Review of Scott Contessa Addict RC15.

A bike that fits a female professional peloton while attracting recreational riders

Contents

Scott Contessa Addict RC 15 Female’s Road Bike

Scott offers a range of bikes in women-specific productions, labelled Contessa.  And while the addict is Scott’s endurance machine, pacier riders should consider the more aggressive, lightweight Aero Addict RC released in 2019 as part of the premium Contessa Signature collection.

Scott Contessa Addict RC15 features the class-top modern race bike you expect from aerodynamically optimised carbon-fibre construction, integrated cable routing, 12-speed electronic gearing, hydraulic disc brakes and mid-section carbon.  – Fibre wheelset.

The finishing kit comes courtesy of Scott’s internal unit brand Syncros, including a women-specific saddle.  The bike, which is a contender for our 2022 Women’s Bike of the Year award, comes in a matte black and matte green option.

Scott Contessa Addict RC 15 Specifications and Details

The wheels are mounted on Schwalbe One race-guard tires. 

The updated Addict RC frameset focuses on aerodynamic benefits, rigidity and compliance, but also reduces weight, according to Scott.

The resulting construction is said to be 15 per cent harder than the previous iteration, thanks to the ‘considered’ carbon-fibre lay-up, which increases bottom bracket stiffness and power transfer in turn.

The revamped ultra-light seat clamp design has contributed to eliminating a drop in weight (12g).  And Scott used his patented airfoil tube design, abandoned seatstays and integrated cables in front to reduce traction.

Gearing is supplied by Shimano’s 12-speed Altegra D2 with a compact 50/34-tooth crankset attached to an 11-30-tooth cassette.

Shimano’s 12-speed Ultegra Di2, with its E-tube app, handles gearing. 

It can be customised via the Shimano e-tube mobile app, including synchronous shift (which automatically switches between chains when you switch the rear to prevent cross-chain) and battery levels.

Although the bike uses hydraulic disc brakes, these electronic Altegra D2 hoods are wonderfully ergonomic and significantly thinner than their mechanical counterparts, which is especially useful for riders with short hands.

It is no wonder that the Altegra Hydraulic Brakes and 160mm Rotors go with Scott Disk-only Addict RC with powerful, reliable and responsive braking.

 

Switching to Ultegra hydraulic disc brakes results in more powerful and responsive stopping performance. 

The combination of Shimano Ice Tech rotors and brake pads with heat radiation fins may be off limits for most European rides, but if you go abroad and hit the mountains, you will definitely enjoy the benefits of a long, fast slope.

The Addict RC15 Syncros Capital 1.0 has a 35mm rim depth on mid-section carbon-fibre wheels.

The synchros branding is subtle and can only really be noticed with a series of glass dots detailing the letters on the matte carbon rims.  Classy.

Syncros Capital 1.0 Carbon Wheels

Separately sold, these 24-spoke climbing wheels retail for £ 1,219 and weigh in at 1,574g, thin but not exceptional.

Standard 12mm thru-axles are specified and the bike is fitted with a removable 24g axle lever for easy wheel removal, which doubles as a t25 Torx key.

The 21mm inner rim diameter is wider than most conventional road wheels and measures 30mm when fitted with 28mm tires.

 

There is a woman-specific saddle in the shape of a synchros cellista. 

The rims are tubeless-compatible, not supplied tires, so keep that in mind if you’re planning a tubeless setup for your road ride.  The rubber comes courtesy of Schwalbe with its popular One Race Guard guards, but the tubeless-ready equivalents retail for £ 54 each.

Scott has a strong reputation for leading the way in full cable integration, although the model uses the synchros creston iC bar and trunk, instead of the one-piece Creston iC cockpit found on the Unisex RC Pro and RC Ultimate models.

Electronic cables and brake hoses enter the carbon-fibre handlebar into the shifters, through the trunk and headset, and then into the frame, so there is nothing on display.

Scott claims the design is ‘mechanic-friendly’ and the world’s first, you can remove the trunk without cutting the brake hoses.

The Creston 1.0 compact handlebar has been tested and has room to mount your bike computer. 

The detachable headset spacers mean you can easily increase or decrease the position of the trunk without being affected by the cable. And if now no longer provided here, you could choose the Syncros Computer Mount, made in partnership with K-Edge, which bolts at once to the faceplate.

The sleek look is complete with a seamless trunk cap, held in place by magnets.  Most inventions await in the fork, where the leading edge magnetic cover brake calliper mounts bolt cleverly.

Scott Contessa Addict RC 15 Geometry

The geometry matches Scott’s equivalent of unisex bikes. 

Like most women-specific models, Contessa models share the same geometry as unisex bikes.  The horizontal upper tube means that the standover is higher compared to the compact designs, which may affect the lower riders.

Due to the more aggressive position I have experienced a degree of soft tissue discomfort when down in the drops.

It’s unrealistic to expect bike brands to stock women-specific saddles to suit all riders, but the good news is that there are plenty of saddles from Syncros if you need to test with opportunity shapes and widths.

