This week sees the launch of Saracen Bikes’ new 2019 collection.
Loud and proud amongst the new range is a brand new alloy Saracen Myst… and it looks absolutely bloody brilliant value.
It’s a Myst… but it’s a metal one
The Saracen Myst has a fine old pedigree behind it. In the time we’ve seen it evolve from prototype to full carbon 29’er it’s won World Championships, World Cups and National series titles … with Danny Hart, Manon Carpenter, Matt Walker and many more piloting them to top results.
- XFusion RV1 fork with 203mm travel
- XFusion Vektor RC coil shock with 203mm travel
- Shimano Zee 10 speed gearing
- Formula hubs with Kore rims
- Shimano MT501 brakes
- Maxxis Highroller 2 tyres
The latest evolution of the Myst includes big wheels, carbon and team geometry… but we’re more interested in the new low-fi alloy version. The new Saracen Myst AL 27.5 comes in at just over £2,500 and is kitted out with a fine range of components and, let’s face it, the same geometry and suspension platform as the carbon version.
Where the top of the range carbon Myst Team comes decked out with best of the best bits, the Myst AL keeps the costs down whilst still being worth riding.
Gearing comes via Shimano’s tough and affordable Shimano Zee with a 10 speed cassette. Brakes are the unsexy but powerful Shimano MT501’s. They’re 4 pot with dirty great big 203mm rotors and should do a great job of slowing you down. Exactly the same as your post, expensive bike the Myst AL comes with an MRP chain guide
All of the Mysts in the range use the TRL (tuned ride link) suspension design and whilst the rides may vary a little between carbon and alloy frames and the various shocks, you’re getting the same platform on the £2.5k bike as you would on the £5.5k bike.
The Myst’s TRL design uses one big, stiff, tough bearing on the frame and then a link to drive the shock. Saracen say that ‘efficient pedalling on the up and plush, bottomless feel on the descents are the key characteristics of TRL”.
Something that really stands out for us is the geometry.
The sizes of the carbon and alloy bikes are slightly different but essentially, you’re getting the same angles on the alloy bike as Danny Hart hurled down the hill at World Champs to a 3rd place. You don’t get the adjustable chain stay of the carbon bike… but you can probably live with that, right?
The Myst Al comes in 3 sizes – small, medium and large. We’re still waiting on geometry charts and sizing but our guess is they’ll be pitching this one at young guns and privateers so there should be a good range of sizing.
And, of course, the other big stand out on the bike is the XFusion suspension. It’s been a couple of years since we’ve tested an XFusion damper so no comments on that without a ride.
The XFusion RV1 HLR fork comes with high and low speed compression, magnesium lower legs and a Neutra Valve pressure release system which is designed to “neutralize internal pressure providing the most consistent spring rate characteristics”.
The rear shock is the XFusion’s Vektor RC. That has XFusion’s ‘Check Valve System’ and ‘C Damping System which has “the same technology as the HLR system, but with a factory preset high-speed circuit and a more cost effective price tag.
You can learn more about Saracen Bikes over on their website at Saracen.co.uk