Micka from DMCX reviews The Giant TCR Advanced SL Frame Geometry 2021.
Giant officially presented the Giant TCR Advanced SL 2021 in spring 2020. It is the 9th generation of the frame over a period of 20 years. Giant markets the frame as “Compact Road” frame as the world biggest sports bike manufacturer introduced Top Tube Sloping concept on road bike.
I want to warn you this post is about the technical review as I don’t want people to waste their time here. You will not find actual pictures or glamorous videos road test of the Giant TCR on this page. Only geometry sketches depicting all frame sizes.
Giant is the UCI Pro WorlTour Team CCC sponsor and used the feedbacks team riders lead by Greg Van Avermaet to develop the new frame design and geometry. This means it is a top level frame!
Giant fans will be able to see the TCR Advanced SL 2021 on the big three Grand Tours of 2020 that are the Giro d’Italia, Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana.
If you are a bike nerd or want to know technical details including which TCR Advanced SL frame size to pick see below what you will find here:
- Giant TCR Advanced SL 2021 frame features
- Frame geometry sketches
- Recommended size and fitting
- My analysis of the frame set
- List of Pro riders racing on the 2021 Giant TCR Advanced SL
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DMCX Reviews The Giant TCR Advanced SL Frame Geometry 2021
Giant had a big task to make the 2021 TCR Advanced SL to make it an even “better” frame than the previous model.
“Better” in the context of the TCR frame stands by a stiffer frame while reducing weight and drag.
Keep in mind Giant is the world biggest manufacturer of sports bicycle as it needs to keep its frame design it reach to general public to keep mass production effective.
That explains why the TCR Advanced SL 2021 frame do not feature full internal routing cables. Thanks to this owner can change the bar and stem more easily than the full integrated and most of the time proprietary parts.
Giant invested in new Robots to assemble “delicately” the 150 Carbon leaves that constitute the frame.
You can say Goodbye to that cliche of “children building your frame”!
The Taiwanese company started the frame re-design process with new tubes shapes. As a result “Eclipse” shaped frame tubes replace the Teardrop shaped tubes. The so-called “Eclipse” shape is round tube with a flat surface on the rear facing side.
The Eclipse shape optimizes aerodynamics and increase structural strength on the front end of the frame. The front triangle looks beefier than previous TCR version while reducing weight.
The oversized headset branded as “Overdrive 2” which is a 1 1/2” lower, 1 1/4” upper is definitely participating in the stiffness on the frame.
The rear triangle features a new designed derailleur hanger and Asymmetric chainstays.
The Bottom Bracket is the massive 86mm wide Press-Fit type which contributes in making the frame stiff.
The particularity of the TRC Advanced SL is that is feature an Integrated Seatpost. This save approximately 45g compared to a separated carbon seatpost. Beside the saved grams it does also improve frame stiffness and aerodynamic.
To support the frame stiffness a new fork has been developed too and is also looking sturdier than previous model. The fork arms have leaving plenty of space for air to flow between the the arms and the spokes. Giant calls it a Symmetric design fork and this decrease Air drag as a result.
The fork features taper steerer tube, internal cable routing, flat-mount disc brake type and 100x10mm thru axle. It is the same on all TCR Advanced SL Disc frame size.
The main differences in the 2021 Giant TCR Advanced SL frame geometry is a lower Bottom Bracket (BB).
The frame head tube, top tube and seat tubes dimensions have also been revised on all sizes.
It is good to see Giant lowering the BB height of its 2021 Giant TCR frame geometry. This is helping to lower the center of gravity and decrease drag. It is not as low as other racing frames Giant is taking a first step toward optimization.
The head tube and seat tube angles feature an open angle reflecting a nibble handling and short wheelbase. That might comes as an handicap at the end of a long ride when the rider feels tired and reactivity not as sharp as at the start and on tough road condition.
The same fork with 45mm rake and 32mm tire clearance complements all Giant TCR Advanced SL frame sizes .
Which sizes should you pick?
Giant does recommend the XS size for riders from 157cm to 169cm tall (5’2″ to 5’7″) The Top Tube is 520mm length. (Sketch above)
The S size for riders between 165cm and 175cm (5’5″ to 5’9″). The frame feature a 535mm Top Tube length. (Picture above)
The M size is recommended for rider from 171cm to 181cm (5’7″ to 5’11”). (Sketch above)
The ML size for people from 177cm to 187cm (5’10 to 6’2″). It features a 565mm Top tube length. (view sketch above)
The L size for 183cm to 193cm tall riders (6’0 to 6’4″)
The biggest available XL size is dedicated for riders 189cm to 199cm (6’2″ to 6’6″).
The 2021 Giant TCR Advanced SL frame maximum rider weight for any size is 125kg.
The seat post topper which is the connection between the saddle and the frame allows only 3 setback offset adjustment of 15, 25 and 50mm.
My analysis of the TCR Advanced SL 2021
Giant had a very difficult task of updating its top of the range road racing frame by making it lighter, stiffer and more aerodynamic.
I think did it successfully by implementing a lot or R&D and even developing new production method to stay on top of the game.
The Giant TCR Advanced SL frame is designed for racing and it is the one used by Team CCC. If you are young and aiming at racing, it is a great quality and performance frame. But if you are not aiming at racing, I recommend picking a frame with longer chainstays than 405mm.
It features sharp steering angle, short chainstays and relatively short wheelbase, the one piece seat post also adds up on the stiffness.
If I had to buy a Giant TCR frame I would pick the TCR Advanced Pro model. It it the exact same frame geometry and has a normal seatpost that you can remove or adjust fully. It is more practical to pack and carry in a travel bag or a car with limited space.
Adding the fact you save over US$ 1,000 between a LTD and PRO for less than 100g weight difference for any size makes it a great pick. With that saving you can grab some fantastic components!
List of Pro riders racing on the 2021 Giant TCR Advanced SL
Thanks to the versatility of the 2021 Giant TCR Advanced SL Disc the entire Professional Team CCC is racing on it since Spring 2020. The team is a mix of powerful Sprinters, Time trial specialists and agile climbers indicating the frame is well fitted for all riders styles.
BARTA Will 175cm
BEVIN Patrick 180cm
ČERNY Josef 188cm
DE LA PARTE Víctor 181cm
DE MARCHI Alessandro 181cm
GESCHKE Simon 171cm
GRADEK Kamil 194cm
HIRT Jan 181cm
KOCH Jonas 187cm
KOCHETKOV Pavel 184cm
MARECZKO Jakub 169cm
MASNADA Fausto 181cm
MAŁECKI Kamil 174cm
PALUTA Michał 174cm
PAUWELS Serge 177cm
ROSSKOPF Joey 186cm
SAJNOK Szymon 184cm
SCHÄR Michael 198cm
TRENTIN Matteo 179cm
VALTER Attila 186cm
VAN AVERMAET Greg 181cm
VAN HOECKE Gijs 186cm
VAN HOOYDONCK Nathan 193cm
VAN KEIRSBULCK Guillaume 191cm
VENTOSO Francisco José 180cm
WIŚNIOWSKI Łukasz 181cm
ZAKARIN Ilnur 187cm
ZIMMERMANN Georg 180cm