After many years of waiting, the Atherton AM.150 is finally available for purchase. The additive manufacturing process and fully customisable sizes and geometry make it truly unique. The Brits dug deep into their bag of tricks to develop the bike and refine the innovative production process. But how does all the effort translate on the trail?

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best trail bike of 2022 – 14 models in review

Atherton AM.150 | 160/150 mm (f/r) | 15.5 kg in size 12 | € 7,699 | Manufacturer’s website

The Atherton AM.150 is a rare beast and only comes in very small numbers. What makes it really unique is the frame construction and its unique manufacturing process, which consists in bonding straight carbon tubes with 3D printed titanium lugs. This process gives Atherton great flexibility, allowing them to offer their bikes in a whopping 22 different sizes or even with a fully customised geometry. While the € 7,699 AM.150 is marketed as an enduro bike, with its 160/150 mm suspension setup (f/r) it also happens to fit into our trail bike test field rather well. That being said, at 15.5 kg, it isn’t the lightest trail bike out there. Oh, but by the way: even though the bike comes from the UK, you don’t have to pay customs when you order to Europe because it is produced in Wales and can therefore claim preferential origin.

The spec of the Atherton AM.150

The frame of the Atherton AM.150 combines straight lines and a discreet black finish, making it clear that sophisticated frame designs were the least of Atherton’s concerns. Quite obviously, the Brits weren’t too fussed about fancy frame details either, providing the AM.150 with a bottle cage but dispensing with a storage compartment and tool mount. Moreover, the chainstay protector is just a plain glued-on rubber sleeve. The production bike also features a down tube protector, but this wasn’t yet available at the time of this test.

Bringing in the big guns!
The Atherton is the only bike in the entire test field with a FOX X2 shock, which offers excellent performance and countless adjustment options.
Travel trouble
At 175 mm, the FOX Transfer dropper post offers just enough travel for a trail bike in size L and, unfortunately, can’t be inserted all the way into the frame.
With their robust casing and soft rubber compound, the Continental tires deliver a strong performance downhill. However, for a trail bike they’re more than a smidge too much!

Atherton AM.150

€ 7,699


Fork FOX 36 Factory GRIP2 160 mm
Rear Shock FOX X2 Factory 150 mm
Seatpost FOX Transfer 175 mm
Brakes SRAM CODE RSC 200/200 mm
Drivetrain SRAM X01 Eagle 1x12
Stem Renthal Apex 60 mm
Handlebar Renthal FatBar Carbon 800 mm
Wheelset Stan’s NoTubes Flow MK4 29"
Tires Continental Kryptotal FR SuperSoft DH Casing/Continental Kryptotal RE SuperSoft DH Casing 2.4/2.4

Technical Data

Size 1 12 22
Weight 15.5 kg

Tuning tip: none

Minimalist solution
This thin rubber sleeve is meant to serve as the Atherton’s chainstay protector. Anyway, it doesn’t matter, because the bike is quiet as a mouse.
Model construction
These 3D printed titanium lugs are bonded with the carbon tubes using a super strong glue.

While the components of our test bike don’t match the spec list on Atherton’s website, the Brits only produce their bikes in very small batches, so custom builds are always an option. The suspension of our bike consists of a FOX 36 Factory fork and X2 shock, which both offer good trail performance and countless adjustment options. For the cockpit, the Brits rely on component specialist Renthal, combining 800 mm FatBar carbon bars and 60 mm Apex stem. SRAM supply the CODE RSC brakes with tool-free bite point and reach adjustments and SwingLink lever, which was designed to minimise deadband and improve braking performance. Together with the big 200 mm brake rotors front and rear, they ensure powerful and reliable deceleration.

Almost like cheating
Where’s the nasty rock garden that overwhelmed all other bikes in this test? It suddenly disappeared with the Atherton!

Shifting is taken care of by a SRAM X01 Eagle drivetrain, which offers 500% gear range instead of the usual 520%, thus requiring you to work a little harder on very steep climbs. The 175 mm FOX Transfer dropper post is just long enough for a trail bike in size L and can’t be inserted all the way into the frame. The AM.150 rolls on Stan’s Flow MK4 alloy rims and Continental tires, with a Kryptotal Fr at the front and Kryptotal Re at the rear, both with SuperSoft rubber compound and tough downhill casing. Although the tires ensure excellent puncture protection and additional cushioning, they’re somewhat oversized for a trail bike. A bash guard with chain guide protects the chainring and prevents the chain from falling off.

The Atherton AM.150 combines straight lines and a discreet look. The limited production and special manufacturing process allow for an incredible number of frame geometries.

The geometry of the Atherton AM.150

Atherton offer the AM.150 in a total of 22 (yes, that’s twenty two!) different sizes. These are ordered according to the reach, which grows from 410 mm (size 1) to 530 mm (size 22) in 10 mm increments. All sizes except for the smallest ones are available in two variants, which feature different seat tube lengths and in some cases also different stack heights. As the frame size grows, the chainstay length increases and the seat tube angle steepens up. However, bottom bracket height and head angle remain consistent across the board. That being said, Atherton allow you to customise your geometry from the ground up. Our size 12 test bike combines 480 mm reach and a very short 415 mm seat tube, which should ensure plenty of freedom of movement, at least in theory! Because in practice, the dropper post can’t be inserted all the way into the frame, thus restricting freedom of movement somewhat.

