There is a stigma about mountain bikes with short suspension travel; that they are great for pedaling uphill, but as soon as things get rowdy on the downhill, they can’t keep up with longer travel bikes. Yeti’s new SB100 is here to challenge that stigma. The bike was officially released today but has been ridden and tested by Canadian Olympian and professional mountain biker, Geoff Kabush. “The SB100 is a short travel bike, but it’s made for and excels on technical singletrack,” says Kabush. Yeti’s president Chris Conroy agrees, “Whoever is testing the SB100 crushes us on the climbs, which is to be expected. But what’s unexpected is we can’t drop them on the chunky technical downhill. It’s a testament to how capable this bike is.”
True to Yeti’s bike naming convention, the SB100 features 100mm or rear suspension travel and comes kitted with a 120mm version of Fox’s new Step-Cast 34 fork. Yeti also opted for 29-inch wheels to pair with its tweaked Switch Infinity System, which gets tucked behind the seat tube. According to Yeti, this allows for all sizes of the bike to fit a large water bottle in the front triangle, and also gives the bike an uninterrupted seat post (great for installing longer-travel dropper posts).
The SB100 will fill the XC-bike-sized hole in Yeti’s lineup left by the departure of the ASR C. But it’s certainly not a direct replacement. Where the ASR C was a race-built speed machine, the SB100 leans slightly more toward the trail bike side — but still keeps climbing as a top priority.
What Others Are Saying:
• “As expected, the SB100 climbs with the quickness, efficiency and lightning-fast acceleration that has come to characterize Yeti’s SB platform, even with the shock left open. But it was while descending that I gained an appreciation for Yeti’s spec choices–a dropper post is truly a must on any mountain bike, and while I’m admittedly not a racer looking to shave every possible gram, the dropper-post grams are always worth keeping.” — Nicole Formosa, Bike Magazine
• “If the amount of suspension travel weren’t in this bike’s name, I would have guessed I was riding a replacement for Yeti’s 114mm-travel SB4.5 with a 120mm fork bolted to the front.” — Josh Patterson, Bike Radar
• “The other notable quality is that SB100’s rear end is, as claimed, surprisingly versatile. I’ll tell you right now that running 30-percent or more sag on a cross-country bike, or most any short-travel bike, often means that you end up feeling like you’re sitting in a flat, dead spot in the travel. That’s because you are; you don’t have much left because you didn’t start with much, and it can seem like you’re just bashing up against a piece of wood. But my black Yeti didn’t do that, even at the prescribed 32-percent number. The rest of the stroke was forgiving, and the bike pedals like a champ – I didn’t want to use the cheater lever once. ” — Mike Levy, PinkBike
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