Words and photos by Dave Arthur.
This green machine is the Cube Reaction GTC SL 29, a £1,799 carbon fibre hardtail built around 29in wheels with a 100mm Fox suspension forks and a full Shimano XT groupset, with a 24lb (10.88kg) complete weight.
The bike as it rolls out of the box is ready to hit the trail for some fast trail action or race, whether a short cross-country affair or something longer like one of the many marathon or 12/24-hour races dotted around the country. I’m going to be testing it at the Wiggle Mountain Mayhem 24-hour race this weekend at Gatcombe Park, but before I go getting it covered in dust (provided the weather forecast doesn’t change at the last minute) here’s a first look at the vitals.
The bike features a full carbon fibre frame, it’s the same one used on several models in the range covering loads of price points. It has a tapered head tube to boost front end stiffness, a huge down tube, press-fit bottom bracket and oversized chainstays. It’s constructed using their Twin Mold Monocoque technology, which involves using fixed internal forms at the junctions of the frame to reduce wrinkling of the internal layer of carbon, therefore reducing weight.
Geometry is racey as you’d expect. This 19in (five sizes are offered) has a 414mm reach and 615mm stack, 440mm chainstays, 1098mm wheelbase, 70.5 degree head angle and 602mm top tube.
You get a full Shimano XT groupset, including a triple 40x30x22 chainset and brakes, with 180/160mm rotors. Both gear cables are routed internally, only exiting under the bottom bracket shell. The rear brake hose is routed along the underside of the top tube and held in place with clean clips.