March 01 2021
Pinkbike tester Seb Stott has been riding our new Ariel 80 for the past couple of months and has praised it as a great value and highly versatile rig that can go beyond the bike park.
Yes, you read that right – Seb actually pedalled this 180mm travel monster to the top of the hill and blasted back down again.
But what was the Ariel 80 like on the way back down? Apparently pretty good.
“Anyone who says travel doesn't matter should try a bike like this. That 180mm of coil-sprung suspension sticks the tire to the ground and takes the kick out of all the imperfections that bit more than a 160mm bike, allowing you to look further down the trail and leave the brakes alone more of the time.
“I don't like to describe a bike as "fun" because that word means different things to everyone, but the extra traction and confidence this suppleness offers is very enjoyable in my book. And while bigger wheels do help with smoothing-out and carrying speed over rough terrain, the suppleness of the Ariel's suspension more than makes up for its smaller wheels when compared to most 160mm-travel 29ers.
“If you haven't had the pleasure of riding a downhill bike made in the last few years, there's a good chance this will descend better than whatever dual-crown bike you rode last.”
While that write-up may be unsurprising for a bike that here at Saracen we describe as ‘built to party’ the next bit of Seb’s test was unexpected… apparently you can take this thing up hill! All of that – and the great-value £2399.99 price – led to one conclusion.
“If you want one relatively affordable bike to shred the bike park on Saturday, enter the occasional downhill race on Sunday and earn your turns mid-week, it's a very compelling option indeed.”
Want to read the full review – or just check out the comments? Head over to Pinkbike now!
Be sure to check out the full Ariel 80 range here.