Improved geometry and increased value for money — 2019 Vitus mountain bike range

Updated favourites and a new XC bike

Vitus has just revamped its entire range of mountain bikes for 2019, including popular models such as the Nucleus, Sentier, Escarpe and Sommet.

It has also introduced the Rapide, an XC-focussed bike that is available in both carbon and alloy versions.

The number of bikes available is fairly bewildering, but fear not — we’ve taken a fine-tooth comb to the whole lot and have pulled out the key details from the extensive Vitus 2019 range for your viewing pleasure.

We’ve also taken delivery of the Escarpe VRX 29 and a Nucleus 27 VRX for a full review. So be sure to check out our first looks of these two bikes for the full scoop on these two key models.

As always, the direct to consumer Vitus brand is available exclusively through Wiggle and Chain Reaction Cycles. There is no set international pricing available, but international postage is available.

Vitus Nucleus Junior range overview

The Nucleus is available in kids-friendly sizes
The Nucleus is available in kids-friendly sizes

The Nucleus Junior is Vitus’s range of kid-sized bikes, with options for either 24- or 26-inch wheels.

The bikes are well specced with bang-on-trend long and slack geometry that will allow your tots to get as radical as you.

Vitus Nucleus 24

  • 65mm travel Spinner air-sprung fork
  • Shimano 1x9 drivetrain
  • Tektro HD-M290 brakes
  • Maxxis Snyper 24x2.0 tyres

Vitus Nucleus 26

  • 100mm travel Spinner air-sprung fork
  • Shimano 1x9 drivetrain
  • Tektro HD-M290 brakes
  • WTB Trailboss 26x2.25 tyres

Vitus Nucleus 27.5 and 29 range overview

The Nucleus is Vitus’s best selling, all round hardtail.

The bike is available in both 29 and 27.5in flavours. Despite its do-it-all attitude, it features relatively progressive geometry, which should make for confident and capable handling.

Vitus Nucleus 27 VR

  • Suntour SF14-XCR32 120mm travel fork
  • Tektro HD-M290 brakes
  • Shimano Altus 2x9 drivetrain
  • WTB 29mm rims and Vigilante/Trailboss tyres

The Nucleus 27 VR — the cheapest bike in the Nucleus range at £499 — is Vitus’s best selling bike.

The bike features a decent 2x9 Shimano Altus drivetrain and perfectly serviceable Tektro brakes. For those looking for a mountain bike under £500, this may be a great option.

Vitus Nucleus 27 VRW women’s  

The Nucleus WMN comes with a women's-specific frame
The Nucleus WMN comes with a women's-specific frame

  • Suntour SF14-XCR32 120mm travel fork
  • Tektro HD-M290 brakes
  • Shimano Altus 2x9 drivetrain
  • WTB 29mm rims and Vigilante/Trailboss tyres

Unlike some brands, the women's version of the Nucleus has a dedicated women’s-specific frameset alongside finishing kit. The build is otherwise the same as the men's equivalent.

Vitus Nucleus 27 VRS  

  • Suntour SF19-XCR32 Boost 120mm travel fork
  • Tektro HD-M290 brakes
  • Shimano Acera 2x9 drivetrain
  • WTB 29mm rims and Vigilante/Trailboss tyres

Vitus Nucleus 27 VRX  

The Nucleus 27 VRX looks to be great value for money
The Nucleus 27 VRX looks to be great value for money

  • Suntour SF19 Raidon 32 Boost 120mm travel fork
  • Shimano MT-400 brakes
  • Shimano Deore 1x10 drivetrain
  • WTB 29mm rims and Schwalbe Magic Mary 27.5 x 2.35 tyres

On paper at least, the Nucleus 27 VRX stands out as a real winner in terms of value for money, with a decent air-sprung Suntour fork and a 1x Deore groupset all for under £700.

We’ve taken delivery of this bike for review, so be sure to check out our first look in the meantime!

