1

I'm thinking of a new bike Giant Contend ar3 or ar4. The only difference is Sora vs Claris. I'm thinking I don't really care about shifting performance or how many gears total (both enough for me) but I do care about weight and if these shifter has a big impact on bike speed.

In my case is it worth to pay the $200 more for Sora if I only care about the last 2 points? Or is there any difference in weight or speed of my bike that is noticeable?

6
  • 3
    We can’t read your mind and know how much you value every gram saved. Did you already look up the weight differences yourself or are you asking us to track that info down for you?
    – Paul H
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 6:55
  • 2
    These groupsets are quite similar. The differences are quite small and if you plan to use large cassettes like 11-32 or 11-34, the nine gears are handy because the jumps are large - I own both of them. Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 8:58
  • Have you ridden them?
    – David D
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 12:37
  • 2
    The biggest difference (besides 2x8 vs 2x9) seems to be the crankset and bottom bracket. The AR4 comes with a square taper cartridge bottom bracket and the FSA Tempo crank. Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 13:30
  • I do care about weight You won't even notice the difference if you rode both. if these shifter has a big impact on bike speed. Not one bit. How fast a bicycle of a given geometry/setup can go is almost entirely due to one factor - the rider. Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 20:15

1 Answer 1

5

From what I can find the Contend AR3 weighs 9.7kg while the AR4 weighs 10.3kg.

So it’s not a huge difference. At the same time 200$ is also a relatively cheap price for that kind of weight saving.

The bigger reason why I’d go for the Sora is that it’s 9 speed while the Claris is 8 speed. Both have an 11–34 cassette but the jumps will be pretty big on the Claris. The Sora should also have slightly better quality and finish (the Claris is really the absolutely lowest Shimano road groupset).

How much money all of that is worth to you really depends on your financial situation and what kind of riding you do.

5
  • 2
    I've got Sora 9-speed 11-32 on the tourer, and both my tandem and the hybrid I just trashed have 8-speed 11-32 (at one point Alivio 11-34 on the hybrid). The 9-speed has one annoyingly large step, the 8-speed has several.
    – Chris H
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 11:54
  • So it’s not a huge difference. At the same time 200$ is also a relatively cheap price Meh. Visit the loo before you ride. $200 for the extra gear and its better spacing, and better crankset? Definitely. For 600g? Nah. Not until the body fat percentage is well down into single digits. Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 20:17
  • 1
    @AndrewHenle: 600g is almost 1% of my system weight (me+bicycle). This upgrade would almost directly translate into 1% faster climb speed and acceleration. And yes, 1% more or less might not matter, but it all adds up. When bicycle traveling you really start to hate those additional ~12kg of equipment on your rear rack. I’d never want to ride a 20kg bike (unless maybe it’s a velomobile and I live in a flat country).
    – Michael
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 21:01
  • 1
    @Michael 1% over an hour-long climb is 36 seconds. You are not going to feel that. And that's only if you, your bike, and everything else weighs in at a mere 60 kg. For anyone heavier (almost everyone), the difference is even smaller. Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 21:56
  • @AndrewHenle: It all adds up. And from a psychological point of view lighter bikes are more fun to ride. A light bike is also easier to carry up/down stairs.
    – Michael
    Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 8:19

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.