Cannondale Slate Review

Written by:

Liam E.

Last updated:

May 29, 2020

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Cannondale Slate

The Cannondale Slate is an aluminum frame bike with a carbon lefty Oliver fork. You can use the bicycle for road, gravel, trail, or pretty much any type of riding you choose.

The Cannondale Slate is versatile, which makes it perfect for riding in a wide range of terrain.

The bike has an eye-catching modern design.

The bicycle's fork has a lockout that allows you to adjust the suspension according to the surface you're riding over.

The bike's fabric saddle is not fun to ride on.

The Cannondale Slate is an expensive bike to buy.

The Cannondale Slate has 3 different models, which are all made from aluminum. The models include the Cannondale Slate 105 with a Shimano 105 build, Slate Ultegra, and the SRAM Force CX1 equipped version. The three bikes all have disc brakes, the same wheels, and tires.

Prices for the bikes are $2,980 for the 105, $3,520 for Ultegra, and $4,260 for Force CX1. 

The Slate's main feature is its lefty fork. If you've never ridden a bike with a lefty fork before, this bicycle might look odd. But after a few miles on the bike, you should get used to it and realize it provides OK suspension. The bike is available in four sizes small, medium, large, and extra-large.

The Cannondale Slate bike, which was launched in 2015, has been discounted. But there are other excellent Cannondale bikes you can opt for. Read about them in our Cannondale bike reviews.

Who is this bike for?

  • The Cannondale Slate is perfect if you do a lot of road and trail riding. The bike performs really well on and off-road, so instead of having different bikes for each of these terrains, get the Cannondale Slate, and you're sorted.
  • If you're looking for a do-it-all bike, the Cannondale Slate is also a good option for you.

Cannondale Slate

Performance

  • The Slate's lefty suspension fork only has 30mm travel, which isn't a lot. That means it won't absorb every bump or smoothen the ride all the time. However, what we like about the fork is that it can be easily adjusted to suit different terrain. For example, if you're going uphill, you can press the button at the top of the fork leg to make the bike suspension firm. Once you're done climbing, press the button again, and you get the 30mm of travel back.
  • The Cannondale Slate 650b wheels wrapped with 42c wide tires provide good grip, control, comfort, and speed. They feel absolutely fabulous both on and off the road.
  • Shimano hydraulic brakes ensure you have powerful brakes for multiple surfaces and all weather conditions.
  • This bike comes with different gear options that all shift smoothly. Depending on your riding style, you could get the Slate bike with a 2×11 drivetrain, which is common with most road bikes, the 1×11, or 1×12 drivetrain. Whichever you choose, you'll have plenty of gears that make it easier to ride over various surfaces.

Conclusion

The Cannondale Slate is a super fun bike that you can do so many things on. We love it because you'll be able to explore more outside the city with the bike. The price may be on the higher side, but you're paying for multiple bikes in one.

So, you can sell your road and hardtail bikes and get just one bicycle, the Cannondale Slate, for all your on and off-road biking!

Specifications

Frame:

Slate, SmartForm C1 Premium Alloy, Di2 ready, SAVE, BB30a

Suspension

Fork:

Cannondale Lefty Oliver Carbon w/ PBR, 30mm Travel, 45mm offset

Rear Shock:

Front Travel:

30mm Travel

Rear Travel:

Crankset:

SRAM Apex Alloy, 44T

Bottom Bracket:

Cannondale BB30

Shifters:

SRAM Apex 1 HRD, 1x11

Rear Derailleur:

SRAM Apex 1, Long cage

Number of Gears:

SRAM PG-1130, 11-42, 11-speed

Brakes:

SRAM Apex 1 HRD, 160/160mm Centerline/ SRAM Apex 1 HRD

Wheel Size:

WTB STP i19 TCS, 28h, tubeless ready

Tires:

WTB Resolute, 650b x 42c, tubeless ready

Handlebar:

Cannondale C3, 6061 Alloy, Compact

Stem:

Cannondale C3, 6061 Alloy, 31.8, 7°

Seat Post:

Cannondale C3, 6061 Alloy, 27.2 x 300mm

Saddle:

Fabric Scoop Radius Sport, steel rails

Headset:

Chain:

SRAM PC-1110, 11-speed

Cannondale Slate

The Cannondale Slate is an aluminum frame bike with a carbon lefty Oliver fork. You can use the bicycle for road, gravel, trail, or pretty much any type of riding you choose.