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Gravel, on your terms.
Gravel calls and beckoning that call are reformed road riders and mountain bikers looking for an adventure right from the front door. Riding eventually leads to racing whether that's against yourself, a group of buddies, or actually signing up for an event, and with that, the need for a high performance, carbon fiber race machines that can survive the abuse of a long hard gravel event and be lightweight and efficient. If you are looking for that one bike to do so many things well or are planning on tackling some sanctioned and unsanctioned races, Niner's 2018 RLT 9 RDO 4-Star Ultegra Complete Bike provides lightweight carbon construction, dialed all-road geometry, and durability that'll have you pushing the pace on that first gravel climb, either solo or in a group of 150.
The RLT, is a touch slacker, longer, and lower than the cyclocross-specific frameset from the same brand, the BSB 9. It even gets a few geo tweaks compared to the aluminum and steel RLT as well giving it a more responsive ride. Shorter chainstays trim up the rear triangle and work in unison with the shortened wheelbase for slightly quicker handling that is still plenty stable. Over rough, washboard roads the frame forges ahead and provides a great deal of comfort while still retaining the agility leap forward when climbing out of the saddle and handle with precision on high-speed descents. To boost its versatility and lend a hand when called upon for commuting and bikepacking duties, the dropouts and fork legs have integrated rack and fender mounts offering an array of setup options. Niner wisely builds the RLT RDO with a replaceable hanger so even if you take a low-side drive-side spill or your trusty steed falls over at a rest stop, you can replace the bent or broken hanger and ride on.
As with the rest of Niner's carbon frames, this RLT 9 uses its Race Day Optimized (RDO) Carbon Compaction System to mold this RLT's frame. This allows Niner the ability to fine tune the carbon layup and eliminates any material that doesn't contribute to the frame's structural soundness or ride quality. Helping enhance the ride further, the RLT uses a 27.2mm seatpost, which adds compliance to help absorb bumps along the ride so you won't face additional fatigue from a stiff ride.
Shimano's excellent Ultegra R8020 gets called up for shifting and braking duties. The 50-34t chainrings and 11-34 provide reliable shifting and plenty of range of all-day epics while the hydraulic brakes offer tons of modulation and power down the longest, steepest descents. Rolling on an excellent set of Stan Grail tubeless wheels, this build provides all the performance you need and won't leave you seeking out anything more.
- Niner's gravel rig with RDO carbon
- Allroad geometry blends responsiveness and stability
- RDO carbon construction balances stiffness and weight
- Thru-axles increase stiffness for a snappy ride
- Rack mounts on stays and fork for bikepacking adventures
- Stan's rims and Schwalbe tires offer tubeless perfection
- Shimano's Ultegra drivetrain delivers confident gear shifts
- Item #NNR008B