A couple of years back SRAM released X01 DH, a downhill version of its then second-tier mountain bike drivetrain. X01 DH was available in seven- or 10-speed configurations, with the latter making use of a custom mini block 10-24t cassette with ratios chosen specifically for downhill riders. The group continues to hold its own for those on the race circuit but for many its lightweight components were simply too costly.
Today, SRAM has launched GX DH, a considerably more affordable groupset for the downhill crowd. The shifter, cassette and rear derailleur are all 7spd-specific components with designs very similar to those already available from SRAM's other groups. Rather than introducing its own chainset, SRAM instead recommends its sister brand Truvativ's Descendant DH crank. Similarly, SRAM lists each of the GX DH components as backwards compatible with parts from its higher tier X01 DH drivetrain.
GX DH rear derailleur
The new GX DH looks familiar and indeed most of its tech transfers from SRAM's GX transmission , including the Roller Bearing Clutch mechanism, the X-Horizon parallelogram design and Cage Lock. The 12-tooth pulley wheels also carry over. Our sample weighed in at 264g.
The retail price stands at £88 / €119 / US$104
SRAM PG-720 cassette
All new is the PG-270 cassette, and it's what SRAM is calling the most affordable, full-featured, dedicated downhill cassette available right now. In comparison with the XG-795 10-24t item from SRAM's existing X01 DH group the PG-270 remains seven-speed but gets a slightly shorter final drive with an 11-25t spread (11,13,15,17,19,22,25). The cassette also mounts on a regular splined body rather than SRAM's proprietary XD Driver. Our sample cassette tipped the BikeRadar scales at 222g.
The retail price stands at £26/€36/US$30.
SRAM GX DH shifter
The transmission is designed to work with SRAM's PC-1130 11-speed chain. Our test shifter, complete with a full-length cable, weighs 122g. Its discrete clamp and bolt weighed a further 10g.
The retail price is £35 / €48 / US$43.
Product is expected to land in shops later this month; we'll be giving this set a good hammering in the meantime and we'll keep you posted on how it performs.