Vitus Nucleus 29 VR  

  • Suntour SF14-XCR32 Boost 120mm travel fork
  • Tektro HD-M290 brakes
  • Shimano Altus 2x9 drivetrain
  • WTB 29mm rims and Vigilante/Trailboss tyres

Vitus Nucleus 29 VRS  

  • Suntour SF19-XCR32 Boost 120mm travel fork
  • Tektro HD-M290 brakes
  • Shimano Acera 2x9 drivetrain
  • WTB 29mm rims and Vigilante/Trailboss tyres

Vitus Sentier 27 and 29 range overview

The sentier is Vitus' more rowdy hardtail offering
The sentier is Vitus' more rowdy hardtail offering

The Sentier is similar to the Nucleus, but features more progressive geometry overall, with a 140mm fork, a slightly increased front-centre and a touch more slack head-angle compared to the more do-it-all model.

The bikes start at £849.99 for a Shimano Deore and RockShox Recon-equipped model, rising to £999 for a Shimano SLX and RockShox Sektor-equipped bike.

Vitus Sentier

  • 140mm RockShox Recon RL fork
  • 1x10 Deore drivetrain
  • Shimano MT-400 disc brakes
  • 27.5 x 2.6 Maxxis Minion DHF / 27.5 x 2.6 Rekon 3C tyres

Vitus Sentier W

  • 140mm RockShox Recon RL fork
  • 1x10 Deore drivetrain
  • Shimano MT-400 disc brakes
  • 27.5 x 2.6 Maxxis Minion DHF / 27.5 x 2.6 Rekon 3C tyres
  • £849.99 — estimated availability from 15 November

Like the women’s version of the Nucleus, the Sentier W has a women’s-specific frameset and finishing kit, but otherwise has the same build as the men’s equivalent.

Vitus Sentier VR

  • 140mm RockShox Sektor RL fork
  • 1x11 SLX drivetrain
  • Raceface Aefect cranks
  • Shimano MT-500 disc brakes
  • 27.5 x 2.6 Schwalbe Magic Mary / 27.5 x 2.6 Nobby Nic tyres

Vitus Sentier VRS

  • 140mm RockShox Revelation RC fork
  • 1x12 NX Eagle drivetrain
  • SRAM NX Eagle crankset
  • SRAM Guide disc brakes
  • 27.5 x 2.6 Schwalbe Magic Mary / 27.5 x 2.6 Nobby Nic tyres

Vitus Sentier VRX

  • 140mm RockShox Revelation RC fork
  • 1x11 Shimano XT drivetrain
  • Shimano XT brakes
  • 27.5 x 2.6 Schwalbe Magic Mary / 27.5 x 2.6 Nobby Nic tyres

Vitus Sentier 29

  • 130mm RockShox Recon RL fork
  • 1x10 Deore drivetrain
  • Shimano MT-400 disc brakes
  • 29 x 2.6 Maxxis Minion DHF /29 x 2.6 Rekon 3C tyres

Vitus Sentier 29 VR

  • 140mm RockShox Sektor RL fork
  • 1x11 SLX drivetrain
  • Raceface Aefect cranks
  • Shimano MT-500 disc brakes
  • 29 x 2.6 Schwalbe Magic Mary / 29 x 2.6 Nobby Nic tyres

Vitus Rapide XC alloy and carbon range overview

The Rapide is a new bike for 2018
The Rapide is a new bike for 2018

The Rapide is Vitus’s all-new XC-focussed 29er that is available in both alloy and carbon options.

The bikes start at £899.99 for an alloy, Shimano SLX-equipped model, rising to £2,499 for a carbon, XO1 Eagle-equipped bike.

A carbon frameset is also available at a distinctly affordable £799.

Rapide

  • 100mm RockShox Rekon RL Remote fork
  • Suntour Zeron crankset
  • Shimano MT-400 brakes
  • 1x11 SLX drivetrain
  • Maxxis 29 x 2.2 Ardent Race / 29 x 2.2 Ikon 3C tyres

Rapide VR

  • 100mm RockShox Sektor RL remote fork
  • Shimano MT-400 brakes
  • 1x12 NX Eagle drivetrain
  • SRAM NX Eagle DUB crankset
  • Maxxis 29 x 2.2 Ardent Race / 29 x 2.2 Ikon 3C tyres

Rapide CR

  • 100mm RockShox Reba RL remote fork
  • SRAM Level T brakes
  • SRAM GX Eagle 1x12 drivetrain
  • Maxxis 29 x 2.2 Ardent Race / 29 x 2.2 Ikon 3C tyres
  • SRAM GX Eagle DUB crankset

Rapide CRX

  • 100mm RockShox SID RL remote fork
  • SRAM Level TL brakes
  • SRAM XO1 Eagle 1x12 drivetrain
  • Maxxis 29 x 2.2 Ardent Race / 29 x 2.2 Ikon 3C tyres
  • SRAM GX Eagle DUB crankset

Rapide CRX frameset

  • £799.99 — availability TBC
  • Buy the 2019 Vitus Rapide CRX frameset from Wiggle or Chain Reaction Cycles

Vitus Escarpe 27 and 29 range overview

The Escarpe has impressed before
The Escarpe has impressed before

The Vitus Escarpe is the brand’s 150/140mm (front/rear) travel trail bike.

