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Nothings gonna stop you now.
Santa Cruz's professional enduro riders asked for it, and the engineers and designers at Santa Cruz provided it. Big wheels simply have an innate ability to carry momentum and speed over rougher trails in a way that's simply not possible on 27.5-inch wheels. The wider open and blown-out it is, the more the 29er pulls away. The riders enjoyed the ride of the standard Hightower but needed something just a little extra to be competitive at the Enduro World Series and after extensive testing, Santa Cruz decided it could reconfigure the original Hightower into a long-travel beast, the LT, to decimate the most difficult enduro courses in the world. This aggressive trail and enduro weapon of mass destruction that we have here is the Hightower LT Carbon S Reserve Complete Mountain Bike providing you with everything you need to tackle bigger lines and hit faster speeds. The C-grade carbon frame and S build saves a ton of money and reinvest it into the wheels where you're most likely to feel the improvements.
Instead of undergoing a drastic redesign, the Hightower LT retains many of the riding characteristics inherent to the original Hightower, namely its ability to roll over anything standing in its path paired with a low-slung geometry that absolutely rails corners and provides instinctive handling when pushed to the limit. Whereas the original had 135-millimeters of travel at the rear and 140-millimeters up front in its 29er form, the Hightower LT has 150-millimeters of travel at the front and rear. In conjunction with a slacker head angle of 66.4 degrees and a slightly longer wheelbase, you'll find the Hightower LT brings an unflappable level of confidence to steep descents peppered with minefield-like boulders and massive roots interlaced across the trail.
Since it's purely intended as a 29-inch application, the designers at Santa Cruz eliminated the flip-chip, making it more of a fine-tuned machine for enduro racing without the need for switching it to 27.5+ for trail use. The Hightower LT's links and swingarm are all brand new to accommodate the extra travel, but the front triangle remains the same to retain much of the original Hightower's geometry. As expected, the Hightower LT employs Santa Cruz's much-lauded VPP suspension, which offers a firm pedaling platform without wallowing around like many long-travel sleds on the market. On the descent, the 150-millimeters of VPP suspension turns the Hightower into an absolute beast, gobbling up chunky rock sections and absorbing big hits without flinching.
Its build kit complements the Hightower LT's aggressive design, with Santa Cruz providing the S package with 780-millimeter wide Race Face Aeffect R riser bars and upgraded SRAM Code R stoppers offering heaps of power and modulation. Tires are the work anywhere Maxxis Minion DHRs in 2.4-inch width, so you'll have tons of traction from baked clay hard pack trails to moist loam. Up front, you'll find a Fox 36 Performance fork giving the Hightower LT plush travel and adding stiffness to the LT's longer legs. The drivetrain is comprised of SRAM's workhorse GX Eagle 1x12 group renowned for its larger range of usable gears, which is helpful up sharp steep climbs and relentless fire roads alike as well as enough gear to keep you from spinning out on timed stages. Of course, the real star of this build is its Reserve Carbon wheels with a 30mm internal width plumping up the rubber and adding additional stiffness for sure tracking under hard cornering. Additionally, it drops ever important rotational weight and unlike a lot of other carbon hoops, isn't so stiff radially that it rides excessively harsh. Santa Cruz is so certain about its durability that it backs the rims with a lifetime warranty, just like the frame.
- Santa Cruz's long-travel 29er for the demands of enduro racing
- 150-millimeters of VPP travel smooths out rough trails
- Slacker 66.4-degree head tube for high-speed confidence
- New VPP linkage and swingarm eliminates the previous flip-chip
- Carbon C frame offers high levels of stiffness and strength
- FOX 36 Performance fork for stiff tracking over rough terrain
- GX Eagle 12-speed drivetrain provides largest 1x gear range
- Carbon Reserve wheels bump up responsiveness while dropping weight
- Item #SNZ00I3