Specialized introduces most affordable Aethos yet with new third-tier model

The 105-equipped model uses the brand's 9r carbon to hit the new lower price point

Clock10:32, Wednesday 13th December 2023
The big S has released a new third-tier Aethos to the range

© Specialized

The big S has released a new third-tier Aethos to the range

The anti-aero, lightweight Aethos from Specialized has just had a new model added to the range and it comes in at £3,250, making it the cheapest offering in the Aethos catalogue.

The new Aethos Sport follows the range's tried-and-tested lightweight recipe with a traditional silhouette that bucks the trend for aero optimisation that has gripped the bike market for the last decade.

Along with the round tube profiles, it has partially externally routed cables that enter the frame on the down tube rather than going through the headset.

The bike also features the latest Shimano 105 mechanical 12-speed groupset. For the time being at least, the Sport will not be available in the US, with the bike retailing for €3,800 in Europe.

Joining the new Aethos Sport is an update to the Aethos Comp. This was previously made using the brand's 10r carbon frame. However, thanks to this latest update, it will now use the same 9r frame found on the Sport model.

This comes with the more premium Di2 version of Shimano’s 105 groupset and will retail for £4,250 / $4,500 / €4,800.

The Aethos was Specialized’s countermeasure against the fully integrated aero movement when it was first launched back in 2020. The aim was to create a bike that was fun to ride and was lightweight, with the S-Works frame tipping the scales at 585 grams.

The range-topping S-Works Aethos Campagnolo LTD commands the dizzying price tag of £15,000. However, this new 9r carbon frame provides a reduction in cost for anyone looking to get their hands on an Aethos.

Until the release of the new frame, the cheapest Aethos available was the 2023 Aethos Comp, which used the brand's 10r carbon in its frame construction and cost £5,000. Now the Comp model has seen a reduction in price by £750, albeit with a lower-grade carbon frame.

The Aethos Sport has significantly lowered the entry point into the range, but, even with the recent price increases across the industry, £3,250 is still a large investment.

One major benefit of the Aethos is the fact it is an easy bike to live with and a competent mechanic can easily carry out regular maintenance at home. This is not something that is necessarily true of the new wave of fully integrated aero bikes.

What do you think of this new breed of non-aero bikes that are trying to rekindle the simplistic thrill of riding rather than optimising everything to save watts? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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