First look: Jamis Xenith SL

Sub-6kg road machine

A US$6500 bike from Jamis? Yup, you read correctly and at least on paper, we might even argue that it's a relative bargain at that. 

Jamis has been making steady strides upstream over the last years and the new Xenith SL is its latest salvo fired into the heated high-end road bike market.

Claimed weight is sub-900g on our 54cm tester courtesy of a healthy smattering of ultra-high modulus carbon fibre but Jamis has apparently been mindful of ride quality and stiffness. Frame details include so-called 'tri-oval' down tube and top tubes to optimise lateral rigidity and comfort, asymmetrical chain stays and full-length seat stays that Jamis says are more comfortable than monostay designs. Reinforcing ribs on the inner surfaces of both the seat- and chain stays augment lateral rigidity even further and a Jamis-designed and built one-piece carbon fork rounds out the chassis.

Our tester comes equipped with a top-shelf component package consisting of a SRAM Red gruppo, Zipp 404 tubulars, an FSA K-Force Light crankset, Easton cockpit and San Marco Aspide saddle. Total weight without pedals is a superb 5.98kg (13.16lb) straight out of the box.

Price: US$6500

James Huang

Technical Editor, US
James started as a roadie in 1990 with his high school team but switched to dirt in 1994 and has enjoyed both ever since. Anything that comes through his hands is bound to be taken apart, and those hands still sometimes smell like fork oil even though he retired from shop life in 2007. He prefers manual over automatic, fizzy over still, and the right way over the easy way.
  • Discipline: Mountain, road, cyclocross
  • Preferred Terrain: Up in the Colorado high-country where the singletrack is still single, the dirt is still brown, and the aspens are in full bloom. Also, those perfect stretches of pavement where the road snakes across the mountainside like an artist's paintbrush.
  • Beer of Choice: Mexican Coke
  • Location: Boulder, Colorado, USA

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