Today Santa Cruz launches their line-up of new products. Using new carbon materials they are releasing a series of reasonably-priced frames and lightweight carbon handlebars. Prices are still unknown and will be announced soon. “We’re stoked to have nailed an incredibly low carbon price point for this year, without sacrificing anything other than a bit of weight. Given that most reviews call out our XX1 Enve builds as being stratospheric stuff, we think this brings things back down to earth… in a good way.”

Clockwise: 5010 CS, Bronson CR, Tallboy CS & 5010 CR.
Clockwise: 5010 CS, Bronson CR, Tallboy CS & 5010 CR.

Carbon frames

For 2015, we’ve managed to dramatically reduce the price on carbon Bronson, 5010 and Tallboy models, and increased our build options to create the kind of industry-crushing performance that now comes as standard from Santa Cruz.

“We’re well aware that bikes have been going up in price the last few years” says Joe Graney, who headed-up the project at Santa Cruz. “So we made it a priority to get the radness of our carbon technology to “trickle down” within reach of more riders.”!
“Working with our exclusive manufacturing partner, we used the same proprietary processes to create lower cost carbon frames that retained the same legendary strength and stiffness Santa Cruz are known for. We achieved this by using a different grade of carbon material that results in a minimal weight gain of approximately 250-280 grams (0.6 lbs).”
These new carbon frames will only be available as part of the new R and S builds.

The 2015 Tallboy Carbon R build with Recon, Float & XT mech.
The 2015 Tallboy Carbon R build with Recon, Float & XT mech.

The S build represents a whole new tier of performance for Santa Cruz in 2015 and includes components such as the Rockshox Pike RC Solo Air and Reverb Stealth as standard on Bronson or 5010 builds.

We’ve again refrained from conjuring up carbon acronyms to bash you over the head with. The new lower cost frames are simply referred to as “Carbon”, while our existing carbon frames are known as “Carbon C”. Carbon C frames now feature on XT/X01 level builds and up, and remain available as frame only.

Rob Roskopp testing the Carbon 800 Bar on his Nomad (© Gary Perkin).
Rob Roskopp testing the Carbon 800 Bar on his Nomad (© Gary Perkin).

Carbon Handlebars

The all new Santa Cruz carbon handlebars are designed and made exclusively by Santa Cruz, using everything we’ve learned from creating World Championship winning carbon bicycles.


“It’s been impossible to keep our engineers away from bars” admits Rob Roskopp, owner of Santa Cruz Bicycles. “Having mastered complex projects such as the carbon V10 swingarm, it was inevitable we started looking at where carbon know-how could improve other areas of our products. The key thing for me was that if it was going to carry the Santa Cruz name then everything had to be designed, tested and made by us to the same high standards as our bicycles.”
And so the first Santa Cruz carbon handlebar was born.

Initially conceived for DH, we soon realized the 800mm-wide 35mm-clamp
design delivered DH strength at All Mountain weight. So we didn’t stop there,
and continued to develop a suite of variants.

Width Rise Sweep Clamp Weight
Carbon 800 800mm 20mm 35mm 200g
Carbon 760 760mm 20mm 35mm 185g
Carbon 760 flat 760mm 7mm 31,8mm 182g
Carbon 720 flat 720mm 7mm 31,8mm 176g

Each bar has a dialed amount of stiffness, keeping vibration in check and minimizing arm fatigue. Discrete markers take the pain out of set-up alignments and stealth branding keeps things class. Exclusively specced on our new 2015 models (from XT/X01 builds upwards) the new carbon bars are bona fide Santa Cruz products that take the quality of our bicycles up yet another notch, and will soon be available after market so you can do the same.


The brand new Palmdale Grip is a classic example of a discussion at Santa Cruz getting out of hand.
“What started as a simple question between a few of us about “what makes a good grip?”, quickly blew up into a mass debate” explains Josh Kissner, Product Manager at Santa Cruz Bicycles. “Before we knew it, everyone from Sven Martin (World Cup photographer and ham-fisted product wrecker) to Kiran MacKinnon (our tech guy and ProGRT racer) were wading in with their 2 cents.”

Santa Cruz Palmdale Grip

So we created a whole bunch of different designs for people to ride and report back on, and finally drew up the Grip Manifesto:

1. Single lock-ring design with the staying power of dual lock-ring.

A taper-lock core uses an internal sleeve that narrows towards the last 38mm (1.5”) of the grip, effectively clamping onto the end of the bar to eliminate twisting.

2. Closed end with flared edge for comfort, feel and security.

8mm (0.3”) of rubber with a subtle mushroom profile on the tip resists scuffing, provides comfort and adds an intuitive feel for the bar end. (We also found it adds a healthy dose of forgiveness when clipping trees on tight trails!)

3. Long grip length and waffle knurl for maximum control.

A generous 125mm (4.9”) grip length (excluding lock-ring) allows plenty of room to reposition hands on differing terrain and long rides. The moto-knurl pattern gives just the right balance of feel and grip in all conditions.

Santa Cruz Product Manager Josh Kissner testing the Palmdale Grip during the Andes-Pacifico race in Chile, 2014. (© Gary Perkin).
Santa Cruz Product Manager Josh Kissner testing the Palmdale Grip during the Andes-Pacifico race in Chile, 2014. (© Gary Perkin).

Designed and tested by Santa Cruz, the Palmdale Grips are now officially the new home for your hands on all our 2015 bikes. They’ll also be available after- market in a slew of coordinated colors soon too.

Words & Pictures: Santa Cruz PR

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