Cannondale F-Si

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Release Year
Wheel Size
Number of Gears
18.50, 19.40, 20.02, 22.30, 25.20 lbs
Brake Type
Frame Material

Summary of Reviews

We have read all expert and user reviews on the Cannondale F-Si. In summary, this is what cyclists think.

18 reasons to buy

  • The F-Si cornered with precision at high speeds, in racing situations.
  • It was deemed ‘striking’, ‘head-turning’ and ‘uniquely good-looking’.
  • Single-tined Lefty Ocho forks weighed only 51oz and handled large hits well.
  • Climbing was considered to be fast and efficient atop the F-Si.
  • A cable-actuated fork lockout system simplifies tuning and maintenance.
  • Powerful Shimano XT brakes impressed on the F-Si 2.
  • A slack 69° head-angle and 55mm fork offset gave a planted and agile ride.
  • New 1⅛ x 1.5 tapered headtubes were now compatible with standard steerers.
  • Asymmetrical rear stays allowed stiffer, symmetrical lacing of the rear wheel.
  • Tire clearance allowed for rubber up to 2.35” in width.
  • The Schwalbe Racing Ray / Racing Ralph combo was fast and grippy.
  • An integrated seat-clamp allowed extra seatpost flex and kept lines clean.
  • Testers reported direct power transference into the F-Si’s back end.
  • SRAM’s Eagle groupset was regarded as reliable and exacting in its operation.
  • The ‘stunning’ carbon chassis design featured internal cabling.
  • A steel Eagle NX Cassette on the F-Si 5 was heavier, yet resilient.
  • Internal cable routing was readied for dropper-post connection.
  • The rear wheel’s ‘Speed-Release’ thru-axle made removal quick and easy.

7 reasons not to buy

  • Experts agreed that descents on the F-Si demanded attention and skill.
  • The ‘Ai’ system means that rear wheel replacements must be very specific.
  • Many testers and owners were keen to see a dropper-post specced on the F-Si.
  • The single-tined Lefty Ocho fork requires a front wheel with a unique hub
  • One expert said the bike came across as jouncy on rugged terrain.
  • A tester was not dazzled by SRAM Level T brakes on the F-Si 3.
  • Fork offset, wide bars and long stems led to slightly twitchy handling that suited advanced riders.

Bottom line

Not a beginner’s bike, but definitely a great option for your first race bike. Years of refinement see Cannondale’s unique technical innovations coalesce into the cross-country beast that is the F-Si. The manufacturer’s iconic Lefty fork, in this ‘Ocho’ configuration, sports superior low-friction sensitivity to small impacts due to the use of needle bearings and a progressive air shock. This sensitivity is perceived as a characteristic of the bike’s racy demeanour. Asymmetric ‘Ai’ rear stays make for a stiffer rear wheel, while an unprecedentedly slack head-angle and 55mm fork offset aims at a stable yet nimble ride. What is the upshot of all this tech banter? The F-Si is a refined, high-performance machine that might be too much for beginners, but which is a proven winner at breakneck speed in challenging conditions. Complete bikes range from around $2K to over $10K, allowing entry on a range of budgets.

Expert Reviews

83/100 based on 4 rated expert reviews

Cannondale F-Si Hi-Mod World Cup Review

Uniquely-forked, arse-kicking, ultralight XC racer but not for the faint-hearted or under-financed.

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Cannondale F-Si Carbon 3 Review

It’s difficult to dispute the stealth, almost Darth Vader-like visage of the Cannondale F-Si… Power transfer is immediate, whether you’re seated or out of the saddle… The F-Si is a lively bike…

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Cannondale F-Si Hi-Mod World Cup: Next Level [Spanish]

The F-Si remains an impetuous and somewhat nervous bike in the fastest descents . It’s very light and responds vehemently to any insinuation.

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Review: Cannondale F-SI Carbon 5 [Dutch]

It is good to be able to report that this stripped down version gives the same quick impression as its much more expensive brother… the wheels are a lot heavier and the fork less stiff… but this is hardly a hindrance.

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Mountain Bike Action

Cannondale F-Si Carbon 3

If you’re looking to get your first serious mountain bike, the Cannondale F-Si Carbon 3 should be vying for your attention. Road riders looking to get dirty, look no further… a serious competitive weapon.

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User Ratings

100/100 based on 3 ratings
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Bike Comparison

Cannondale F-Si in comparison to averages