At YT, the UNCAGED decal is exclusive to special models with a high-end spec. The same goes for the JEFFSY UNCAGED 6, which comes equipped with RockShox’s electronic Flight Attendant suspension system and other bling components. But how does YT’s high-tech machine fare 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
With the JEFFSY UNCAGED 6, YT are entering the race with the most expensive bike in their entire portfolio. Limited to 200 units worldwide, it costs € 8,999 and tilts the scales at 14 kg. The UNCAGED 6 flagship model comes equipped with RockShox Flight Attendant, which automatically adjusts the compression damping of the 150 mm fork and shock according to the riding situation.
The spec of the YT JEFFSY UNCAGED 6
The elegant carbon frame and swingarm are covered in protective tape, while a TPU plate shields the down tube from stray rocks and impacts. Moreover, a generously sized chain and seat stay protector prevents chain slap and paint chips. The horizontally-mounted shock doesn’t leave much room for a conventional cage, but YT’s in-house Thirstmaster 4000, which was developed specifically for the Jeffsy, fits snugly into the small space under the shock. This is the smaller Thirstmaster 600 ml model, which is attached to the frame via FIDLOCK’s magnetic holder. If you prefer a classic water bottle, the Jeffsy comes standard with an adapter for conventional bottle cages. The rear brake line is secured to the seat stay with zip ties – other manufacturers offer more elegant solutions here.
YT JEFFSY UNCAGED 6
Fork RockShox Lyrik Ultimate Flight Attendant 150 mm
Rear Shock RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate 150 mm
Seatpost RockShox Reverb AXS 170 mm
Brakes SRAM G2 Ultimate 200/200 mm
Drivetrain SRAM XX1 Eagle AXS 1x12
Stem Renthal Apex 50 mm
Handlebar Renthal FatBar Carbon 780 mm
Wheelset Crankbrothers Synthesis Enduro Carbon 29"
Tires MAXXIS Minion DHF, 3C, MaxxGrip, EXO/MAXXIS Minion DHR II, 3C, MaxxTerra, EXO 2.5/2.4
Size S M L XL XXL
Weight 14 kg
Tuning Tip: tires with robust casing, at least rear
RockShox’s electronic Flight Attendant suspension system recognises the riding situation and automatically adjusts the compression damping of the fork and shock, switching between Open, Pedal and Lock modes in the bat of an eyelid, depending on what you need at that moment. The suspension consists of a Lyrik Ultimate fork and Super Deluxe Ultimate rear shock. YT also rely on electronics for other components, combining a RockShox Reverb AXS dropper post and SRAM XX1 AXS drivetrain, which both ensure a tidy cockpit. However, at 170 mm, the dropper has too little travel, limiting the freedom of movement on the bike. Moreover, you’ll have to run an accurate charging schedule because the electronic components employ a total of 4 batteries. That being said, all electronic RockShock/SRAM components rely on the same battery, allowing you to swap them around in case you get stuck on the trail. SRAM also supply the G2 Ultimate brakes which, despite running on big 200 mm rotors front and rear, generate too little braking power for a trail bike. We recommend upgrading to more powerful stoppers, like SRAM’s CODE RSCs or Shimano’s XT 4-piston stoppers.
The cockpit consists of a Renthal Apex stem and 780 mm FatBar carbon handlebars. The Crankbrothers Synthesis Enduro Carbon wheelset was designed with compliance in mind and is meant to offer more comfort on the trail and feel like a lightweight alloy wheelset – albeit without the vague handling characteristics. For the tires, the Germans rely on MAXXIS, combining a Minion DHF with soft MaxxGrip rubber compound at the front and Minion DHR II in the harder MaxxTerra compound at the rear. This setup ensures increased cornering traction but doesn’t affect rolling resistance too heavily, as most of the weight is on the rear tire. Although the advantages of this combination clearly outweigh its disadvantages, YT is one of the few manufacturers to rely on it. Unfortunately, both tires come in the puncture-prone EXO casing. We recommend running a tire with more robust casing, like MAXXIS DoubleDown, at least at the rear. This will protect the carbon rims against nasty impacts while allowing you to run lower tire pressures for more traction.
The stock SRAM G2 brakes get easily overwhelmed on a bike like the JEFFSY, robbing you of confidence on descents.
The geometry of the YT JEFFSY UNCAGED 6
The JEFFSY UNCAGED 6 is available in 5 sizes, S to XXL. While the YT is the only bike with an XL frame in this test, the 490 mm reach is relatively short compared to most of its opponents, blending in perfectly with the rest of the test field at. At 460 mm, the long seat tube restricts the freedom of movement on the bike. A flip chip in the shock mount allows you to alter the geometry of the Jeffsy. In the high setting, the seat and head angle are 0.5° steeper while the bottom bracket is 8 mm higher. Chainstay length is 435 mm in sizes S to L and grows by 5 mm in XL and XXL, providing consistent handling across all sizes.