The bike comes in both 27.5- and 29-inch options, but be aware that the framesets are wheel size specific and have been optimised accordingly.

The alloy frame is designed around Boost spacing and uses a metric trunnion mount shock.

Brand-X Ascend droppers feature across the range and all the bikes come tubeless-ready with Maxxis tyres.

The progressive geometry should let you ride hard, while hassle-free 1x-drivetrains can be backed up with an ISCG chain guide if needed.

Previous generations of the Escarpe have scored well in our reviews and we have little doubt that the 2019 models will fare equally well.

Vitus Escarpe 27

  • 150mm RockShox Sektor RL fork
  • RockShox Deluxe R shock
  • 1x11 SRAM NX drivetrain
  • Shimano MT400 brakes
  • Maxxis Minion DHF 27.5 x 2.6/ Maxxis Rekon 27.5 x 2.6 tyres

Vitus Escarpe 27 VR

  • 150mm RockShox Revelation Charger RC fork
  • RockShox Deluxe RT shock
  • 1x12 SRAM NX Eagle drivetrain
  • SRAM Guide R brakes
  • Maxxis Minion DHF 27.5 x 2.6 / Maxxis Rekon 27.5 x 2.6 tyres

Vitus Escarpe 27 VRX

  • 150mm Fox 36 FIT GRIP2 Factory fork
  • Fox DPX2 Factory shock
  • 1x11 Shimano XT drivetrain
  • SRAM Guide RE brakes
  • DT Swiss M1700 Spline 30 wheelset
  • Maxxis Minion DHF 27.5 x 2.6 / Maxxis Rekon 27.5 x 2.6 tyres

Vitus Escarpe 29 VR

  • 150mm RockShox Revelation Charger RC fork
  • RockShox Deluxe RT shock
  • 1x12 SRAM NX Eagle drivetrain
  • SRAM Guide R brakes
  • Maxxis Minion DHF 29 x 2.5 / Maxxis DHR II 29 x 2.4 tyres

Vitus Escarpe 29 VRX

  • 150mm Fox 36 FIT GRIP2 Factory fork
  • Fox DPX2 Factory shock
  • 1x11 Shimano XT drivetrain
  • SRAM Guide RE brakes
  • DT Swiss M1700 Spline 30 wheelset
  • Maxxis Minion DHF 29 x 2.5 / Maxxis DHR II 29 x 2.4 tyres

We’ve got this range-topping model in for testing and, on paper at least, it looks like a real winner.

Be sure to check out our first look and expect a full review soon.

Vitus Escarpe VRX frameset

  • Specific framesets available for 27.5- and 29-inch wheel sizes
  • Fox DPX2 Factory shock
  • £1,199.99 — availability TBC
  • Buy the 2019 Vitus Escarpe 29 VRX frameset from Wiggle or Chain Reaction Cycles

Vitus Sommet range overview

The Sommet is a more enduro-friendly model
The Sommet is a more enduro-friendly model

This is Vitus’s alloy framed, 27.5-inch wheeled enduro bike with 170/160mm travel front/rear.

The modern geometry will let you push hard with your riding at a more reasonable price than the carbon model.

That doesn’t mean it sacrifices features — with clearances for up to a 2.6-inch tyre, a dropper post on both models, ISCG05 chain guide mounts, Boost spacing, a metric trunnion shock, tubeless-ready wheels and Maxxis 3C tyres, the Sommet is very well specced out of the box.

