The road bicycle is poetry in motion. It is elegance. It is power. It is speed. Without responsive function, however, all you have is a pretty hunk of carbon fiber and pricey components.

SCOTT Bicycles not only makes bikes that are beautiful, they put all the engineering and product research possible into making their bicycles fast and efficient.

To truly be fast, a bicycle must be responsive to each pedal stroke in a way that transfers more power to forward motion and less that is lost via frame flex, wind drag or any of the number of things that can prevent you from reaching your maximum potential.

The pinnacle of SCOTT’s road bike line is the Addict RC Ultimate. Worthy of being raced in the Tour de France where cyclists demand and expect only the very best, the Addict RC Ultimate is what happens after thousands of hours spent researching, modeling and testing bikes.

SCOTT is pleased with that result.

Let’s dig into the SCOTT Addict RC frame. Aside from the rider’s fitness, usually the biggest hindrance to riding fast is wind. Made of a HMX carbon fiber, the Addict RC uses a patented Airfoil design to help the bike split the wind. Airfoil brings the best in aerodynamics to road cycling, minimizing air drag and optimizing power transfer.

Bikes are funny creatures when it comes to power transfer. Typically, the more stiff a bike frame, the more power is directly specifically to the drivetrain. A less-stiff bike might flex or bow under the strain of a powerful pedal stroke resulting in watts evaporating into the frame flew and being wasted. Individually, a little lost power per pedal stroke isn’t a huge thing, but it adds up over a long day in the saddle.

Suppose two riders with identical fitness and identical body measurements began a ride together and each pedal stroke had a hypothetical 250 watts of power. Rider A was on a SCOTT Addict RC Ultimate while Rider B was on a bike with a less stiff frame. Rider A gets 250 watts of power transfer with each pedal stroke while the riding partner gets 248 watts because his chain stays flex a tiny amount under the force of the pedal stroke. After thousands of pedal strokes, Rider A is either already much farther ahead than his buddie or has a lot more energy left in the tank for the sprint to the finish line.

That’s why bike companies are always looking for ways to improve power transfer through a more stiff carbon fiber frame. Sometimes, the lighter frame is not necessarily the fastest because power is lost somewhere between the crankset and tire. Sometimes the stiffest and lightest frame has poor geometry and rider position and comfort result in a sub-optimal pedal stroke. The secret formula is ever elusive and ever changing.

SCOTT spends countless hours trying to find ‘the sweet spot’ in carbon fiber frame building.

Being lightweight helps a bike climb faster. Being aerodynamic helps a bike ride flat roads faster. But being responsive makes all the difference in both regards.

Everything from bottom bracket size and position to top tube angle has a small impact on performance. By running computer and mechanical simulations, SCOTT is able to fine tune each frame to provide the most power transfer per pedal stroke possible while retaining rider comfort and aerodynamics.

Even the evolution of components makes a difference. Let’s take a look at the Syncros Creston cockpit. Crisp, clean and classy, the Syncros Creston combo cockpit is a one-piece unit that combines the handlebars and stem into a seamless package that is oh, so aero. Total cable integration from the levers into the handlebars, through the stem and into the head tube reduce all air flow interruption from cables and junctions between components. When less power from your pedal stroke is spent fighting through air - even when there is a tailwind - more power is transferred directly to the rear wheel where the rubber hits the road.

Careful design of angles and positions is performed to maximize rider comfort while maximizing the ability to create force. Again, it’s a sweet spot every bike maker strives for and SCOTT seems to be setting the standard.

Small details - ranging from a 12-gram carbon friendly seat clamp to a thru-axle system on the rear dropouts - add up to create one incredibly responsive bicycle.

It’s fast, it’s functional and it’s all about performance. It’s SCOTT.