2012 GT Xizang 9'r titanium 29er - First Look

Plus entry-level Distortion and updates elsewhere

We were given a preview of GT's 2012 mountain bike line-up this week at the Ride the Revolution trade show organised by UK distributors Cycling Sports Group. We've already shown you the new Zaskars and alloy Fury – here's the best of the rest.

Reintroduced for 2012, the titanium Xizang (£1,699.99) has been reincarnated as a 29er, with modern updates including a tapered 1-1/8 to 1-1/2in head tube, post mount disc tabs and replaceable rear mech hanger.

Continuing the 29er hardtail theme is the new Zaskar Carbon 9R Pro. We first saw this bike at GT's Utah press camp but details of UK pricing and availability have now been announced – it's due to hit shops in October priced at £3,299.99, with a full Shimano Deore XT groupset, Rockshox SID RLT 100mm-travel fork and DT Swiss M1800 wheelset.

GT zaskar carbon 9r pro:

GT Zaskar Carbon 9R Pro

Anyone wanting to turn the Zaskar into a singlespeed is in luck, thanks to these new replaceable sliding dropouts. A price has yet to be confirmed, but GT expect them to cost around the £70 mark. 

GT replaceable dropouts:

New replaceable dropouts for the GT Zaskar

The Karakoram 1.0 (£999.99) gets updated for 2012, with a new chrome look and a mix of Shimano Deore components, Avid Elixir 1 brakes, RockShox XC32 fork and Alex TD24 Disc rims (The GT saddle shown here will be replaced with a WTB Pure Race on production bikes).

GT karakoram 1.0:

GT Karakoram 1.0

The Avalanche 1.0 is another 26in-wheeled hardtail with a similar build to the Karakoram, but a downgraded fork (RockShox XC30) and rims (All Terra HP17) help knock £200 off the price (£799.99).

GT avalanche 1.0:

Avalanche 1.0

There's a new model in GT's freeride range – the entry-level Distortion 3.0 (£1,699.99). A Marzocchi 44 RLO fork and X-Fusion 02 shock take care of suspension duties, with Shimano SLX mechs and Alivio shifters, Avid Elixir 1 brakes and Alex SX44 rims rounding off this sharp-looking bike.

GT distortion 3.0:

GT Distortion 3.0

Finally, the Alloy Fury 2.0 is a more affordable alternative to the full-carbon Fury downhill bike. UK pricing has now been confirmed as £2,299.99, which includes SRAM X5 shifting kit, FSA Gravity X-Moto cranks and Avid Elixir 3 brakes.

GT alloy fury 2.0:

GT Alloy Fury 2.0

After early cycling flirtations with the Tour de France on childhood holidays, John Whitney fell for it hook, line and sinker in his mid-20s as an escape from the more sedate sports of his youth. As a classically trained news reporter, he snagged his dream job as a cycling writer straight out of college and is now fully immersed in the industry and wouldn't have it any other way.
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