Salsa has started to ship out 2011 Fargo completes to dealers. We got our first three in late last week. These bikes are everything I had hoped they would be. They come with nice parts at a reasonable price. The components are nice enough to work well for years, and yet are priced to keep it at a fair $1750.
The color this year is a very classy bone color with a pearl finish. It has a really nice luster and would match just about any color of components you could want to dress it up with. I'm thinking a Chris King brown set up with a antique brown Brooks would be to die for!
The panels are a Salsa's woodcut design. These are really understated as well, and the darker brown compliments the main color really well.
Quality drive train components in a 2x10 format should keep this bike turning out miles for along time. I am a big fan of the trend towards compact doubles for general bike use. It provides the usable range of most triples while reducing mechanical complexity. I think it just looks better too.
I love the subtle curve of the seat stays as they hit the rear dropouts. The gentle curve adds a touch of class and really blends into the curve of the dropouts really well. On the smaller sized bikes this also helps make room for the chain stay mounted disc brake. Salsa's motto of "Adventure by Bike" is written inconspicuously on the inner chain stay. I dig it.
The Fargo comes stock with WTB's excellent Silverado saddle and Cane Creek Thudbuster seatpost. The Thuduster is a welcome addition to the build. These are hugely comfortable at the end of a long day in the saddle. I've loved using mine. The fact that these are now standard equipment should make a lot of people very happy. In the background are Continental's fine Race King 2.2" tires. These are currently my favorite all around use tire. From hard MTB trails to gravel, these do well in a variety of conditions and roll exceedingly well. Another very well thought out component choice in my opinion.
Salsa brown gel bar tape matches the panels really well and in general goes very well with the overall look of the bike.
A 31.8 Woddchipper bar, Cane Creek S-3 headset and a new 4 bolt Moto Ace stem round out the front controls of this bike. Good quality stuff all around, these do the job without complaint, and should almost last forever. These new stems are a very nice improvement over the older 2 bolt Salsa stems. They have a more refined look, and appear a bit more streamlined in appearance.
The new 2011 Fargo complete is a killer bike. The new geometry is much more mtb/gravel as opposed to the older touring minded bike. This will still end itself to offroad touring very well, but will do so in a much more modern way. The bike will be much more at home on single track than it's older counterpart, and should make a much better all round bike for most people. In addition, this year's Fargo can take an 80mm suspension fork. This is an improvement that my hands welcome in certain places. It is one of the main reasons why I will at some point own this bike. I still love riding my original Fargo, but there are now enough reasons to legitimately own both.
Happy Wednesday all. Have a good one.