Inside Line: New Raleigh mountain bikes

©Earl Harper

Raleigh isn’t a name you normally associate with mountain bikes. Though we have ridden and reviewed a few models, the brand is introducing a series of new full-suspension bikes for 2015, from entry-level to high-end. It is also expanding the Tamland line of gravel/adventure bikes with an aluminum sister model, the Willard.

The Skarn, above, features an aluminum frame with carbon fiber swing link and seat stays, 100mm of travel front and rear, and a 2×10 Shimano drivetrain.

The Skarn Expert is top of the line, at $4,300 MSRP. Highlights include American Classic tubeless wheels, Fox F29 with FIT damper, Shimano XT brakes and drivetrain.

©Earl Harper

The $3,500 Skarn Comp has a Fox F29 for with EVO damper, SLX drivetrain and brakes and a Novatech wheelset.

©Earl Harper

Last but not least is the $2,700 MSRP Skarn Sport. Rock Shox Recon fork, Shimano Deore drivetrain and Tektro Gemini hydro brakes.

The Kodiak is a basic single pivot suspension design, with 120mm of travel, a tapered headtube and thru-axles front and rear.

©Earl Harper

The Kodiak 2 sports an impressive parts spec for the low, low, low MSRP of $1,600. Rock Shox XC32 Solo Air fork, Monarch R rear shock, 2×10 SRAM X7/X5 drivetrain,  Tekro Auriga hydro disc brakes with 180/160mm rotors, and Kenda Honey Badger tires.

©Earl Harper

The Kodiak 1 is even less expensive, at $1,100 MSRP. That includes a Suntour fork and rear shock, a 3×8 drivetrain, and Tektro Auriga hydraulic disc brakes.

Raleigh has been successful in the all-road/gravel bike market with the Tamland 1 and 2, so successful we haven’t managed to shake one loose to review! Now there are two aluminum siblings to the Tamland, Willard 1 and Willard 2.

©Earl Harper

©Earl Harper

The aluminum alloy frames and carbon forks make these bikes both lighter and cheaper than the steel Tamlands, but do they offer the same ride quality? It sounds like a side-by-side comparison review in in order.

The Willard 1 ($1,300 MSRP) has Shimano Sora 2×9 drivetrain, Clement X-Plor 700×40 tires, and TRP Spyre mechanical disc brakes. The Willard 2 ($1,750 MSRP) shares the same frame and fork, but bumps up to a Shimano 105 2×11 drivetrain.

These are just some highlights, expect Raleigh’s website to be updated soon, with the full 2015 line including kid’s bikes, women’s bikes, carbon road racing bikes, cyclocross bikes, hardtail mountain bikes, etc…

 

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