While SRAM hasn’t yet officially added SX to their Eagle line-up, we’ve started seeing a new budget drivetrain popping up in online shops promising even lower prices than NX Eagle. It’s undeniable that SRAM reshaped modern mountain bike drivetrains with their wide-ranging 1×12 speed Eagle groupsets, and SX Eagle looks poised to bring that same performance to even more affordable mountain bikes. As their direct competitor still only offers 1×12 at the most premium, SX Eagle looks set to round out a fifth-tier offering for SRAM 1×12.

SRAM SX Eagle budget 1×12 mountain bike drivetrain

SRAM SX Eagle budget 1x12 mountain bike drivetrain 12-speed MTB groupset
c. Bike-Discount.de

What we know so far about the upcoming SRAM SX Eagle group is limited to that published by online retailers. But from that we can glean plenty of info. The group looks to be a companion to NX Eagle, with a lower cost crankset, shifter & rear derailleur, likely to bring the total group cost down especially for OEM bikes trying to hit a more affordable pricepoint. SX Eagle doesn’t get its own chain or cassette, instead  taking those direct from the already affordable NX Eagle.

The alloy SX crankset gets a slightly simplified forging with the same style of Boost-spaced, direct-mount, stamped steel chainring as found on NX, plus the new DUB bottom bracket/axle standard. We’ve seen a range of crank lengths, but only 32T chainrings being offered.

SRAM SX Eagle budget 1x12 mountain bike drivetrain 12-speed MTB groupsetThe SX Eagle rear derailleur looks much like other SRAM  X-Horozon 1x derailleurs, but like the cheaper drop bar versions, it uses a more conventional cable entry point vs. the NX’s pulley. The steel cage derailleur still gets a clutch, narrow-wide lower X-Sync pulley, and a cage lock to work with up to 50T cassettes.

The plastic shifter has a simplified clamshell construction, with a built-in band clamp meaning no Matchmaker compatibility. But does share the same X-Actuation cable pull making it work with all Eagle derailleurs, and can handle 5 upshifts at a time.

SRAM SX Eagle budget 1x12 mountain bike drivetrain 12-speed MTB groupset

The cassette for the group is the PG-1230 12-speed 11-50T shared directly with NX Eagle meaning it will work on standard HG (Shimano-style) freewheel bodies, while giving much of the range of the more premium Eagle groupsets. The chain is also a NX Eagle part, with Eagle’s distinct Powerlock quick link.

The online retailers are all quoting approximately six weeks til availability, so we expect it to pop up in late June/early July 2019. Retail pricing for SRAM SX Eagle is estimated at 370€ for the complete setup, making it about 50€ less than a pure NX Eagle combo. While that is surely targeting entry-level mountain bikes, we’d guess it will make the decision to upgrade to 1×12 even easier for plenty of mountain bikers who have been on the fence.



  1. Sad to see Shimano getting trounced like this. Their conservatism means they’re less likely to have SNAFUs like SRAM has had at times, but they also don’t react to trends quickly enough for their own good…

    • Yeah but I seem to remember Shimano doing the same thing to Suntour. So I think they know the game. But I’ve been having some shop conversations with other people about this to they definitely seem to not be making the curve right now. And I think it would benefit them to start being able to cross over there Road and Mountain components which is really hard to do right now

      • Yes, they did (the same thing to Suntour/Mavic/Sachs and still going with Campagnolo). I have not had a Shimano bike in almost two decades…no reason to ever go on that bandwagon.

        What I do not get…Shimano is a 600lbs gorilla (with most of their money NOT from cycling)…SRAM is Cycling centric to the core. But, is SRAM with all of their (new found) ‘partnerships’ (Zipp and so many others)…really that much more agile than Shimano?

        I get the theory that they let their purchases self manage to a point. But, even then their moves into the golden market place (OEM on WalMart bikes) they are outsmarting the fox that is Shimano. Surely we are collectively missing something huge here….there has got to be a reason.

        • Most of their money is from cycling. Last time I checked, fishing was less than 40% of their revenue, and shrinking.

  2. The first thing that came into my head was the original Robocop movie and all the spoof adds in the movie selling the 6000 SUX car. I’m the first to admit my very large bias against SRAM (too many bad experiences over the years) but to go 1×12 entry level like this is pretty impressive. You’ll still have to pry my Shimano mountain groups from my cold dead hands though.

  3. With SRAM cheaper usually means lower performance, generally with Shimano it just means heavier. I’d rather have heavy and functional than cheap but picky. NX really sticks out with its poor durability. A cheaper group than that? Maybe with fewer sprockets it would make sense. The crappy cables and housing that come stock at this price point make it even worse. I think SRAM needs to slow it down a bit. First the high end with AXS now low end with this? They’ll be stretched quite thin to pull everything off. Let’s hope we don’t get another season of the recalls.

  4. Well, the NX components, in my experience, are already a grand waste of money, since they do not stand the test of time & grime. NX level derailleurs do not evenlike dust.Their joints tend to clog up so badly that the spring cannot overcome the friction any more, turining your 1×11 or 1×12 into a 1×3.
    Anything below X0 is usually just a waste of time, if you want to do more than 500km / year.
    Shimanos entry levelcomponentstend to work much better in adverse conditions in my opinion.

  5. I remember when nothing left on my pocket after build my quiver bike.
    the most thing I hate about bicycle company is the people behind it always thinking ‘expensive first, affordable later’.

  6. While Shimano understands the variety of customer needs, including the need of some riders to stay on their optimal efficiency window, SRAM did a really brilliant marketing job, by convincing people that their great cost reduction results in an advantage, which is obviously not true for those with a minimum knowledge in physics.

    I myself saw single front chainwheelers cheering up at me on a steep climb during a XC challenge as if I was any kind of “monster of the pedal”, cause I managed to keep pedalling uphill while they were all pushing their bikes.

    Actually I have serious physical limitations and could never race those guys. But I recognize my poor fitness condition and use the appropriate gear rather than just following Avancini and other top riders’ “choice”.

  7. I have been riding the SX Eagle for two months now. It is not well made and has lots of problems. Shifter has frequent trouble with internal spring causing shift cable to bend and shift improperly (I have replaced the cable twice already). Derailleur is very temperamental … shifts poorly, ghost shifts, shifts off cassette into spokes, does not align well will chainring (almost seems to bend out of place on its own due to normal climbing stresses and tension … Likely due to it being made from such low quality material. Chain stretches a ton and will need to be replaced quickly.

    Save the headaches and hassles and downtime. No matter what your riding skill level is, buy better equipment, SRAM dropped the ball on their SX Eagle.

    • It sounds like you have a bad mechanic, not bad components. Every problem listed is due to poor set-up, not problematic parts. I have used an SX, NX groupset for quite sometime with little to no issues. Ghost-shifting, shifting off the chainring, etc. are all easily taken care of by proper set-up and tuning. Blaming the product instead of shoddy “wrenching” is laughable. It sounds as if you may work for Shimano.

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