NeilPryde Diablo – First Look

Doesn’t look too bad does it?
Arty decals around the headtube

Earlier this year the efforts of NeilPryde’s first foray into the world of bicycles were revealed to us as we swung a leg of the aero Alize.

Windsurfing company NeilPryde has been around for 35 years and is now putting its extensive experience of carbon fibre manufacture and understanding of aerodynamics into a range of bicycles, which currently consists of two models. Enlisted too were the brains of the BMW Group DesignworksUSA to tap into their design experience drawn from years working in the automotive and aviation industries.

We came away from the Alize impressed, and now we’ve been handed the flagship in the company’s range, the racy Diablo. So we have high hopes for this model. And from taking a look at the bike when it arrived in the office the other day, it’s hard not to be. For a start, it looks great, a stylish paintjob and discrete branding that really draw your eye into the many curves and tube profiles.

Underneath the paint is a frame built from carbon fibre and, aside from sharing the same geometry as the Alize, there the similarities end. The Diablo has been built to be as light as possible, so it’s a good few hundred grammes lighter, but also to be stiffer and more direct. Ideal for the racing cyclist, precisely the rider the Diablo is aimed at.

There’s some distinguishing features that stand the Diablo a good chance of holding its own against the calibre of bikes it’s up against (I’m thinking Trek Madone, Giant TCR, Cannondale SuperSix and so on), such as an exoskeleton of continuous C6.7 carbon fibres and stiffening ribs in the fork blades and rear stays.

Other contemporary features include a tapered head tube and fork steerer, skinny seatstays and chainstays. It’s a completely different beast to the aero Alize, and to my eyes offers a more pleasing aesthetic. I like the shaped and flared down tube, the curved top tube and the decals that unify the individual elements of the frame.

Details include the rear brake cable being routed internally though the top tube with a full length of outer hose. This is good: not only making cable replacement easy but we’ve experienced no nasty cable rattle on our first spin on the bike.

The Diablo’s lean muscular lines carry a full Shimano Dura-Ace 7900 groupset including a race-ready 53/39 chainset, so we expect no issues arising in the shifting or braking departments. FSA SLK bars, stem and seatpost and lightweight Selle Italia saddle are all top notch choices as are the Mavic Ksyrium SL wheels, wrapped as they are with the very excellent Hutchinson Atom tyres. Such a built will set you back £3999, and it really does look like, on paper at least, a flawless build.

A first ride report soon…


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