Cannondale released the Treadwell back in 2019, with its main selling point being the built-in Speed Sensor mounted on the front wheel. Cannondale’s app acts as a dashboard to provide information on speed, distance, number of calories burned, and even the estimation of carbon emissions saved. Furthermore, the Treadwell’s maintenance needs, sending service reminders when needed.
How does it hold up against the best hybrid bikes on the market though, and is it one of the best bikes for commuting? Having spent the past few months riding the Treadwell 3 around Bristol, running errands, pootling about town, and doing my best to pick up some speed, here’s how well it performs.
Design and specification
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The Treadwell is available in three different models – the 3, 2, and EQ – and two different frame shapes: one with a slightly sloped top tube, and one with a fully sloped top tube that basically acts as a step-through.
The particular model I tested is the Cannondale Treadwell 3 Remixte Ltd, and it has a playful aesthetic, with a step-through top tube, wide flat handlebars, plush 650b x 47mm tires, and a bold yellow-to-orange fade paint job.
The SmartForm C3 Alloy frame and steel fork are mated with a MicroSHIFT 7-speed rear derailleur and shifter, a Sunrace 11-34 cassette, and a Prowheel 38T crankset. Promax mechanical disc brakes with 160mm rotors provide the stopping power, while the alloy Cannondale wheels are shod with Maxxis DTR-1 tires, and the finishing kit can come courtesy of Cannondale itself.
Up front, the stem features Cannondale’s Intellimount, which makes it compatible with any dashboard mentioned above.
Other models in the range come with more features, such as pre-installed racks, mudguards and kickstands, but the version has been tested at the entry level in the range and is pretty basic.
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The Fitness Bike is listed on the brand’s website as a Fitness Bike, however here is where I’d disagree with the categorization. The Treadwell is more of a slow-paced pootler. Having used it to travel to meetings and appointments where I have always been running late, out there, and so in order for it to work hard, you have to work even harder.
The chunky tires definitely do a great job of smoothing out rough roads in the UK – they rack up some hefty rolling resistance, and even pump up to the maximum PSI, the bike still wants to roll at a relaxed pace.
With its step-through frame, wide and cushioned saddle, and flat handlebars with slim and comfortable grips, the Treadwell 3 Remix would be a great fit for someone who is new to cycling, or returning to it after many years off the saddle. It would also work better for someone with limited mobility. Aside from the connectivity aspect of the bike, I’d say its main selling point is its simplicity and comfort. It’s a very easy bike to ride, with only one gear shifter to worry about, and you simply have to think about shifting up or down. The gear shifter also features that you can clearly see where you are in the short range without having to glance down at your cassette – something that you don’t see very often on premium bikes, but that’s very useful for less experienced riders .
For £ 700 / $ 850, Cannondale has some cost savings somewhere, and in this case it’s on some of the components. The 7-speed MicroSHIFT gearing might feel a little clunky, and the Promax mechanical disc brakes aren’t amazing. They do the job and allow for reasonably powerful braking, but if you are used to much more powerful and premium brakes, don’t feel that great.
Having said all this, the Treadwell is not aimed at the most seasoned cyclists, and the target audience for this bike will certainly be happy with its riding capabilities, as they are not aiming to race around at speed.
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If you want to put headphones in your ears and push your body to its limits to get fit, I’d recommend opting for the Cannondale Quick instead. On the other hand, if you want a comfortable bike to pedal around town, take a leisurely ride on the weekends, and possibly add a bunch of accessories to, then the Treadwell will do what you need it to do.
|Design and aesthetics||Simple, bold and colorful||8/10|
|Components||Not the best, but not bad for the target audience||7/10|
|Performance, handling and geometry||Super comfortable, but a bit sluggish||7/10|
|Weight||Weighing 13kg it’s pretty hefty||6/10|
|Value for money||Good value for money, includes wheel sensors for easy app compatibility, although the components could be improved||8/10|
Logbook: Cannondale Treadwell 3
- Temperature: 10 to 25 degrees C
- Weather: Sun, rain, wind, cold, warm
- Road surface: Mostly paved with a little bit of gravel and canal towpath
- Route: Multiple routes around Bristol and the South West
- Rides: 30+
- Mileage: ~ 200km
Tech Specs: Cannondale Treadwell 3
- Price: £ 700 / $ 850
- Sizes: SM / LG
- Weight: 13kg (size SM with pedals)
- Frame: SmartForm C3 Alloy
- Fork: Steel
- Shifters: 7-speed MicroSHIFT
- Rear derailleur: MicroSHIFT M21L
- Crankset: Prowheel, 38T
- Cassette: Sunrace, 11-34 7-speed
- Brakes: Promax mechanical disc, 160 / 160mm rotors
- Wheels: Cannondale Disc
- Tires: Maxixis DTR-1, 650b x 47mm
- Saddle: Cannondale Treadwell
- Seatpost: Cannondale 6061 Alloy
- Stem: Cannondale 3 with Intellimount
- Handlebars: Cannondale Cruise Control riser
- Extras: Cannondale Wheel Sensor