2016 Saracen Bikes – Myst, Kili Flyer, Ariel and Mantra

// Words by Jim Smith

I travelled down to Saracen HQ in Milton Keynes for a nosey at the 2016 range, in particular the trail, enduro and gravity end of the market. We’re big fans of Saracen here at Wideopen – Pete has had an Ariel on long term test and he loves it (just check his twitter – @pete_scullion).

2016 Saracen Mantra Carbon frameset – £799.99

The first thing to catch my eye was this neon yellow Mantra Carbon. This is the frameset colour, the full bike comes in a range of more sensible specs and colours. The guys at Saracen set out to build their dream spec with this staff bike and I reckon they’re not far off.

P1020700With an 11 speed drivetrain, Fox 34’s and rolling on 27.5″ wheels, the Mantra is a great trail hardtail – and there’s one for every budget. From the £499.99 alloy Mantra full bike to this £799.99 carbon frame.

2016 Saracen Kili Flyer Elite – £3,699.99

The Kili Flyer is what Saracen think is the ultimate UK trail bike. With 130mm travel to get you out of trouble without affecting pedalling performance too much and a lightweight carbon frame I have to admit they might be right. Whilst probably not totally at home on the gnarlier trails, 130mm travel is more than enough for the average rider.

P1020684For 2016 they’ve focussed on just one full bike weighing in at 28lbs and a frameset (£1999.99) should you wish to build your own. The obvious stand out feature on the Elite are those tyres. Skinwall? In 2016?! Marmite time perhaps.

2016 Saracen Ariel Elite – £3,499.99

Ah lady Ariel. Again we see Saracen simplifying the range, just two models to choose from. A cheaper Marzocchi equipped Ariel Pro bike for £2799.99 or the Elite for £3,499.99 and a frameset for £1599.99.

P1020691Changes for 2016 are mostly around the fork – it’s now 160mm instead of 150mm, a change that most manufacturers seem to making to their enduro bikes. The new Shimano XT features here with the 1×11, otherwise it’s much the same as before – truly a race ready enduro bike.

2016 Saracen Myst Pro

This is the very frame currently piloted by the likes of Manon Carpenter and Matt Simmonds. For £2999.99 you can get a full Shimano Zee/Boxxer/Maxxis/Kore equipped bike which frankly seems like a pretty good deal.

P1020680No major changes again here apart from the Zee brake upgrade – Saracen decided to stick with what worked.

Overall a pretty solid lineup. The bikes should be getting out to shops in August, its refreshing to see all the bikes running 1x for 2016 – because after all who needs a front mech these days? For more information head over to www.saracen.co.uk