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We review if the GT Grade Carbon Expert really could carry you the distance in comfort, on and off road.

gt grade
Best for...
Long rides over bumpy terrain, where a bit of offroad might sneak in
Overall Score
A great combination of performance and comfort for lumpy UK roads and a bit of offroad where required
Careful you don't damage those skinny seatstays

Sporting their signature triple triangle frame there is no mistaking the Grade Carbon Expert is a GT - this is a design they have stuck with forever, throughout their offroad and road ranges.

The Grade is their own take on the adventure bike model: a slack head angled, long wheelbased frame that is as comfortable on the road as off. Tyre clearances should be possible up to around the 35mm range for that extra grip and cushioning offroad too. This is a bike for the long road and, if a few bumps crop up or you turn off onto a fireroad for a change of pace, it will happily soak them up and keep you trucking.

The carbon frame has deliberately skinny seatstays to flex under load, keeping the rider a little more remote from rough terrain underneath, but the tapered head tube and oversized down tube both aim to reduce flex. This should give the best of both worlds, with a comfortable 'suspension' for the seated rider, but accurate steering and power transfer, helped again by the chunky bottom bracket area. Jumping out the saddle for a sprint should produce some pretty instant results.

The build on this Expert level is Shimano 105, an excellent value and fully dependable kit. Braking is taken care of by Shimano hydraulic BR-M365s too, so bringing it all to a halt will be a smooth and powerful experience. A well kitted out bike that should see you through everything from your daily commute to a full blown fire road experience.



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