Review: Scott Plasma 5 Superbike
images by Nick Salazar
Mar 16, 2015  hits 281,615

Details » More shots of all the beautiful pieces of this very clever bike.

After months of time with the bike, here is our in-depth review of the Scott Plasma 5. The Plasma 5, in my opinion, is very likely every bit as good in the wind tunnel as any other top-tier bike, and has some very nice tri-specific features to boot. It's a gorgeous machine, from tip to tail, and rides beautifully. I've been spending the last four months or so getting to know this machine inside and out, learning all its features, pitfalls, and pleasant surprises, and I'm finally ready to write. Like any machine with highly-integrated components, there are ups and downs to the proprietary nature of its parts. Take a look at the full article for all the ins and outs.


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Tags » frames,  plasma5,  rigs,  scott

Complete Bike - Tri Mode 

The Scott Plasma 5 is one of the latest generation of superbikes to feature a whole lot of integration up front. In its debut year, it was ridden to a World Championship victory by Sebastian Kienle, Scott's marquis athlete. This section shows the bike with its +45mm stem and the integrated bottle/storage unit that go with it.

  • Complete Bike - Tri Mode
  • Complete Bike - Tri Mode
  • Complete Bike - Tri Mode
  • Complete Bike - Tri Mode
  • Complete Bike - Tri Mode
  • Complete Bike - Tri Mode
  • Complete Bike - Tri Mode
  • Front end: high-stack with bottle.

Complete Bike - Low-Stack TT Mode 

The Plasma 5 can also be built with a lower-stack +0mm stem for those who need a lower position. However, in this configuration is cannot use the integrated bottle or storage mode. But it's VERY clean, and I really like the look in this mode.

  • Complete Bike - Low-Stack TT Mode
  • Complete Bike - Low-Stack TT Mode
  • Complete Bike - Low-Stack TT Mode
  • Complete Bike - Low-Stack TT Mode
  • Complete Bike - Low-Stack TT Mode
  • Complete Bike - Low-Stack TT Mode
  • Complete Bike - Low-Stack TT Mode
  • Front end: low-stack setup.
  • Complete Bike - Low-Stack TT Mode
  • Complete Bike - Low-Stack TT Mode

Bars, Stem 

The Plasma 5 uses an integrated version of the Profile Design Aeria bar, and an integrated stem to match. The stem is available in the stock +45mm version, or a +0mm version that can be purchased separately, but the low version isn't compatible with the bike's integrated aero bottle.

  • Bars, Stem
  • Bars, Stem
  • Bars, Stem
  • Bars, Stem
  • Bars, Stem
  • Bars, Stem
  • Bars, Stem
  • Bars, Stem
  • Bars, Stem
  • Bars, Stem
  • This is the low-stack stem that allows for more aggressive positions.
  • This is the low-stack stem that allows for more aggressive positions.
  • This is the low-stack stem that allows for more aggressive positions.
  • This is the low-stack stem that allows for more aggressive positions.
  • Low-stack +0mm stem (left) vs. high-stack +45mm stem (right).

Integrated Bottle 

The integrated bottle is a very slick and usable aerodynamic feature, and something triathletes have wanted to see for years. The only real downside is that it's not compatible with the low-stack stem. The bottle has a number of somewhat difficult-to-install rubber pieces (I wish they were all just one piece), but once on the bike it's a really cool feature.

  • Integrated Bottle
  • Integrated Bottle
  • Integrated Bottle
  • Integrated Bottle
  • Integrated Bottle
  • Integrated Bottle

Integrated Storage 

The integrated storage unit forms a perfect aero match with the rest of the front end, and has quite a lot of space to store gels, tools, tires, etc. Even better is that Scott used the industry-standard boss spacing, so that you could optionally mount any other top tube storage unit you wanted. This could be nice if you run the bike in low-stack TT mode, because then you could put on a storage box with a rounded leading edge, like some of the units from XLAB, or the carbon unit we featured from Glen Alden.

  • Integrated Storage
  • Integrated Storage
  • Integrated Storage
  • Integrated Storage
  • Integrated Storage
  • Here's a view in tri mode with the box taken off.

Brakes 

The Plasma 5 uses custom integrated TRP centerpull brakes that completely hide from the wind. These brakes are built on the Shimano Direct-Mount standard. But in an awesome and very thoughtful move, Scott also included a standard brake boss on the front of the bike. This means that if, for example, your brake gets damaged in travel, you could easily bolt on a standard brake as a last-minute replacement. In my case, I installed a TriRig Omega, which even fit underneath the aero cover after a small modification.

  • Brakes
  • Brakes
  • Brakes
  • Brakes
  • Brakes
  • Brakes
  • Brakes
  • Brakes
  • Brakes
  • Brakes
  • Brakes

Details 

More shots of all the beautiful pieces of this very clever bike.

  • Details
  • Details
  • Details
  • Details
  • Details
  • Details
  • Details
  • Details
  • Details
  • Details
  • Details
  • Details
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  • Details
  • Details

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