just as good but there is a risk the freewheel is a worse brand than Sunrace its hard to tell from the photo. It will likely be Sunrace though as Sunrace and Microshift are the same company. One good thing about the Sunrace freewheels is they actually resemble cassettes from a distance but Shimano freewheels typically have a galvanished/copper coloured inner cogs with an outer black cog so are easy to spot.
easyphones03/11/2019 18:58

With respect, when you're propelling yourself forward, I'm pretty sure …With respect, when you're propelling yourself forward, I'm pretty sure that's not how the physics works in this case, and to clarify, I mean that losing a couple of kilos on a bike has a larger effect than that much weight loss.That being said, losing weight, when overweight, is always good, but as someone who used to be 16.5 stone and is now 8.8stone, although you may feel more agile, it certainly is quite different to losing weight on the object that you are propelling.


It's an easy thing to test just add 20kg dead weight to your bike, maybe some in a rucksack and the rest somewhere else on a high end bike and then compare it to a bike that is only 2kg heavier without those additional weights. See which feels better. In my experience Lady Eleanor is right and the less fat you have on your legs the nippier and more responsive the bike feels. As ever though its hill climbing where it counts/hurts most so there I think 1kg lost of body weight is as good as 1kg lost in the bike itself. On the flats its a different argument and physics. I've ridden very heavy bikes and actually preferred them on my commute, they were more stable in the wind and the larger heavier tyres were less effected by ice, water and potholes. There is a lot to be said for a strong durable bike with additional grip. Like anything different bikes suit different people and these Challenge bikes look good for the money. At around £400-450 though I'd start looking for a Giant Contend Claris from the previous year its a sub 10kg bike brilliantly manufactured and still a budget bike that most can afford. A £180 road bike is not a bad option though to get you started especially if where you cycle there is a high risk of theft.
bonzobanana03/11/2019 19:42

It's an easy thing to test just add 20kg dead weight to your bike, maybe …It's an easy thing to test just add 20kg dead weight to your bike, maybe some in a rucksack and the rest somewhere else on a high end bike and then compare it to a bike that is only 2kg heavier without those additional weights. See which feels better. In my experience Lady Eleanor is right and the less fat you have on your legs the nippier and more responsive the bike feels. As ever though its hill climbing where it counts/hurts most so there I think 1kg lost of body weight is as good as 1kg lost in the bike itself. On the flats its a different argument and physics. I've ridden very heavy bikes and actually preferred them on my commute, they were more stable in the wind and the larger heavier tyres were less effected by ice, water and potholes. There is a lot to be said for a strong durable bike with additional grip. Like anything different bikes suit different people and these Challenge bikes look good for the money. At around £400-450 though I'd start looking for a Giant Contend Claris from the previous year its a sub 10kg bike brilliantly manufactured and still a budget bike that most can afford. A £180 road bike is not a bad option though to get you started especially if where you cycle there is a high risk of theft.


But that's just not how it works!!! You're comparing the work involved in pushing 20kg of additional mass that is a part of you (perhaps muscle, perhaps fat??) versus attaching weight physically to it. Compare it to walking, does losing 10kg weight make you feel that much nippier? No, perhaps not, but that 10kg rucksack that you used to carry it each? Perhaps, yes!
idontbyte03/11/2019 12:48

The geometry is mad though, why the huge top tube angle still if it …The geometry is mad though, why the huge top tube angle still if it gets you to work for 180 quid for a year that’s cheap commuting


I think its a combination of really relaxed geometry and a unisex frame. Clearly designed to be very easy to ride with a more upright riding position plus easier to mount the bike. It's clearly designed around beginners to road bikes I think however it also states road and trail optimised tyres so there is a bit of a gravel bike thing going on here too. Looks like the tyres could be 700x28. That would also explain the angled top tube. A poor man's Giant Anyroad.
easyphones03/11/2019 19:46

But that's just not how it works!!! You're comparing the work involved in …But that's just not how it works!!! You're comparing the work involved in pushing 20kg of additional mass that is a part of you (perhaps muscle, perhaps fat??) versus attaching weight physically to it. Compare it to walking, does losing 10kg weight make you feel that much nippier? No, perhaps not, but that 10kg rucksack that you used to carry it each? Perhaps, yes!


There is no magic wand to carrying extra weight, if you are climbing a hill any additional weight requires the same force to get it up the hill whether that weight is the bike or the rider or the luggage etc. Thats with everything else being equal. The wheels having reduced rolling resistance might help a bit but that is mainly on the flats not going up a hill. You make it sound like a 100kg rider who reduces weight to 80kg is only 80% as powerful but likely if the weight has dropped due to exercise could be significantly stronger even with the reduced weight.

I've seen videos of overweight people on high end road bikes easily get beaten by much older lighter people on cheap road bikes and I've seen young people with cheap bikes easily beat older people with high end road bikes who were much lighter but much weaker. Bikes don't make that much difference compared to rider age and fitness. It's nice to have a high end bike but the difference between cheap bikes and high end bikes is often hugely over stated. Yes significant if you are racing but insignificant if you are commuting where a hugely more expensive bike only gives you a 10 second advantage and the cost of that difference is both financial and reduced safety.

Here is a video comparing a entry level road bike and a Boardman bike which was about £2,500 but a similar bike with a big brand could be £4,000 or more. Same rider different bikes. You compare that to the difference in times between different riders on strava etc and that difference is huge.

Also if you are riding for fitness why even worry about a small amount of extra weight anyway if that means the exercise level is slightly more and the weight loss is slightly improved. If riding once each week on your bike consumes 2,000 calories but on a lower end bike is 2,100 calories that extra 100 calories over a year is 5,200 calories so close to a extra kg lost. So you've lost a little bit more weight and gained a huge amount of extra money. I just don't get the obsession with high end bikes for everyday use, something like Claris is ideal for a general purpose road bike, cheap to buy and cheap to replace when it wears out.


youtube.com/wat…Quw
Edited by: "bonzobanana" 5th Nov
Msx9803/11/2019 08:01

At this price you can't go wrong to be honest. If the velominati have an …At this price you can't go wrong to be honest. If the velominati have an opinion I am sure we'll see it...


Looooool!! Velominati!!!!
LadyEleanor03/11/2019 14:27

The rider can save 20kg in getting fit. As to wheel upgrades, 36 spoke …The rider can save 20kg in getting fit. As to wheel upgrades, 36 spoke wheels also have advantages.Or you can save 2.5kg by spending £300+ more.


Arguably it's better to ride a heavy bike if the aim is just to get fit and lose weight.

Some people buying these bikes could do with losing 20kg. I include myself in that category, I'm currently trying to lose just over that amount of fat.

I bought a full carbon bike a month or so ago and don't see much point in using it until I get this weight off. It also acts as a motivator to lose the pounds. Happy with a crappy mountain bike, cheap hack in the meantime. Would be a waste to use the carbon bike just to save on a few kgs.
Edited by: "supermann" 3rd Nov
Offer now expired. I personally wouldn't pay the current prices. Probably be back down again for black friday if you missed the offer.
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