RLT 9 4-Star GRX Gravel Bike
When that yellow sign tries to warn of the pavement’s end, we know that’s where the adventure truly begins with the crunch of gravel beneath our tires. Whether we’ll be out just until sunset or for multiple days, the freedom of riding beyond the reach of skinny tires brings joy like none other. The Niner RLT GRX is purpose-built for those meanders along mountain streams and canyon walls, to propel you further than you’ve been before, with the gearing to hold up speed to make town line sprints. With massive tire clearance for rubber and the unfortunate mud spot, and comfortable geometry, the RLT offers all-road capability that’s confident, powerful, and capable.
The hydroformed aluminum tubing does a tremendous job of bringing high-performance to a price point that makes saddling up on this build completely attainable. Niner's construction process allows it to be drawn thinner with walls that don't compromise stiffness or impact resistance in key areas. Proprietary forged dropouts are designed to reduce weight and integrate the low-profile flat mount with the chainstay. One ride on the alloy RLT and the old myth that aluminum rides harshly will soon be dismayed. Niner's experience in building alloy mountain frames shines through on this design, and a surprising amount of responsiveness, quick handling, and bulletproof durability quickly come to surface shortly after clipping in. The 27.2mm carbon seatpost helps reduce vibration on rough roads causing fatigue that builds up over the hours.
This frame blends Niner's mountain geometry with the barrier hopping 'cross-specific BSB frameset. Compared to the BSB, the RLT 9 is built with longer chainstays, a lower bottom bracket, and a slacker head tube angle. What you will notice is a lower center of gravity that still has plenty of pedal clearance while cornering and a slightly stretched wheelbase for stability. Tire clearance is plentiful letting you clear 44mm meat with ease. The bike is composed on washboard descents and a hoot on singletrack.
Niner constructs RLT frames in 3 different materials, but they all feature carbon forks. This fork matches the demeanor of the frame and is no lightweight road model. The 12mm thru-axle securely anchors the front hub over the roughest roads and the stiffness prevents any rotor rub. Rack mounts are able to carry their fair share of the load and get the weight of bikepacking gear on the bike and off your back. Including the frame, the RLT has a whopping 26 frame mounts for water, bags, racks, whatever you need to get from point A to B with all your supplies on a multi-day mission.
Shimano’s gravel-specific GRX group provides precise shifting across undulating terrain, with a clutch-mechanism rear derailleur and ergonomic hoods and levers for greater comfort. A 47 / 32t crankset gives us a wide range for both the cruiser flats and the stout off-road climbs we’ll encounter as our route takes us over the pass to a new valley. Schwalbe G-One 40mm tires paired with Stan’s Grail wheels provide a capable wheelset for the RLT, ready for a variety of terrain and able to roll through and over any kind of sand or grit that comes your way.
- Explore beyond the beaten path with Niner's quintessential gravel bike
- Aluminum frame is light and durable
- Endurance geometry keeps us comfortable for the long haul
- Niner carbon fork with thru-axle for precise tracking
- Flat-mount disc brakes powerfully control speed, even when riding loaded
- Shimano's GRX drivetrain offers responsive shifting and ergonomic lever design
- Stan's wheels and Schwalbe tires give grip through varied terrain