Scott Contessa Addict RC 15 Ride Impressions

Addict RC 15 A race bike is undeniable. 

The Addict RC is a race bike, and you know for sure when you swing a leg with an aggressive position rather than a straight seat designed with the Michelton-Scott (now Team Bike Exchange-Jacobo) race teams.

I have driven 40mm headset spacers in my size (I’m standing at 5ft 4in), so there is still room to ease down.

At 7.5kg, Scott claims the addict RC is “made for climbers”, but the bike has a lot of thought about aerodynamic features in line with recent road trends.

One of the ride-quality highlights is how well the addict maintains the RC momentum.

On a flat, smooth surface, the movement is effortless and it is exceptionally fast, saving you energy for the next ascent or sprint.  Take Lorena Vibes from the DSM team, who have already scored several victories this year on their Addict RC.

Shifting with the Altegra D2 is lightning fast, and I’ve played well with the settings via the e-tube app, including experimenting with synchro shift.

 

Shifting is very fast with the implementation of the e-tube application Synchro Shift function. 

We spend most of our time in 1x setups for gravel riding and mountain biking, and we’re interested in this function, which automatically converts the front derailleur to the best cassette position so you can enjoy the benefit of 2x gearing without worrying.  Side chain.

Alas, it didn’t look as good as I expected, especially when switching to a smaller chainring.  There was a lag before moving in the back, which really put me out of rhythm on the mounts.

For a general ride, we appreciate the low gearing setup: Murhill’s steep slope near Bath in the South West of England was a definite struggle, for example, but I’m sure this gear combination would be ideal for pure racing.

I really enjoyed the shape of the Creston 1.0 compact handlebar.  The round profile beside the trunk means I fit my standard vehicle mount, but then the handlebar will flatten to a more moderate aero profile at the top, which is great for relaxing your palms when climbing.

The 38cm width is perfect for our size, and is compatible with what we ride on our own bike.

The addict took the RC from the smooth surfaces to the British rear lanes, and the bike handled the integrated roads and light gravel without any hassle.  There was also no puncture nose from the 30mm wide tires, and I dropped some pressure to give it a less rigid ride experience.

Race-ready premium build to give riders a competitive edge

From an aesthetic standpoint, the Addict RC really turns heads.

I like the easy-to-clean glass paint job with the flashing design just a little closer to you, and the water-wave detailing on the fork is a nice touch that brings the Contessa’s signature range together.

The matte top-tube finish is ‘interesting’, and I found it a bit difficult to make it look clean.

Integrated cabling looks really neat on the front, though I need more time to check if the trunk design is as mechanic-friendly as Scott claims.

Product Specifications

Product Price GBP £ 5699.00

Weight 7.5kg (S)

Brand Scott

Features

Available sizes are   L, M, S, XS, XXS,

Handlebar Syncros Creston 1.0 Compact Carbon

Tires Schwalbe One 28mm Race-Guard

Trunk syncros RR 1.5

Shifter Shimano Ultegra

Seatpost Syncros Duncan 1.0 Aero Carbon

Saddle Syncros Cellista 1.5 V-Concept Cutout

Rear Derailleur Shimano Ultegra D2 Electronic Shift System

Front Derailleur Shimano Ultegra D2 Electronic Shift System

Lower bracket Shimano

Frame HMX Carbon

Fork HMX Carbon

Cranks Shimano Ultegra, 50,34

Chain Shimano Ultegra

Cassette Shimano Ultegra, 11-30

Brakes Shimano Ultegra Hydraulic Disc

Wheels Syncros Capital 1.0 35mm

Women’s Bike of the Year |  Evaluate / how we investigated

While many major bike brands have shifted away from women-specific models, our 2022 test focuses on three brands that continue to produce women’s road bikes.

It includes Liv, a brand that offers real women-specific bikes from Frame Up based on women’s fit data, and Cube and Scott, which offers women-specific builds.  It is worth noting that many brands offer an improved range of unisex bikes.

Mounts and steep slopes allowed us to test the bike’s climbing prowess and assess their performance in descending.

With a wide range of prices, which range from £ 1,749 to £ 5,699, the value of money is key to testing rather than determining how the bikes work.

Pros and Cons

Pros: Carries speed without effort and always turns heads

Cons: Offensive race position may not suit all riders

Scott Contessa Addict RC15 reasoning.

Priced at £ 5,699, the Scott Contessa Addict RC 15 features a number of innovations to help ensure this substantial price tag.

Combined with fully integrated cable routing, slick frame features, electronic gearing and lightweight and aerodynamic qualities, the bike’s impressive weight is less than moderately priced.

Riding emotion is obviously racy in terms of aggressive geometry and gearing, so the bike is best suited to riders with competitive ambitions, rather than daily cyclists, who may prefer endurance-focused addicts.

 Our rating is 8.0 out of 10 stars

sources Scott

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