SANTA CRUZ BICYCLES Megatower Carbon CC X01 Eagle Coil Reserve Mountain Bike
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MEGATOWER CARBON CC X01 EAGLE COIL RESERVE COMPLETE BIKE
While many of us around the office have been satisfied by the enduro offerings of years past, there are others who have been craving something bigger, bolder, and faster. This shouldn’t be a surprise, as we’ve seen the sport evolve into a rock-gobbling charge fest that challenges DH races of years past. The issue was finding the right bike to fill that gap. After two years of designing, tweaking, and dialing, we’re beyond stoked for a bike that slots itself nicely into our bike lineup empty spot with Santa Cruz’s new enduro-ready warhammer — the Megatower Carbon CC X01 Eagle Coil Reserve Complete Bike . Its lower link driven VPP platform is practically begging for a coil shock, dialing you in with the extra-plush feel and traction that you’ll only find from a coil, like the RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate spec’d here to satisfy all of your enduro races, and beckon you to test your limits on DH laps.
We may just be speculating, but it seemed to us that the LT was a quick fix to get Santa Cruz’s riders competitive in the enduro races, so it’s natural that its followed by a beast of a bike that started its life as an enduro weapon from the ground up. The Megatower represents a two-year project that Santa Cruz’s designers dedicated to addressing the needs of bigger hitting enduro and trail riders. A trained eye will be able to spot the immediate similarities to the newer lower-link driven VPP design that we see on the Nomad, Bronson, and V10, which, when paired with a generous 160-millimeters of rear travel, you’ll find more linear suspension curve for increased sensitivity off the top of the stroke, and more traction and small-bump compliance under braking, while maintaining reliable mid-stroke support and bottom out progression. The revised suspension maintains the same efficient pedaling and climbing performance of previous generations of VPP while offering unprecedented, glued-to-the-trail grip, enabling you to push your limits with more confidence than ever. As an added bonus, the revised suspension design lets the bike play well with an array of different shocks from various brands as well as air or coil springs.
When it comes to filling an appetite for enduro, it doesn’t surprise us that Santa Cruz has been cooking up a heavy-hitting 29er to add to their arsenal. Big wheels simply carry more speed in almost every riding situation, and with the modern geometry of today, these bikes are free to exploit their high-speed stability through chundery sections lined with old growth pines. Combined with the agile, nimble, and comfortable-in-the-air feel that you covet, you’ll find the recipe for an ideal endo race bike. This happens to be right where the Megatower lands, with some of the longest reach numbers, steepest seat tube angles, and longest wheelbases you’ll find from the firm’s headquarters, this trusty steed is one progressive 29er that begs to be let loose for berm blasting at warp speed.
The Megatower tucks itself nicely into Santa Cruz’s lineup right in between the DH World Cup annihilating V10, and the venerable Nomad when it comes to rock-gobbling hairy lines on demanding trails, however, we think that’s just one facet of the story. Versatility is the name of the game in modern bikes, and while at first glance it appears to be a bike that’s just built for hard hits, unlike the V10, we would whole-heartily toss a leg over the Megatower on trails that challenge us with long climbs that make us earn our descents. This comes from the lively feel of VPP that offers a reliable pedaling platform, and a steep seat tube angle that keeps you neatly perched for moments when you need to hammer the pedals to power up root-latticed switchbacks that lead you to the tree line.
The Megatower possesses a flip chip for high and low geometry positions, but unlike flip chips on previous Santa Cruz machines, it’s not there to toggle between plus and 29er wheel sizes as we’ve seen in the past. Instead, it allows for just subtle tweaks to the bike’s geometry (head tube and seat tube angles and bottom bracket height alter by just 0.3-degrees and 3mm respectively between high and low positions) and slightly adjusts the kinematics of the VPP suspension platform. The bike is more linear in its “high” position, allowing you to utilize all the travel and have a slightly more agile bike on epic pedal fest across technical, natural terrain. To contrast, the “low” setting is slightly more progressive, perfect for a bit of big hit bottom out resistance in the bike park and on burly shuttle runs. Furthermore, the chainstay length is adjustable by up to 10mm letting taller cyclists ride “between the wheels” or for those favoring the ultimate in stability during high speed runs, to position the rear wheel further back, lengthening the wheelbase. Those who want a nimbler ride or pedal on tighter singletrack can position the wheel more forward. The bike ships in the short position and nothing unusual is required for this setting. The brake mount is Post-Mount 180mm and includes an adaptor to work with the spec’d 200mm rotor size. Included with the bike is a special brake adaptor to adjust to the long setting. This setting only works with 200mm or larger rotors and includes the long derailleur hanger necessary for this further rearward position.
The frame features include the now industry standard Boost spacing that improves wheel stiffness as well as frame strength. It’s designed for 1x drivetrains only with a max chainring size of 36 teeth and has ISCG-05 mounts for a bash guard and chain guide use. It only fits 29in wheels with a tire clearance up to 2.5 inches. Returning Santa Cruz frame favorites include the simple to install and easy to keep quiet 73mm threaded bottom bracket shell and tough frame protection pieces including a lower downtube protector, downtube shuttle guard, and the new, V10-derived chainstay protector that keeps your investment safe, looking like new, and quiet on the trails.
This X01 build gets a RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate shock out back (please see tech specs for spring rates) and a reduced offset FOX 36 Float Performance Elite fork to absorb the drops, chunky rock gardens, and relentless root lattices you encounter on your rides. SRAM’s X01 Eagle 12-speed group shifts consistently across its wide range of gears, providing plenty of ratios for climbing and descending. Brakes also come from SRAM by way of the Code RSCs bringing the bike down from speed with the power, modulation, and confidence of 4-pistons and 200mm rotors. Final standout details include the excellent Reserve 30 rims that have proven to be some of the toughest and best riding carbon hoops on the market, laced up neatly to Industry Nine’s top tier Torque hubs for near instant engagement when power output matters. Santa Cruz is so confident in the durability of its carbon hoops that it backs it with a lifetime warranty just as it does with all its frames.
- A wagon-wheeled steed that demonstrates enduro authority
- Longer, lower, and slacker geometry for high-speed stability
- V10-inspired suspension with a lower link-driven coil shock
- Adjustable flip-chip alters shock progression for personalization
- Carbon CC frame reduces weight without sacrificing strength
- RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate shock adds a new level of plushness
- Shuttle guard, DT guard, and V-10 inspired chainstay guard protects
- 76-76.8 degree seat tube angle improves climbing and pedaling efficiency
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