GT’s long travel I (Independent) Drive gets beefed up with a tapered head tube and new bearing system to create an impressively stiff frame considering its complexity.
By joining the two frame halves high up it takes square-edged hits well as long as you’re off the power. The mainframe and subframe linked transmission also gives a consistent, high traction connection to the ground.
There’s plenty of ground and tyre clearance too, so there’s little that’ll stop it going up or down in a straight line. Its weight and morale-sapping soft chain feel will crush all but the strongest riders very quickly if you hurry it though.
The 2.4in Ardent tyres and wide and low flat bar give it an impressively surefooted feel through sweeping corners. The titanium-railed saddle seems an odd use of resources, but the 15mm axle Sektor TK fork copes fine and the remote control height adjust seat post stops the curved seat tube being an issue.
Head angle is steep for a 150mm travel bike, which reduces technical terrain confidence. The long, flexy stem adds serious trip up potential if you turn it hard.