Hi road.cc members, 

I am new to road cycling, so have been browsing lots of road bikes online. I'd like a bike for a mix of commuting and occasional social rides. 

I have narrowed down to the Cannondale Topstone or Specialized Diverge E5 Elite. Which is the better bike? Looks like the Specialized has a lower spec. Links to the bikes below:

Cannondale Topstone:


Specialized Diverge E5 Elite:


Any advice would be appreciated?






Luca Patrono [19 posts] 2 months ago

Few comments:

- Both Cannondale and Specialized are big manufacturers. Your money may go further with another brand.

- The difference between a 2x10 drive train and a 2x11 is small.

- Diverge models at this price range use mechanical disc brakes, which require a lot of messing around adjusting the pads and (for me) have pad alignment problems which cause the bite point to recede as the pads wear. The Topstone has Shimano hydraulics which should require much less maintenance.

- I ride a Diverge myself, but the E5 Comp with the Future Shock, which should be comparable in price and spec to the Cannondale you linked, if not less expensive now. If you intend to ride a lot on rough surfaces then I wouldn't ride a Diverge without a FS - some will disagree but I notice a fair bit of difference compared to my other road bike, on which I've hurt my wrists a few times on potholes and unexpected bumps.

- I've had some issues with spokes on the Axis Elite wheels on my Diverge.

Of those two options, the Cannondale is the better bike, but given the price range then that is as expected.

Badstoob [3 posts] 2 months ago

The 105 Cannondale seems to be in short supply, I could only find the Sora but not in my size.  I've had a brief sit on the Specialized but wasn't sure about the Future Shock.  I was put off by the cable disc brakes as when I last used them, they were a pain to adjust.  Is there anything else out there for around the same price with through axles, hydraulics and decent tyre clearance? The Diverge seemed to fit me fine, whereas a Trek Checkpoint did not.

Morat [337 posts] 2 months ago

If you can afford hydraulic disks you should get them over mechanical every time. I have both and although the bike with mechanical disks is lighter and feels fantastic to ride my go-to bike is the one with hydraulic disks because it inspires so much confidence when descending quickly.