The fan commeth.
With the focus on slack geometries and big travel, the trend in the industry these days is all about speed on the ragged edge of control. But sometimes the edge gets just ragged enough to trip us up, and the proverbial fan is there to catch the flying … stuff. Magura USA's hydraulic nous shines in these moments, helping to maintain a healthy fan/matter separation that keeps us on the bike, if not always on the trail. With the MT6 Next Disc Brake Set, we've taken the liberty of combining the workman's level of Magura brake calipers and levers with rotors and mounting options suitable for virtually any ride style on any rig.
Between this generation and the last, the materials used in the MT6 levers and calipers remain largely the same, with the standout feature being the proprietary, injection-molded CarboTecture SL master cylinder. CarboTecture SL construction results in lightweight stiffness that nets more efficiency and responsiveness while braking. We like fast shifting, but shifting is a luxury. Unresponsive brakes, on the other hand, can — and have often — spelled disaster.
The master cylinder also retains its radial (perpendicular to the handlebar) configuration, because that affords the best modulation and sensitivity for the lever, and the simplified pivot hardware reduces weight while situating the alloy lever 20mm closer to the bar for those moments when the fan looms and the — you know — is flying. In the event that not even Magura's century-plus of engineering expertise can keep the rubber-side down, the reinforced bleed plug helps to ensure that the brakes will be more difficult to damage.
The calipers represent the biggest step up from the MT4 model. Though the MT6 features the same two piston design, the actual shape of the unit is both lighter and stronger. The pads are top-loaded for easy replacement, and — though the Next models are compatible with any MT brake pads — Magura pulled out the stops by engineering a new anti-friction, noise-reducing grabbing surface that enjoys more longevity than its predecessors. The included Storm SL 6-Bolt Rotors also contribute to noise reduction with a peculiar shaping on the outer edge meant to reduce squeal.
As with the top-end MT8, the MT6's caliper hose banjo is adjustable, so it's easier to route the brake's hosing to accommodate the wide range of frame designs currently on the trail. The choice of sizes for the included Storm SL lets you choose based on your own riding preference: double-up on 160s for XC riding or add a 180mm rotor for all-mountain and trail bikes. Either way, the material voided by Magura's less-is-more approach to drilling the rotors out results in a climb-happy loss of grams.