Review: Giant Defy Advanced Pro 1 2016

giant defy advanced pro 1

Giant Defy Advanced Pro 1 Review

The Giant Defy Advanced Pro 1 is billed as an all-round, do it all bike and this latest creation certainly lives up to those expectations. There’s little not to like and for the price it sells at, there’s hard to find a better value-for-money carbon bike.


Buying new or used, you’re going to be pleasantly surprised with what your hard-earned money will get you. On the Giant Defy Advanced Pro 1, you’ll find a full Ultegra Di2 groupset, matched with Shimano’s RS785 hydraulic disc brakes. The rotors are 140mm, so plenty of stopping power there. It’s built with a compact chainset (50/34) and comes with a 11-28 cassette.

A photo posted by @juliescycles on

Since having the bike I’ve personally changed out the cassette for something larger, I’d recommend at least an 11-32. That way you’ll be going a lot easier up hills and it will help to make it the PERFECT bike. The electronic shifting is flawless as you would expect, meaning gear changes are crisp and smooth.

Along with that, you get a stock Giant Contact SL Neutral saddle and stock 25mm Giant P-SL1 tyres. As stock saddles go, this one is pretty comfortable. Of course, they’re always a personal choice but I’ve been able to get incredibly comfortable on this one and ride for hours. It’s worth trying it out for a few weeks and then make your own judgement.

giant defy advanced pro 1

The only other major thing I’ve changed is the tyres. Personally, I feel that this is an adventure/climbing/epic ride kinda bike and to be honest, the 25mm tyres aren’t going to cut it. I swapped them straight out for 28mm Continental Ultra Sport tyres. These are massively more grippy and a lot more puncture resistant. It’s also being increasingly found that wider tyres roll faster than 23mm and 25mm tyres. For me they just seem to make a lot more sense.

However, that’s one area I do have to commend the bike on. The fact it can fit 28mm tyres is impressive, but in future I’d like to be able to fit 30mm tyres on to push the bike even further to its limits.giant defy advanced pro 1

The wheels are Giants own SLR1 carbon clinchers. These are sublime. They’re light, hold their speed well and feel incredibly stiff. It’s rare to find such well-made wheels that come stock from the bike manufacturer. The only gripe with the wheels is that they’re 6 bolt and not centrelock, which means you can’t put the new flashy Shimano Ice Tech rotors on there. It’s a minor problem, nonetheless.

The ride

There’s not much to say here. The Giant Defy Advanced Pro 1, offers an unrivalled ride to anything I’ve ever ridden. It’s the most comfortable, fast bike out there in my opinion. You’re able to cruise all day, climb huge mountain passes, sprint it out with your mates or do just about anything you put your mind to. The true definition of an all-round bike.

giant defy advanced pro 1


If you’re looking for the best value-for-money bike at the moment, the Giant Defy Advanced Pro 1 is beyond a doubt the best choice out there. Since getting mine I haven’t looked back and am constantly surprised with just how good the bike is. There’s a few minor things I would recommend changing out but these are all to meet your own individual riding style.giant defy advanced pro 1

Priced very competitively, the Giant Defy range is what I would recommend to both complete beginner riders and even the most seasoned riders. It can take almost anything you’ll throw at it and it will be one of your best purchases as a cyclist.

Final Verdict
  • Giant Defy Advanced Pro 1


Superb bike. If you get the chance, test ride it and you’ll be struggling to not pull out your credit card so you can take it home!


    • Your knees will be thankful for it! I just screwed in the B-screw and installed a longer chain to accommodate for the 32t. Hope that helps!

      • Thanks! That does, have got the cassette and chain ready to go.

        Going to see if I can find a way on Di2 of stopping me accidentally putting gears into big ring at the front and back at same time


    • Hi! I run 11-32 on all my bikes with a short cage and it works perfect. I can even back pedal in big-big. The only thing you might need is a slightly longer chain but this varies bike to bike. Depending on how the rear derailleur is set up you might need to screw the b-screw in to create some more space for the 32 cassette. The process takes a couple of minutes in total.

      Shimano say it doesn’t work but I’ve met hundreds of people who run a short cage with an 11-32 and their gears are as smooth as any.

        • No worries! Haha, unless you live where there are no hills I recommend everyone to use at least an 11-32 🙂 Much more friendly on your knees that way too.

      • that’s interesting…I just bought my Defy Advanced Pro 1 and im waiting for my Long Cage RD because i asked them to throw a 32 on it…maybe should of stayed with the short. Oh well….

        • Ah yeah pretty much every bike shop/component manufacturers say it can’t be done but they’re all wrong. Short cage derailleurs have slightly better shifting but nothing at all wrong with a long cage! Enjoy spinning!

          • Totally agree. I have the same bike with 11-32 cassette and slightly longer chain. The original short derailleur works fine. Being a bit older than you youngsters I also have extra gear shifters on the bars at the top situated near the steering post. With this set up I find gear changes, which are already perfect, even easier to operate. The Di2 set up is simply sensational where ever I hold the bars. on top, on the hoods, or on the drops gear changers are within reach. Now the bike is perfect and the best I’ve ever ridden. I am an admitted Giant fan they do make the best.
            This bike really needs trying before you look elsewhere. Thank you

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