Santa Cruz Bicycles Bantam R AM Complete Mountain Bike $2,899.00
Packs a big punch.
Santa Cruz’s VPP bikes may garner most of the attention, but the California brand has been pumping out shred-ready single pivots for two decades now. And in case you’re wondering what “shred-ready” looks like, check out the Bantam R AM Complete Mountain Bike. With geometry based off the esteemed Solo, and a bulletproof single pivot chassis, it’s a trail beast that’s ready to take seasons' worth of abuse, and come back begging for more.
While the Bantam is a simple machine, don’t let that fool you into thinking that it’s unrefined. Its burly aluminum tubeset will take a beating, without being unreasonably heavy. Like Santa Cruz’s VPP bikes, it runs on super-stiff collet hardware, which has the added benefit of being easy to service. Further enhancing the stiffness is a 12x142mm rear thru axle. The 30.9mm seat tube offers compatibility with dropper posts — should you choose to upgrade. And with its aggressive geometry, that may very well be the first component change on the list. Its tapered head tube makes room for a tapered fork — significantly improving front end stiffness, especially under braking. The result is a bike that’s simple on the surface, but will allow you to ride circles around people on much more expensive setups.
Santa Cruz’s R AM kit starts off with an Evolution series FOX FLOAT CTD rear shock, which is nicely matched by the RockShox Sektor Gold 130mm travel fork. The drivetrain is a Shimano blend, pulling the front derailleur and crankset from the Deore group, while the shifters and rear derailleur come from the workhorse SLX groupset. Stopping duties are handled by ultra-reliable Shimano Deore brakes. The cockpit consists of a Race Face Ride bar, stem, and seatpost, which is topped with a WTB Volt saddle. The wheels are handbuilt at Santa Cruz and consist of SRAM hubs laced with DT spokes to WTB rims, and they’re wrapped in Maxxis High Roller II tires for all-conditions grip.
The Santa Cruz Bantam R AM Complete Mountain Bike is available in four sizes, from Small to X-Large, and in the colors Black/white and Green/white.
Santa Cruz Bicycles
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