|Seat tube||400 mm||415 mm||435 mm||460 mm||485 mm|
|Top tube||572 mm||593 mm||615 mm||638 mm||660 mm|
|Head tube||100 mm||105 mm||110 mm||125 mm||125 mm|
|Chainstays||435 mm||435 mm||435 mm||440 mm||440 mm|
|BB Drop||32 mm||32 mm||32 mm||32 mm||32 mm|
|Wheelbase||1174 mm||1196 mm||1218 mm||1247 mm||1269 mm|
|Reach||430 mm||450 mm||470 mm||490 mm||510 mm|
|Stack||618 mm||622 mm||627 mm||636 mm||640 mm|
The YT JEFFSY UNCAGED 6 on the trail
When making your way to the trail centre on level ground, the YT JEFFSY puts you in a slightly stretched riding position with a fair amount of pressure on the hands. As soon as you start climbing towards the trailhead, the front lifts off the ground easily, causing the front wheel to lose traction. Thanks to the electronic RockShox Flight Attendant system, the suspension is firm and always sits high in its travel. As a result, the rear suspension is pedal-neutral, efficiently transferring the power from your legs to the rear wheel. That being said, there are other bikes in this test that are just as pedal-neutral even without an electronic suspension system and that are a lot lighter too. All in all, Flight Attendant doesn’t bring many advantages to the trail with the YT.
The YT JEFFSY UNCAGED 6 offers precise handling and yet is compliant enough to forgive small riding mistakes.
On steep descents, the JEFFSY UNCAGED 6 impresses with direct and precise handling and yet offers enough compliance to bail you out if you get yourself into a pickle with messy lines and dodgy weight shifts. That being said, the JEFFSY still requires a sporty riding style because the firm rear suspension passes on plenty of feedback to the rider, requiring more physical effort in rock gardens and root carpets to compensate for the impulsive character of the bike. The high saddle is a real bummer because the long seat tube together with the relatively short dropper post restricts freedom of movement on the bike, robbing you of confidence on steep and technical trail sections.
The YT JEFFSY UNCAGED 6 comes equipped with high-end components including an electronic suspension system. Unfortunately, other components like the brakes and tires don’t do justice to the character and intended use of the bike while the high seat tube restricts freedom of movement downhill. Flight Attendant definitely brings some advantages uphill but still doesn’t make the YT the best climber in this test. Downhill, the YT is stiff and direct, requiring a sporty and active riding style.
- clean look
- solid climber
- direct and precise handling
- brakes lack power
- limited freedom of movement (due to long seat tube and short dropper post)
You can find out more about at yt-industries.com
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)
This scale indicates how efficiently the bike climbs. It refers to both simple and technical climbs. Along with the suspension, the riding position and the weight of the bike all play a crucial role.↩
How does the bike ride and descend? How spritely is the bike, how agile is it through corners, how much fun is it in tight sections and how quickly can it change direction?↩
Is the bike stable at high speeds? Is it easy to stay in control in demanding terrain? How composed is it on rough trails? Stability is a combination of balanced geometry, good suspension and the right spec.↩
This is all about how balanced the bike is and particularly about how well it corners. Balanced bikes require little physical effort from the rider and are very predictable. If a bike is unbalanced, the rider has to work hard to weight the front wheel to generate enough grip. However, experienced riders can have a lot of fun even with unbalanced bikes.↩
How sensitive is the suspension over small bumps? Can it absorb hard impacts and does it soak up repeated hits? Plush suspension not only provides comfort and makes a bike more capable, but it also generates traction. The rating includes the fork and the rear suspension.↩
This aspect mainly comes down to the suspension. How much pop does it have, does it suck up the rider’s input or is it supportive, and how agile and direct is the bike?↩
We don’t calculate value for money in an excel spreadsheet or based on how high-end a bike is specced. We are more concerned with how a bike performs on the trail and how the bike benefits the rider. What good are the best components if the bike doesn’t perform well on the trail? Expensive bikes with a lower-end spec can offer very good value for money – provided they excel where it matters. Just as supposedly cheap bikes with good components can get a bad rating if they don’t deliver on the trail.↩
No, it’s not about racing, it’s about efficiency. Fast, fleet-footed and efficient – those who want to speed along flowy singletrack and gravel roads need a defined and spritely bike that accelerates with ease and efficiency. Nevertheless, reliable components are important too. We interpret XC more like the Americans do: big back-country rides instead of a marathon or XC World Cup with the ultimate in lightweight construction! Uphill-downhill ratio: 80:30 (not everything has to be 100%!)↩
...also known as mountain biking. Classic singletrack with roots, rocks and ledges – sometimes flowy, sometimes rough. For this, you need a bike with good all-round qualities, whether climbing or descending. Uphill-downhill ratio: 50:50↩
Even more extreme and challenging compared to Trail riding, riddled with every kind of obstacle: jumps, gaps, nasty rock gardens, ruts and roots. For this, you need (race)proven equipment that forgives mistakes and wouldn’t look out of place on a stage of the Enduro World Series. Climbing is just a means to an end. Uphill-downhill ratio: 30:70↩
Strictly speaking, a 200 mm travel downhill bike is the best choice for merciless tracks with big jumps, drops and the roughest terrain. Those would be the black or double-black-diamond tracks in a bike park. But as some of the EWS pros (including Sam Hill) have proven, it’s the riding skills and not the bike that define what you can ride with it. Climbing? On foot or with a shuttle, please! Uphill-downhill ratio: 10:90↩
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Words: Simon Kohler Photos: Peter Walker, Mike Hunger