Size 1 12 22
Seat tube 395 mm 415 mm 475 mm
Top tube 553 mm 616 mm 655 mm
Head tube 100 mm 125 mm 125 mm
Head angle 65.0° 65.0° 65.0°
Seat angle 77.0° 78.0° 79.0°
Chainstays 433 mm 438 mm 443 mm
BB Drop 30 mm 30 mm 30 mm
Wheelbase 1,167 mm 1,246 mm 1,308 mm
Reach 410 mm 480 mm 530 mm
Stack 619 mm 641 mm 641 mm
Shirt Troy Lee Designs Sprint Ultra | Hose Specialized Demo Pro Trail | Helmet Sweet Protection Trailblazer | Glasses Scott Sport Shield | Schuhe Giro Chamber II

The Atherton AM.150 on the trail

From the moment you swing your leg over its saddle, the Atherton is extremely comfortable. In fact, the AM.150 offers the most comfortable pedalling position in the entire test field. When riding on level ground, there’s no pressure on your hands and the front wheel always remains velcroed to the trail, even when the trail slopes up. The pedal-neutral rear suspension is very efficient, making the climb switch completely superfluous. That being said, the high system weight and soft tires cost the Atherton climbing efficiency.

The Atherton AM.150 is a blast on the trail, combining intuitive handling, excellent composure and outstanding manoeuvrability.

Even on man-made trails, the Atherton’s a hell lot of fun, with its rear suspension providing bags of support.

However, the soft rubber shows its bright side downhill, where it offers huge performance benefits, ensuring excellent traction. In addition, the tough casing allows you to run lower air pressures for even more grip and additional damping. The AM.150 is extremely intuitive and makes you feel at ease from the get-go. However, the Atherton really comes to life at higher speeds, allowing you to cut through nasty rock gardens like a surgeon on speed. No matter what you throw at it, the Atherton sucks it up, chews it nonchalantly and spits it out again, continuing its journey with stoic composure, placidly humming the “sit on and hold tight” mantra. Nevertheless, this fondness for speed doesn’t translate into sluggishness in slow trail sections, where the AM.150 is still easy to manoeuvre, allowing you to thread your way through tight hairpin switchbacks without breaking a sweat. At the same time, it offers plenty of support, making it easy to generate speed when pumping through berms and compressions. No matter what surprises the trail has in store for you, the Atherton instills huge amounts of confidence and proves the best bike on the trail in this test field – and with a difference!

Riding Characteristics



  1. sluggish
  2. efficient


  1. cumbersome
  2. playful


  1. nervous
  2. confident


  1. demanding
  2. balanced


  1. harsh
  2. plush

Fun Factor

  1. planted
  2. poppy

Value for money

  1. terrible
  2. very good

Intended Use










The Atherton AM.150 is understated and yet unique. The spec is top-notch and trimmed for downhill performance – as is the rest of the bike. Unfortunately, there’s neither a storage compartment nor a tool mount. The comfortable pedalling position ensures top climbing performance despite the soft rubber compound. Downhill, the bike inspires huge amounts of confidence, combining intuitive handling, excellent composure and superb manoeuvrability. The AM.150 is undoubtedly the best trail bike of 2022!


  • outstanding downhill performance
  • extremely composed yet super nimble
  • very comfortable riding position, both up- and downhill
  • pedal-neutral rear suspension
  • very well balanced


  • no tool mount or storage compartment

You can find out more about at

The test field

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best trail bike of 2022 – 14 models in review

All bikes in test: Atherton AM.150 (Click for review) | Bold Linkin 135 Ultimate (Click for review) | Canyon Spectral 125 CF 9 (Click for review) | Canyon Spectral CFR (Click for review) | FOCUS JAM 8.9 (Click for review) | Mondraker Raze RR SL (Click for review) | Propain Hugene (Click for review) | Rocky Mountain Instinct C70 (Click for review) | ROSE BONERO 3 (Click for review) | Santa Cruz Bronson CC X01 AXS (Click for review) | SCOR 4060 ST GX (Click for review) | Specialized Stumpjumper EVO S-Works (Click for review) | Specialized Stumpjumper EVO Elite Alloy (Click for review) | YT JEFFSY UNCAGED 6 (Click for review)

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Words: Simon Kohler Photos: Peter Walker, Mike Hunger

About the author

Simon Kohler

​​Simon loves speed. He has many years of racing experience as a longboard downhill skater, blasting down alpine passes on his board. In the meantime, he’s swapped four wheels for two, charging down trails and bike park lines aboard his mountain bike instead. He’s savoured some of Europe’s finest trails on various road trips through the Alps. Having lived in Austria for some time, he knows the local Austrian bike parks like the back of his hand. He’s a tech nerd through and through, using the skills and know-how from his engineering degree and his attention to detail to put the latest bikes and components through their paces for our reviews. As an early riser and self-declared muesli connoisseur, he lives his life powered by oats and the strength of his legs.