Fulfilling high expectations.
If you've had a chance to ride a Santa Cruz Hightower, you're probably not surprised by the decision to come back with a 2018 model to keep the linage going. With just slacked out enough angles, The Santa Cruz Hightower Carbon CC 27.5+ X01 Eagle complete mountain bike is a burly all mountain bike that is eager to gobble up rocks and climb to the top of mountains with ease. With 27.5+ wheels, this model has a huge contact patch for gripping the trail and sending it down the mountain at warp speeds. An excellent option for the rider who's riding choices is as varied as it gets, the Hightower is a bike capable of being just as versatile as you are.
When not much is certain about the trail unfolding in front of you, other than the countless miles you plan to cover, the Hightower truly excels. Diverse conditions call for a bike that's adaptable, poised and confidence inspiring, and with that in mind the Hightower is designed with a reversible "flip chip" that enables you to swap back and forth from a 27.5+ to 29in wheelset. The flip chip relaxes the head angle when in its low setting by half a degree, and lowers the bottom bracket which is ideal for setting it up with the slightly larger outer diameter of 29 inch wheels. Since 27.5+ wheels sit just slightly smaller in circumference, especially when taking into account the lower PSI they run, you simply flip the chip into High to allow for the necessary clearance of your bottom bracket and the trail beneath you.
5.3 inches of supple suspension smooths your ride out with the latest iteration of Santa Cruz's VPP technology. Counter-rotating links are arranged carefully to resist activation by pedaling, eliminating as much pedal bob as possible, but working to ramp suspension offering more midstroke support than before. This means you won't soak through all suspension on the smaller rocks and logs before you hit that big drop, the result is a nearly bottomless suspension feel, while remaining lively and offering excellent square edge bump compliance.
With suspension design aimed at covering the entire mountain with ease, it's critical to be paired with geometry that's also intended to dominate all of the various terrain it covers. While many bikes in its category push certain measurements farther, the Hightower is somewhat more restrained, and in this case, that’s a very good thing. Finding the perfect balance between light and nimble steering for precarious and technical climbs, along with surefooted descending that you can trust on blown out berms can be quite the challenge, but with a 67 degree head angle that harmony is achieved. The stubby chainstays increase the rear ends playful and lively characteristics for quick turning, but aren't so short that they lose control on steep climbs. A low bottom bracket keeps your center of gravity low and feeling connected to the bike for bombproof descents on rough and rowdy terrain.
The Hightower is built using Santa Cruz’s top tier CC carbon fiber construction. By using some of the finest, and strongest, raw materials available, Santa Cruz is able to make its CC level frames extremely lightweight, while maintaining outstanding impact resistance, exceptional stiffness, and just the right amount of finely tuned flex to cancel out trail chatter. Of course, balancing these factors requires true mastery of carbon fiber, and the design team at Santa Cruz has proven time and time again that their command of carbon fiber construction is unsurpassed in the bike industry. The result is a frame that will hold up to years of hard riding, will provide a comfortable ride, and will do so at a very competitive weight.
Santa Cruz cherry picks some of the best components available for this particular build. From the FOX 36 FLOAT Performance Elite fork, paired with the FLOAT DPX2 Performance Elite DPS shock. On-the-fly adjustments are easy to make with the flip of a lever, and the stroke is supple and supportive. SRAM’s exceptional X01 Eagle 12 speed groupset provides the gear range necessary to venture beyond the well-groomed singletrack and into the backcountry, while the Guide RSC brakes provide stopping power when you turn the corner to find a moose in the trail. The Rockshox Reverb dropper post enables the necessary on-the-fly saddle height adjustment, while the Santa Cruz carbon fiber handlebar offers a perfectly tuned balance of stiffness and flex that simply surpasses many of the best aftermarket carbon fiber handlebars available.
- Challenge the mountain with a trail bike built to conquer
- 5.3in of supple, VPP tuned suspension for versatile riding
- 74-degree seat tube angle optimizes pedaling efficiency
- Longer reach shifts weight forward for better traction
- Plus tires offer extra traction and support in your turn
- Carbon CC frame saves weight without sacrificing strength
- Adjustable flip-chip enables compatibility with 29 inch and 27.5 Plus wheels