Dutch premium touring bike maker Santos has put together a new side of their direct to consumer website sharing stories and highlighting the ways to build your next lightweight, all surface touring bike. And of course it leads you down a path to their premium aluminum Gates belt drive, Rohloff-equipped Cross Lite. Working with Belgian adventure rider Gunther Desmedt, Santos can help you get on your way to a new mini-bikepacking adventure.
Santos Cross Lite alloy belt-drive bikepacking bike
While the bulk of Gunther’s tours are of the ultra-endurance variety, lighter weight bikepacking setups allow more of us normal humans to get out on the bike and away from civilization a bit closer to home. Gunther’s suggestions ring true, though… “Take some good clothes, make a small plan, don’t be too ambitious, sleeping bag, sleeping pad and just go.”
His bike of choice is the Santos Cross Lite, a durable alloy 29er frame that mixes gravel & light trail touring capability, with a no-nonsense, no-maintenance approach.
The heart of that is a stiff aluminum frame with a split chainstay and eccentric bottom bracket to be set up with a Rohloff internally geared rear hub and a Gates carbon belt drive.
Santos Cross Lite alloy bikepacking bike – Tech Details
The Santos Cross Lite frame features mounts for racks as well as regular bottle cages & modular external cable routing, or it can be setup with any manner of light bikepacking bag setups.
A steel fork with internal dynamo routing and front rack mounts is standard, but many riders opt for either a full carbon rigid fork or a short travel XC suspension for more aggressive off-road touring.
The Cross Lite can be built up with anywhere from 35-60mm tires, again depending on how far off-road you plan to adventure.
Santos Customization process & pricing
The standout feature of all of Santos’ bike is probably their customization. While geometry is stock, each bike is painted to order and then built up however you see fit.
That means you get the bike exactly tailored for your style of adventure riding in one of 50 standard colors (for no extra charge), and the chance to add things like dynamo hubs, racks, fenders. You can even pick out a Rohloff or Pinion powered drivetrain depending on bike model.
All of that made-to-order in Europe customization doesn’t come cheap, though. A complete Rohloff/Gates Cross Lite with SRAM Force shifting and a carbon fork is going to set you back around 5500€ before you strap bikepacking bags onto it.
Who said #outsideisfree!