Rim brakes have long been top dog when it comes to stopping duties on road bike, with traditionalists resistant to embracing disc brake technology on the grounds of a few familiar arguments - too heavy, not aerodynamic, and they just don't look right.
Now is the tipping point however - disc brakes have never been better, and with a number of technological advancements and changes to frame design to better suit discs, we are now spoilt for choice when it comes to braking. Previously the preserve of endurance bikes, you'll now find high performance race bikes and aerodynamically-optimised road bikes built around disc brakes which match or even outperform their rim brake siblings, and with changes to UCI and British Cycling rulings you can now race on disc brakes if that's your preferred type of riding. Disc equipped road bikes enable you to descend faster and with more confidence, and grant you the freedom to explore roads and trails that you would not have considered on your caliper equipped bike. These bikes make it easier and more enjoyable to ride road than ever before, with more reliable braking performance in all conditions and better modulation right at your fingertips.
Here at Rutland Cycling we offer a huge range of disc brake-equipped road bikes, but we understand that switching to discs can be a daunting choice if you're only familiar with caliper brakes. Here, you'll find everything you need to know about disc brake road bikes with tips and advice, reviews, and product news.
Tips & Advice
Mechanical vs Hydraulic disc brakes
So, you've decided on disc brakes - great! Now do you choose mechanical or hydraulic disc brakes? Mechanical disc brakes work in a similar way to regular rim brakes, in that the caliper is actuated by a cable which runs from the levers. Mechanical disc brakes are usually cheaper, but don't provide quite the same bite or modulation as hydraulic disc brakes. Hydraulic disc brakes, on the other hand, use a closed system of hoses and reservoirs containing special hydraulic fluid to operate the brakes. When the lever is activated, a plunger pushes the fluid through the hoses and into the caliper where the pads are pushed onto the rotor, stopping the bike. This system provides far better performance and braking control than mechanical systems but does require a little more know-how to maintain. In the middle ground, systems like Giant's Conduct braking kit use a cable-actuated master cylinder allowing you to combine the simplicity of mechanical disc brakes with the power and smoth feel of hydraulic brakes.
Our most popular disc brake road bikes
Latest Product news
New Scott Addict RC Launched
The Addict RC has been on the scene over ten years and in that time has built a wealth of accolades to its name, being one of the most successful bikes on the circuit. Road cycling is ever-evolving, with the needs of professional riders constantly changing and progression being the name of the game, but where can bike design go next? Cur the 2020 Addict RC, the new benchmark when it comes to racing.Read more >
Specialized launch new Roubaix
With six wins at Paris-Roubaix since its arrival 15 years ago, nothing or no-one can claim to be more successful on the cobbles than the Specialized Roubaix - proof, for sure, of Specialized's belief that when it comes to rough road surfaces, smoother is faster. Building on that performance heritage, Specialized have updated the Roubaix platform to deliver a more capable bike which improves performance for both the racer and rider alike.Read more >
Review: Liv Enviliv Advanced Pro 1 Disc
I was always keen to try the Enviliv and as soon as it was released, I was carefully watching when this would be available in store at the Rutland Cycling Giant store in Normanton (well worth a visit for the Liv range!). The Enviliv is the revamped version of the Liv Envie. When it was finally here, I was so excited and haven't been disappointed, I was chuffed to be riding it and it has lived up to its expectation.Read more >