If you would have asked me what I thought of road bikes a few years ago the simple answer would have been; ‘I don’t really care about them or want to ride them’. I also said; ‘I would never wear lycra,’ oh how things change! I am now a very happy convert and I have quite a good idea how this happened; the simple short explanation is that I moved from flat London to Devon, one of the hilliest parts of the UK. This is a bike review so I won’t bore you with unnecessary information about the transference from fixed gear to road bikes and I will just get on and start the review.
To be honest I could bash this review out in 5 simple words; responsive, fast, quality, light and gorgeous; but I suppose I should give you a bit more than that. Moda are a UK based company that are relatively new on the bike scene but don’t mistake this freshness for inexperience. It is apparent straight away that they know exactly what they are doing. The Moda Stretto comes in a notch under £3000 and to be honest it’s worth every penny; you get a hell of a lot for of bike for your money. The Stretto’s frame and fork are built using a high modulus carbon composite blend and it comes equipped with a bunch of high end components.
Let me start from the ground up; the Stretto rolls on an American Classic Aero 3 wheel set that are light weight and definitely compliment the technologically advanced frame set. It comes equipped with the snappy SRAM Force gearset and brakes and has an in house branded Barelli carbon crankset, seat post, saddle, bar and stem. The 56cm build I have been testing comes in at a few grams under the 7.5kg mark, without pedals, and you can really feel the effects of this when riding.
It features a 73 degrees head tube and 73.5 degree seat tube on the 56cm bike, something that I really like is that the top tube length is the same as the extended seat tube, this square geometry give the Stretto a very nimble and nippy feel. The tapered steerer creates a stable and very responsive ride; I really like the way it feels when descending tight switchbacks. The only limitations are those you set yourself, you can fully pin it into corners at speed and the Stretto remains locked to the line you’ve chosen like it’s on rails. I weigh around 80kg and did notice that the wheels have a bit of flex when fully leaning into corners though I always remained rubber side down even when pushing it to the limits, there is also a bit of flex in the wheels when sprinting or climbing hard, though these are effects of the wheel set not the frame and if you are a heavier rider you might choose a wheel set with a higher spoke count.
Aesthetically the Stretto is very pleasing; the perfect blend of oversize and aero tubing, I particularly like how the seat tube flares around the rear wheel. The beefy bottom bracket shell and short rear end enable quick acceleration, and the carbon crankset feels incredibly stiff. The Stretto is fully of modern touches such as press fit BB30 bottom bracket and internal cable routing that should keep fussier riders like myself happy. The matt white, black and grey paint job is understated yet still manages to be eye-catching.
On the whole the Stretto is a race ready machine that is hard to fault, I have ridden it thousands of miles and it still feels as fresh as the day to arrived. The wheel set would possible be the only thing I would change as I like something a bit stiffer as I sprint and climb a lot. A great thing about this bike is not only is it great to race on it is also comfortable enough for longer rides or a sportive. So if you want a light weight, race ready, responsive and quality bike then definitely give the Moda Stretto a look.
Photo by Juliet Elliott
Last year I went to Italy and Switzerland to film with Met Helmets and got to ride the Stretto up some of the legendary climbs check out this video. Thanks to Todays Cyclist for sending the Stretto over for review.