Giant Anthem 2 – 07 model review

As our 06 Bike Of The Year, Giant's Anthem has got a lot to live up to in 2007. A carbon composite frame comes in for the top level Anthem Advanced but otherwise the basics are unchanged throughout the alloy range.

Our rating 
4.5 out of 5 star rating 4.5
GBP £1,700.00 RRP | USD $1,875.00

Our review

Superb, uber-fast raced bred beast of a bike
Skip to view product specifications

As What Mountain Bike magazine’s 06 Bike Of The Year, Giant’s Anthem has got a lot to live up to in 2007. A carbon composite frame comes in for the top level Anthem Advanced, but otherwise the basics are unchanged throughout the alloy range. But that doesn’t mean they haven’t improved.

Advertisement

Frame

You won’t be able to resist hammering up every climb

The chassis is the same stripped to the bone Allux 6000 as before: that means it’s still handbuilt by Giant’s top employees on a dedicated specialist production line and is one of the lightest race frames around.

Hydroformed tubing also makes it surprisingly tough. Integrated headset design keeps the head low, while disc specific design gives clean hose routing and there’s room for a bottle cage placement on the down tube.

Mud clearance is a little tight with tyres over 2.1in, but we’ve never had any trouble with narrower race rubber on it. Short forged links keep the Maestro suspension taut and wobble free. The layout is geared towards ‘head down arse up’ aggression, with a long stretch to the bars even on the medium model. Steering angles are similarly uncompromising with radical ‘blink and you’ve cleaned a tight corner’ 72 degree steering geometry.

Ride

In fact, ‘blink and you’ve done it’ encapsulates the whole Anthem experience. Even this entry level model distils the essence of all those insane superfast ‘Billy Whizz/Flash’ characters into every ride. You won’t be able to resist hammering up every climb or out of every corner, it won’t let you stop until you’re spinning the big ring in a blur and leaving riding mates far, far behind.

There’s a hint of movement under power, but traction is phenomenal and adhesion through corners or even rocky sections is startling for such a short travel bike. The long, low position nails climbing and cornering traction while providing maximum breathing space and aggressive attitude. Even when you’re totally knackered it won’t let you relax and concede defeat. It has to be first, simple as that.

Equipment

The Fox Float RP2 rear shock and a RockShox Recon 327 fork boost reliability and make for a much less notchy ride than last year. Avid Juicy 3 brakes stop the ruthless speed nicely. WTB’s lightweight Laser Disc XC rims mean maximum acceleration with every pedal stroke while Hutchinson’s latest Piranha semi-slick equals serious speed in dry conditions with a lovely cushy feel. They’re sketchy as hell in wet or muddy conditions though, so budget for some mud tyres if you’re riding all year round.

From hardened hardtail race heads to loony tunes freeriders, whoever we put on the Anthem, they instantly went nuts. Sprinting out of corners, screaming climbs and ripping descents is all unavoidable.

Advertisement

It’s insane lust for speed totally overrules its 27lb weight and with quality kit to go, the Anthem 2 is the speed bike to beat this year.

Product Specifications

Product

Name Anthem 2
Brand Giant

Cassette SRAM PG950 11-34
Seatpost EA30
Rear Tyre Piranha
Front Tyre Size 26x2.0
Front Tyre Piranha
Available Sizes 14.5 Inches 16 Inches 18 Inches 20 Inches 22 Inches
Available Colours Blue/Silver
Weight (kg) 11.7
Stem EA30
Shifters Deore
Seat Angle 73
Chain Shimano HG-73
Saddle Silverado Race
Rear Shock Float RP2
Rear Derailleur Shimano XT
Headset Type Integrated Aheadset
Head Angle 72
Handlebar EA30
Front Derailleur Shimano Deore
Frame Material ALUXX
Fork Recon 327
Rear Tyre Size 26x2.0