SRAM XX disc brake review£300.00

Fully adjustable trail stopper

BikeRadar score3.5/5

The most expensive mountain bike brake you can buy, SRAM’s new XX delivers outstanding control and a meaty power-to-weight ratio for those who can afford it.

This evolution of the Avid Elixir Mag CR uses a two-piece cast magnesium calliper plus titanium hardware all round and an alloy centre floating rotor to minimise weight.

The flip-flop design can cope with left-hand front brakers and the unique two-piece clamp syncs with XX shifters and fork lockout levers.

Initial power isn’t outstanding but both dyno and trail experience shows it builds with a perfectly linear progression to out-brake all but the biggest downhill models.

There’s a bit of flex from the magnesium lever, but still loads of fine control through the bite point-adjustable carbon lever. The organic pads take longer to bed in than standard sintered pads though, and SRAM state that it’s “not for lift accessed, downhill or aggressive all-mountain use”. We’ve only run it for a couple of months so far but have had no issues yet.

SRAM xx dry: sram xx dry
SRAM xx dry: sram xx dry

Dry all: dry all
Dry all: dry all

SRAM xx wet: sram xx wet
SRAM xx wet: sram xx wet

Wet all: wet all
Wet all: wet all

Guy Kesteven

Freelance Writer, UK
Guy started filling his brain with cycle stats and steaming up bike shop windows back in 1980. He worked the other side of those windows from '89 while getting a degree in “describing broken things covered in mud" (archaeology). Dug historical holes in the ground through the early '90s, then became a pro bike tester in '97. Guy has ridden thousands of bikes and even more components the world over since then and can remember them all in vivid, haunting detail. Can't remember where the car keys are, though.
  • Age: 45
  • Height: 180cm / 5' 11"
  • Weight: 68kg / 150lb
  • Waist: 76cm / 30in
  • Chest: 91cm / 36in
  • Discipline: Strict sadomasochist
  • Preferred Terrain: Technical off-piste singletrack and twisted back roads. Up, down, along — so long as it's faster than the last time he did it he's happy.
  • Current Bikes: An ever changing herd of test machines from Tri bikes to fat bikes and everything in between.
  • Dream Bike: His Nicolai Helius AM custom tandem
  • Beer of Choice: Theakston's Old Peculier (not Peculiar)
  • Location: Yorkshire, UK

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