GT will offer two models of their carbon Fury downhill machine — Team and World Cup — the latter of which is a Atherton spec’d edition costing $8,000. But despite the buzz behind the downhill team, two old-school models proved to be the highlight of GT’s 2013 line — the titanium Xizang and Edge.
Beyond the shine of the expertly welded, Taiwanese titanium frames, GT has a host of other interesting new models and stories. New bike highlights include three Hans Rey models — Avalanche, Karakoram, and Zaskar 100 — to celebrate GT’s 25-year sponsorship of the iconic rider. The Zaskar 100 comes with a commemorative coffee table book. The other two come with a discount voucher for the book.
GT’s new titanium frames: Xizang and Edge Ti
“We wanted to make a heritage play, but also come out with something that’s really relevant to today’s bike market,” said Chris Hopwood, GT’s brand manager. “We wanted to design a bike that was similar to the original Xizang from the ’90s, that high-end skunk-works frame built in the Longmont, Colorado, facility where they were all hand-welded by one individual. That was one of the things we were trying to find. When we looked for frame partners for this we wanted a factory that was very small and we found one, a Taiwanese factory that only builds high-end steel and titanium.”
The Xizang, which is now a 29er, will sell for $2,000 with a headset, seat collar and derailleur hanger. The titanium Edge Ti adds a matching GT carbon fork — the same found on their GTR carbon road models — to the mix for the same price. GT have brought 500 of each to the US and they are in shops now.
Edge Ti is first polished, then taped for graphics before a bead blast; the result is a wonderful polished logo package
Line highlights: ’Cross disc, Hans Rey and the Zaskar Pro
GT have also joined the fray with a disc equipped cyclo-cross bike. The 6061 frame is paired to a carbon fork and will come in three complete bike packages. All three sport GT’s triple triangle frame design. The Type CX Pro comes with a mix of Shimano 105 level components for around $2,000.
GT have sponsored trials and freerider, Hans Rey, for 25 years. “As far as we know it’s the longest running sponsorship for a mountain bike athlete to date,” said Hopwood. “We wanted to give him his own bikes, a collection to commemorate the year. The bike he rides is the Zaskar 100, that’s his favorite trail bike, and his favorite that we’ve ever made.”
“Hans made a coffee table book of his exploits over the last 25 years with GT,” Hopwood said. “It’s filled with all of those stories from the magazines; he was able to compile all of that stuff along with photos and stuff that people haven’t seen for a long time to build this amazing book about all of his trips and the stories they produced. When you purchase one of these bikes you’ll be offered a discount on the book.”
GT’s Hans Rey edition Karakoram 29er
GT have built Rey three commemorative bikes: Avalanche and Karakoram hardtails, which run around $1,000 and come with components from long time Rey sponsors, Shimano, Kenda and Crankbrothers.
The third model is the Zaskar 100 full suspension bike, which comes set up in Rey’s preferred trail configuration with a 120mm fork, larger H-Factor 2.2in tires from Kenda and a 180mm front brake rotor.
GT also have a new Zaskar LE Pro, which is pitched as a true privateer’s rig. The bike 6069 aluminum frame sports a professional component complement that keeps its weight in the range of todays top-tier carbon rigs, but at half the price. The Zaskar LE Pro costs around $4,000.
Finally, the Fury downhill bike is present as two models for 2013 a Team edition and a Pro model, which sports a similar specification to the Athertons’ race bikes. The only, major, change for 2013 is the inclusion of a Cane Creek AngleSet with a 1.5° offset cup, which Hopwood said brings the head angle to 63°.
The 2013 Fury Team costs $6,000