Vitus Sommet

  • 170mm Manitou Mattoc COMP fork
  • RockShox Deluxe RT shock
  • 1x11 SRAM NX transmission
  • Shimano MT500 brakes
  • Maxxis Minion DHF 3C 27.5 x 2.5 front and rear

Vitus Sommet VR

  • 170mm RockShox Yari Charger RC fork
  • RockShox Super Deluxe R shock
  • 1x12 SRAM NX Eagle drivetrain
  • SRAM Guide RE brakes
  • Maxxis Minion DHF 3C 27.5 x 2.5 front and rear

This particular bike looks to be a relatively affordable enduro-friendly option with high-end RockShox suspension and an NX Eagle drivetrain.

We’re particularly pleased with the choice of tyres as we’ve rated the Maxxis Minions very highly in the past

Vitus Sommet frameset

  • RockShox Super Deluxe R shock
  • £1,099.99 — availability TBC
  • Buy the 2019 Vitus Sommet frameset from Wiggle or Chain Reaction Cycles

Vitus Sommet Carbon range overview

If you’re looking for something a little more high-end, then the Sommet Carbon ups the bling factor.

The bike shares the specs of the alloy version, but with the added performance of a carbon build.

Vitus Sommet CRS

  • 170mm RockShox Lyrik Charger 2 RC fork
  • RockShox Super Deluxe R shock
  • 1x12 SRAM GX Eagle drivetrain
  • SRAM Guide RE brakes
  • Maxxis Minion DHF 3C 27.5 x 2.5 front and rear

Vitus Sommet CRX

  • 170mm Fox 36 FIT GRIP2 Factory fork
  • Fox DPX2 Factory shock
  • 1x11 Shimano XT drivetrain
  • SRAM Code R brakes
  • DT Swiss E1700 Spline 30 wheelset
  • Maxxis Minion DHF 3C 27.5 x 2.5 front and rear

Vitus Sommet CRX frameset

  • Fox DPX2 Factory shock
  • £1,799.99 — availability TBC
  • Buy the 2019 Vitus Sommet CRX from Wiggle or Chain Reaction Cycles

Vitus Dominer DH 27.5

The Vitus Dominer is a race-proven, 200mm travel downhill bike.

For 2019, it features an updated linkage and kinematics along with some tweaks to the geometry.

The Dominer isn’t due to arrive until the end of February 2019, so we don’t have detailed specs yet.

We do know that the full build will cost £2,500, while the frameset with a RockShox Super Deluxe Coil RC shock will come in at £1,499.99.

Vitus E-Sommet range overview

An e-assisted version of the Sommet is also available
An e-assisted version of the Sommet is also available

Based on the geometry of the non-assisted Sommet, the E-Sommet should be able to ride hard and provide you with the extra assistance of a motor for the way back up the hill.

We rate the Shimano STEPS system and are pleased to see Vitus has opted for Maxxis tyres with burly Double Down casings to deal with the extra wear and tear of a heavy e-bike.

We’re also happy that the prices remain reasonable too, because the high cost of entry to the e-bike world is a barrier for many.

Vitus E-Sommet

  • Shimano E7000 STEPS motor
  • 170mm RockShox Yari RC fork
  • RockShox Super Deluxe R shock
  • 1x10 Shimano Deore transmission
  • Shimano M520 brakes
  • Maxxis Minion DHF 27.5 x 2.5 / Maxxis High Roller II 27.5 x 2.5

Vitus E-Sommet VR

  • Shimano E8000 STEPS motor
  • 170mm RockShox Lyrik Charger 2 RC2 fork
  • RockShox Super Deluxe RC3 shock
  • 1x11 Shimano XT/SLX transmission
  • SRAM Guide RE brakes
  • Maxxis minion DHF 27.5 x 2.5 / Maxxis High Roller II 27.5 x 2.5
Jack Luke

Staff Writer, UK
Jack has been riding and fettling with bikes for his whole life. Always in search of the hippest new niche in cycling, Jack is a self-confessed gravel dork and thinks nothing of bivouacking on a beach after work. Also fond of cup and cone bearings, skids and tan wall tyres.
  • Discipline: Long days in the saddle by either road or mountain bike
  • Preferred Terrain: Happiest when on a rural road by the coast or crossing a remote mountain pass. Also partial to a cheeky gravel adventure or an arduous hike-a-bike.
  • Current Bikes: Custom Genesis Croix de Fer all road adventure wagon, Niner EMD 9.
  • Dream Bike: A rigid 44 Bikes Marauder, all black please.
  • Beer of Choice: Caesar Augustus
  • Location: Bristol, UK

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