When the time came to examine whether to give the V10 27.5-inch wheels, Santa Cruz turned to the Syndicate, who rode the prototypes, gave feedback, and ultimately raced the bike on the World Cup circuit. By the time the season was over, the new bike had garnered the 2014 World Cup title, and a World Champs medal. Those accolades speak for themselves.
The 6th generation of Santa Cruz’s flagship model now offers 216mm / 8.5” of travel in two adjustable geometry positions:
High: 64° headtube angle / 360mm bottom bracket height.
Low: 63.5° headtube angle / 353mm bottom bracket height.
The shock rate has been tuned to be more linear and deliver consistent damping throughout the travel. Carbon lay-up analysis and frame shape optimization allowed for more efficient use of material, and the savings were then reinvested into other areas to ensure the bike withstands Ratboy’s huge flat landings. The front triangle and swingarm sport larger-diameter sections. The new frame benefits from a slightly longer reach to suit evolving rider preferences. However, Santa Cruz felt they had always struck a good balance with chainstay length, so focused on maintaining this dimension when accommodating larger wheels.
By using a slightly-less-expensive carbon fiber, we were able to put performance within reach of more riders than ever before, lifting the race pace of World Cup athletes and privateers alike. The stiffness, durability, and strength are identical between the two materials, but the C-level carbon weighs in at about 370 grams more than the top-end, CC carbon.