Weight, design, upgrades, assembly
The Vilano R2 is a sleek road bike with a smooth performance that you’ll enjoy taking out for a ride. It comes at an entry-level price yet still manages to deliver the level of quality you’re looking for in a road bike.
Getting a road bike that fully balances the needs for your daily commute can be a tough ask, especially when looking to buy on a budget. Most cheap models available tend to give in to the stress of frequent road use after a short period.
Luckily, there are a few standouts that you can find in the market with a performance level that might change your attitude towards affordable road bikes. A good example is the R2 bicycle model from Vilano.
In this review, we delve deeper into the features that the Vilano R2 comes with while considering all areas where the bike ticks and those that it doesn’t to find out whether it is worth the trouble. Let us first look at the different specifications on the bike:
FRAME: 6061 Double Butted Aluminum Frame
BRAKE TYPES: Alloy Caliper Brakes
SHIFTER: Shimano A050 Thumb Shifters
RIMS: 700c Doubled Walled CNC Machined Wheelset, Quick Release Skewers
TIRES: 700c by 25c
The Vilano R2 has a charming and durable design with a frame made from 6061 double-butted aluminum. It is available in small, medium, and large sizes that measure 50cm, 54cm, and 58cm respectively.
The frame maintains a smooth traditional look with an appealing gloss black color that blends in well with sleek build of the bike. The joints have been neatly welded to make for a formidable and sturdy overall construction.
Weighing just 27 pounds, the lightweight Vilano R2 enhances rideability so that you don’t have to strain when you encounter steep roads and other inclines. This road bicycle offers a smooth ride, thanks to its overall comfortable geometry.
I like that it comes in various amazing color options, allowing you to choose a shade that best suits your preferences. Also, there is plenty of room on the front frame triangle for you to carry accessories for your ride.
The Vilano R2 has been equipped with a water bottle mount to ensure that you stay hydrated during those long biking adventures. I must admit that my first time taking out this bike for a road test went as smooth as I expected.
The seat is comfortable and this adds to your posture when you get on the bike. Although lightweight, the bike feels sturdy and the aluminum can really take some punishment during treacherous rides without showing any signs of slowing down.
The Vilano R2 is equipped with alloy caliper brakes, which are among the best in its class. These have stable braking performance and will bring your bike to a stop on a dime, even on wet roads.
Whether you are using the bike for a race or long rally, you can expect the same performance from these brakes. The quick braking power ensures that this bike is excellent to use on the streets.
The brake levers are very neutral and will feel natural in your hands. Depending on your preferences, you might want to adjust the brake lever height just a little to find the perfect fit.
The double-walled CNC machined wheelset on the bike promise a smooth biking experience. However, there have been some customer complaints about the wheels not being as durable as you’d expect from a Vilano bike.
I thought the shape was a tad unconventional, although this is not a significant cause for concern. The nontraditional tubes have variations in size and profile, which results in stiffness in regions that experience a lot of stress.
The wheelset is, nevertheless, aided by the existence of a Quick Release Skewer that functions very well. Overall, the tires deliver on their job and the same goes for the wheelset.
This bike uses Shimano A050 thumb shifters that work with a Shimano 21 speed drivetrain to stay ahead of any situation on the road. However, the forward rings have friction shift that will take some time to get used to.
It’s a good thing that STI shifting innovation has been introduced to the biking community, making it easy to maintain and access to professional servicing has also been enhanced.
The Shimano front friction 3-speed and rear indexed 7-speed combine to make a total of 21 different speed levels. This means that you’ll get just the amount of speed you need for the terrain you’re biking in.
The 700c by 25c wheels on the Vilano R2 get good traction on the road, and their slim design makes them ideal for the road terrain. However, I should mention that the best bike inner tubes tend to deflate faster than the standard rate.
They are not exactly terrible, but it would be best if you found a viable replacement when you get your hands on a new model to make the most of the ride.
What Do We Like?
The Vilano R2 has got an array of useful features that make it the formidable road bike it is. For one, the bike has a neat, sharp look with a variety of cute color combinations to choose from. It is also suitable for both men and women.
You will appreciate the ease of upgrade that this bike offers. The components can readily be improved to match the performance you are looking for. Whether you want to upgrade the quality of pedals, handlebars, saddle, etc., the bike is very accommodating to such changes to enable you to create the “ideal” bike.
Another thing you’ll realize about the R2 is its ease of assembly. The bike is delivered 90% assembled, so it will take you a matter of minutes to get it up and going. And the best part is that not much work is required; just a few tightening and adjustment of key parts and you’ll be ready to hit the road.
Despite being light, this bicycle bears a sturdy build with the aluminum frame construction. This ensures that you have a sleek ride on the road with no strain during inclines yet you can trust it not to yield under the pressure of frequent biking. The speed is great while the gear shifts are smooth and simple.
Overall, the Vilano R2 will greatly improve your biking experience. The smoothness of the bike is not restricted to its appearance; this stretches to the performance. The posture is comfortable, as is the saddle and the bike handles quite well, even on substandard roads.
What Don’t We Like?
One thing that didn’t tick for me was the quality of brakes. They did not exactly provide the performance that I had expected. Braking was a little sloppy, which didn’t do much to help my riding confidence.
The same goes for the tires. The inner tubes are quick to deflate when you take the bike for an extended ride, which is something that the manufacturer could look into for improvements. Fortunately, you have the option of upgrading yourself.
Advice to Buyers
The Vilano R2 is an amazing entry-level road bike that was designed for the cost-conscious consumer. It has a variety of helpful specifications that will provide you with a fulfilling and enjoyable ride for your short commutes around campus or town.
For just over $200, you can get your hands on a brand-new R2; a cheap price to pay for the level of performance it offers. I had a ball taking this bike for a test ride; I don’t see why you won’t!
The R2 is lightweight yet durable to give you an easy time on the road with no unnecessary repairs. The gears shift smoothly to ensure that you get to make the most of the 21 speed changes for every terrain that you encounter.
Although there have been grievances about the quality of brakes and tires on the bike, this doesn’t exactly amount to a deal-breaker. Besides, its ease of upgrade ensures that you can always modify the bike to meet the standards you are looking for.
Generally speaking, the Vilano R2 is a practical road bike that offers a great bang for the buck! It would be an excellent choice for your daily commute if you have the change to spare.
Last update on 2023-06-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
1 thought on “Vilano R2 – Budget Road Bike Review”
What replacement tires do you recommend may work well with the Vilano R2?