First Look: Cannondale 2015 F-Si 29 Carbon and Black Inc XTR Di2 version

29er Cross Country

For 2015, Cannondale is on a roll. Hot on the heels of the recent launch of the all new 27.5 Jekyll all-mountain machine and their new Trigger 27.5 and new Lefty SuperMax fork, Cannondale announced another new bike today in Balingen, Germany in advance of the UCI World Cup XC race this weekend in nearby Albstadt.

Pro road race sensation Peter Sagan gets dirty with pro mountain biker Marco Fontana on a pair of the new XC bikes from Cannondale.

Sharp-eyed followers of the World Cup circuit may have seen sneak peeks of this bike under Cannondale Factory racers Marco Fontana and Manuel Fumic. Cannondale has taken their System Integration approach in creating a complete redesign of the already popular and successful F29 carbon racing hardtail. In order to make a great bike even better, Cannondale sought to make the F-Si lighter, stiffer and faster.

Key to reaching these goals, Cannondale started with a new frame and integrated improvements to both current and new technologies like the all-new Ai Drivetrain (Asymmetric Integration), improved 29er geometry, new Lefty 2.0 fork, SAVE 2 seatpost, Ballistec carbon and Hollowgram cranks.

Cannondale - F-Si 29 Carbon in Garda, Italy

Standout features include the super short chainstays (429mm, shortest chainstays for a 29er), short head tube (allows small and medium frames to keep the handlebar height reasonable), asymmetric offset rear triangle and drivetrain (that allows for a stiffer, low bottom bracket height (12.1″), evenly dished rear wheel and the option to run 2x drivetrain), 55mm offset on the new Lefty fork (which creates less trail than the average 29er and helps lessen the “slow and heavy” steering feel often attributed to running 29 inch wheels), Save 2 seat post (designed to provide a bit of comfort on this race ready hardtail) and an all new, sophisticated carbon layup for fine tuning the ride characteristics and stiffness at multiple frame points. For a full list of technical features and highlights, see the full information provided by Cannondale below.

Cannondale F-Si Carbon 29 frame and fork

The 2015 Cannondale F-Si 29 Carbon will be available in 4 models from the top-of-the-line F-Si 29 Carbon Black Inc (with Shimano XTR Di2 electronic drivetrain), F-Si 29 Carbon Team (with Lefty 2.0 Carbon XLR 100 29 fork, SRAM 1×11 drivetrain and Enve carbon wheels), the F-Si 29 Carbon 1 (with Lefty 2.0 Carbon XLR 100 29 fork, Shimano/SRAM 2x drivetrain and Mavic CrossMax SLR 29 Lefty wheels), and the F-Si 29 Carbon 2 (with Lefty 2.0 PBR 100 29 fork, SRAM X01 1×11 drivetrain and Stan’s ZTR Arch EX 29/Lefty SM/Formula wheels). Pricing has not yet been set (with the exception of the Black Inc, read below). The new Cannondale F-Si 29 Carbons will start shipping in August.

Cannondale Lead Engineer Peter Denk explains the company’s systems integration approach that led to the new F-Si 29.

Cannondale F-Si 29 Carbon Black Inc with XTR Di2

Cannondale F-Si 29 Black Inc

Hot on the heels of the new announcement from Shimano about the XTR Di2 electronic drivetrain for mountain bikes, Cannondale announced their Di2 equipped F-Si 29 called the Black Inc. If you are not familiar with Black Inc, we covered the previously released Black Inc Scalpel 29 here. A crossover from their road bikes, Black Inc means that model is the top-of-the-line with all the bells and whistles plus a bit more. In this case, the bit more is the XTR Di2 electronic shifting drivetrain. Di2 has been available for about five years on road bikes and this is the first iteration to reach the dirt side.

Cannondale F-Si 29 Black Inc Cannondale F-Si 29 Black Inc

Main upgrades between the Black Inc and the Team models (aside from the 2×11 Di2 drivetrain) include Enve Carbon M50 XC rims, Chris King hubs, Enve carbon bars, XTR brakes and an Enve carbon seatpost. The Black Inc also features slick internal cable routing for all those electric wires.

Buying the best is never cheap, and the Cannondale F-Si 29 Carbon Black Inc is no exception. Like the other three models it will be available in August and will have an MSRP of $10,400.

Continue to Page 2 for more info and full photo gallery ยป

About the author: Gregg Kato

Gregg Kato studied journalism and broadcasting in college while working many different jobs including deejaying, driving a forklift and building web sites (not all at the same time). Kato enjoys riding local Santa Cruz trails. Besides being an avid mountain biker, he is also a motorcycle fanatic. Two wheels, one Passion.

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  • The Pittsburgh Left says:

    Interesting bike. Am I right in thinking this requires a special wheel? The asymetrical rear would make a better wheel, but it would need to be built up special for this bike since the center plane of the bike does not intersect the center of the hub, it would instead intersect the center of the flanges (same length spokes can be used). Single speed hubs don’t have the different length spoke problem, but would if built for this bike. a SS hub would have longer spokes on the drive side if built for this bike. I guess it’s not an issue since a standard hub can be used for SS and this bike allows equal spoke lengths on a standard hub. Can this bike even convert to SS?

  • Jeff Sayegh says:

    Can’t wait for the 27.5 version

  • Larry says:

    It will not require a special wheel or hub.. Its the way the frame is designed… Its offset..

    CANNOT WAIT TO GET ONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • J-Flo says:

    Nice to see new efforts at innovation on the hardtail front. But I am not sure the world needed yet another rear wheel standard. The specs aren’t clear; apparently the rear axle is a 142mm with QR? As stiff as a 142x12mm? Riiight. They say the QR also allows a lighter rear hub, but they spec a DT350 on the rear of the top end Black Inc. model. That’ a good hub, but not light and I am afraid this part of the story does not add up.

    Even if the hub is a standard 142mm hub it will need custom end caps and the spoke lacing will be custom for this frame; so the rear wheel will not be interchangeable with other 142mm frames. Maybe that doesn’t matter because the front wheel is not standard anyhow.

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