Answer ProTAPER 720 AM Carbon riser bar review£120.00

New-trick-packed old dog

BikeRadar score4.5/5

The ProTAPER bar is back and its light, stiff but comfortable performance blows the opposition away. Its carbon fibre construction gets a wrap of cross-weave fibre for impact resistance, as well as clamping zone reinforcement built into the tapering thickness layup, but it’s still light for a 28.4in wide bar.

The wide grip tape boosts stem clamp security and protects the central alignment markings. The extended shallow rise section still leaves room for controls and fork/seatpost remotes. The bar comes in almost flat 0.5in and higher rise 2in versions if this medium height 1in bar doesn’t suit.

What makes it stand out in an increasing range of high performance, high price, widespan carbon bars is its feel and performance on the trail. The shape is instantly welcoming, with more than enough width to add a real boost to your control compared to a conventional width bar.

Despite exceptional stiffness in terms of front wheel control and placement – as well as on our deflection rig – our wrists never felt abused, even on the longest, rockiest, baby head descents or big drops onto frozen landing zones.

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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