Cervelo’s mighty TT machine, the P3 - Road Cycling UK

Expert road bike reviews and the latest road bike news, features and advice. Find rides & events, training articles and participate in our forums



Cervelo’s mighty TT machine, the P3

CSC's TT Cervelo

Faster than a gazelle – and better looking too


David Zabriskie at the Dauphine

The P3 is a bike used to winning. In the recent Dauphine Libere opening prologue, a flat 4km stage, David Zabriskie took the win with an average speed of over 53kph (33mph). It was a perfect showcase for Cervolo’s drop dead gorgeous P3. But also remember the prologue of the 2005 tour when Zabriskie beat Lance Armstrong by two seconds, and Ivan Basso won both TT’s in the 2005 Giro.

Previously, Cervelo’s TT bike was aluminium, but to meet their aero requirements they had to switch to carbon, which they did last year. The switch allowed them to make one of the most aero bikes on the pro tour. Cervelo have a coloured history of making TT bikes, this page is worth checking out.

The P3 is a complex frame to manufacturer. The curved constant seat tube for example must have given the manufacturers a hard time. Unlike other designs the seat tube is intended to shield and deflect air around the rear wheel. The seat post keeps weight low and aero performance high, and while it looks like an integrated design is actually adjustable for height, too small bolts hidden at the back allow adjustment.

The down tube, head tube and seat tube are claimed to be the thinnest on the market. The thickness and lay-up of the tubes are dialled to increase the stiffness where it’s needed and give some vertical compliance. The frame’s been designed mostly in the windtunnel, with much input from the CSC team with which they work closely.

Continuing the aero theme, gear and brake cables run inside the frame, there’s just one bottle cage mount and de-rigour Zipp wheels complete the package. The Visiontech aerobars are full carbon items, and are all standard. Apart from one addition we spotted, the mechanics have attached an extra brake lever to the right side extension bar, so riders can stay in the aero position and still brake. Madness. Also, check out the saddle which has had its nose cut of to get the whole thing further forward.

More info
Madison (importers)

Carbon seat post with cut saddle

Zab at full speed Ahead

and the FSA Carbon chainset

Carbon bars with the additional brake lever

A closer look at that brake lever

We love Zipp wheels


Newsletter Terms & Conditions

Please enter your email so we can keep you updated with news, features and the latest offers. If you are not interested you can unsubscribe at any time. We will never sell your data and you'll only get messages from us and our partners whose products and services we think you'll enjoy.

Read our full Privacy Policy as well as Terms & Conditions.