Saracen has unveiled a mostly mountain 2019 bike range. The lineup mostly evolves new models we’ve covered earlier this year, two new bikes stand out. Levarg is the biggest detour – a dropbar gravel bike, with a Fox fork for some real adventuring. Plus, their World Cup DH bike gets a little brother, an alloy Myst SL that cuts race ready downhill pricing in half!

2019 Levarg alloy, suspension fork adventure road gravel bike

2019 Levarg alloy, suspension fork adventure road gravel bike

This year Saracen had the Hack, an alloy road bike for mountain bikers with 32mm Exposures on 700 wheels. That wasn’t apparently enough, so they’re going deep into gravel for next season. The new Levarg doubles down with 650B wheels and suspension for more off-road road cush.

Levarg alloy adventure road gravel bike – Tech Details

2019 Levarg alloy, suspension fork adventure road gravel bike

The new gravel bike is definitely the result of mountain bikers getting ahold of a drop bar bike. It starts with a custom butted and hydroformed 6061 alloy tubeset with all the features you want in a modern 650B gravel bike. That means a 1.5″ tapered headtube, flat mount disc brake tabs, 12mm thru-axles, rack & fender mounts, 1x or compact double compatibility, and internal cable routing in the alloy front triangle.

2019 Levarg alloy, suspension fork adventure road gravel bike

Where it deviates from the norm is in its spec. Two models of the bike use a nice, long suspension-corrected carbon fork which allows Saracen to spec one model of the bike with both a 40mm travel Fox 32 SC AX suspension fork AND a SpeedUp dropper seatpost.

2019 Levarg alloy, suspension fork adventure road gravel bike

All of the Levag bikes share the same alloy frame and geometry in four standard sizes (S-XL). The bikes are designed around Road plus 47-50mm slick tires, so Saracen spec’s the smaller 42mm Resolute for the knobby, trail-oriented model.

Levarg gravel adventure bikes – Complete Spec & Pricing

2019 Levarg alloy, suspension fork adventure road gravel bike

The Levarg OR is the most striking of the new 650B gravel bike builds. For £2300, buyers get the alloy frame, Fox 32 SC AX fork with its 15×199 thru-axle, SpeedUp dropper post activated by a lever under the saddle, a SRAM Apex 1 hydro groupset, and WTB STP Light i23 rims with Resolute 650 x 42c rubber.

2019 Levarg alloy, suspension fork adventure road gravel bike

A lighter Levarg SL build pairs the alloy frame with a full carbon fork and an Apex 1 drivetrain paired to TRP Hy/Rd hydraulic/mechanical disc brakes for £1350. You also get a more budget wheelset and shift to gravel-ready WTB Byway tires.

2019 Levarg alloy, suspension fork adventure road gravel bike

The most affordable Levarg build gets the alloy frame, plus a carbon fork with an alloy steerer. For £1100 it includes a 2×9 Shimano Sora groupset including Sora mechanical brakes, and with a small 48/32 FSA chainset paired to an 11-34 cassette, also with the 47mm WTB Byways.

2019 Saracen Myst AL affordable alloy DH race bike

2019 Saracen Myst AL affordable alloy DH race bike

Then at the complete other extreme end of the spectrum is Saracen’s downhill bike – the Myst, which was one of several bikes we saw customized for DH Worlds a couple weeks back. Clearly with a World Cup (and World Championship) race-ready pedigree, now Saracen is adding a much more attainable alloy DH bike as well.

Myst AL alloy downhill bike – Tech Details

2019 Saracen Myst AL affordable alloy DH race bike

The new Myst AL 27.5 is everything of the same bike with 200mm of linkage-driven high single pivot rear wheel travel, paired to a 203mm travel fork, now in a bombproof 6013 alloy frameset. But now the Myst AL is available for just £2600 (down from £5800 for the carbon Team bike), making this a killer privateer DH racer’s option.

2019 Saracen Myst AL affordable alloy DH race bike

The complete bike gets a Shimano Zee 1×10 drivetrain, four-piston Shimano hydraulic brakes, an MRP G4 CS chain guide, and super tacky Maxxis High Roller II tires. Suspension looks like it is handled wholly by X-Fusion, with a RV1 fork and a Vector Coil RC shock out back. The new alloy DH bike comes in the three stock sizes (S, M, L)

Saracen.co.uk

5 COMMENTS

  1. nice to see reach numbers extending and head angles slackening on these bikes. Given the evolution of mountain bikes, “gravel bikes” should just be incorporating these things right away, no need for incremental evolution when we already know what works well for stable descending on the rough stuff. Looking forward to the “long, low, slack” marketing copy for gravel bikes starting sometime two years from now.

  2. It’s one of a very very few comments from me in forums and websites but I can not hold back anymore. Obviously it is not just me who find’s no real usecase for a wannabe MTB with dropbars. If I want a gravelbike I think about the sensation you have on a Roadbike: fast acceleration, dynamic feel, lightweight and sometimes the need to be even faster ans aerodynamic down in the ddrops. With a gravelbike a fireroad is fun whereas on a MTB its boring it s just the transition to the trail. Wide tires, suspension with minimal travel and so on will give you a MTB feel with dropbars. Such a mtb gravelbike is only full of unessasary compromises. There are way better alternatives out there. I think there is a good reason that MTBs don’t have dropbars anymore like some had in the early days. I could go more into detail but you get the point. If any Productmanager of such a bike is reading here could you please give me two propper reasons to justify a bike like this? Biking is not rational and not everything has to justified but it it to silly. Mountainbikes have emanzipated from roadbikes over the last decades and now we start reevolving a modern roadbike segment aka gravelbikes and turn them into MTBs again. Sorry but people who designed those MTB gravelbikes havent understood what gravelbikes are made for.

    • That’s a very polarised opinion Sg. Bike’s evolve, look at the original XC bikes and how they have morphed to what they are today. “Gravel Bikes” are such an americanism, and I can see that Saracen are taking the mickey out of it, sadly in many areas of the UK we don’t have endless gravel roads like in North America, our gravel is more like a bit of fire road/bridleway/open moor land etc so there are times you need a cross bike gravel bike and MTB all in one ride. I think the Levarg hits the nail on the head, its not mean’t to be a MTB, its evolved it geometry, much like mountain bike geometry has evolved over the years. Saracen are not the first company to introduce the longer top tube shorter stem approach, Whyte have been doing it for a couple of years now. As for 650b, its nothing new, again the North Americans have been running 650b for road/gravel for decades. Why should a brand get slagged of for having a different approach, the proof is in the pudding, ride it first before claiming that there are better alternatives, this might be the better alternative to whats already on the market.

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