Lancashire-based Ribble has a wide range of road bikes, built with a focus on value, but the HT Ti is its first mountain bike in decades.
With its aggressive geometry, it should shine some mud-spattered light on the brand in MTB circles.
Ribble HT Ti GX Eagle frame
Bare titanium tubing and brushed-metal logos give the HT Ti a simple, understated aesthetic and mean it should stay looking fresh even if it picks up some trail scrapes.
Gussets and braces increase strength and stiffness where needed, alongside a bolt-thru rear end. You also get simple, if rattly, internal cable routing.
The geometry is contemporary, with the large size boasting a roomy 473mm reach, slack 64-degree head angle, relatively steep (on a hardtail) 74-degree seat angle and snappy 430mm chainstays, plus a bottom bracket that sits 43mm below the axles.
Ribble HT Ti GX Eagle kit
The GX model comes with a SRAM GX Eagle groupset, paired with Guide R brakes. Plugged in up front is a RockShox Pike Select+ fork with 150mm of travel.
Hope Fortus wheels with wide rims (30mm internal) are shod with 2.6in Schwalbe Nobby Nic tyres.
Race Face provides the bulk of the finishing kit.
Ribble HT Ti GX Eagle ride impressions
Titanium is known for its ride quality, but it’s just as possible to build a compliant alloy frame as it is a stiff Ti one. Fortunately, the Ribble is on the right side of harsh, at least with the 2.6in tyres specced here.
There’s no denying that on rough, chattery trails the rigid back end reduces speed and adds to fatigue. But the HT Ti is surprisingly smooth compared to some hardtails, and it’s easy enough to guide the bike either side of the roughest stuff or pop it over it.
The Pike Select+ is an excellent trail fork, with a plush, controlled action and decent adjustability. I ran it fairly firm to help support the front end of the bike because, without any rear suspension movement, the dynamic geometry of a hardtail changes significantly as the fork compresses.
On steep, muddy tracks the Ribble excels. The long reach and slack head angle punt the front wheel out ahead of you, where it’s easily weighted to maximise grip. So long as you’re happy for the rear wheel to just do its thing behind, there’s little to hold you back – at least compared to other hardtails.
This is all with one major caveat – the bulk of my testing was done with a different front tyre, because the hard ADDIX Speedgrip-compound Nobby Nic specced here is a poor performer in virtually all situations, lacking grip and compromising confidence.
I’d recommend budgeting for at least a better front tyre, to help get the most out of the bike. At the back, a sturdier tyre wouldn’t go amiss, or at least an insert to help prevent pinch punctures when you inevitably get a little rowdier than planned.
Ribble HT Ti GX Eagle geometry (L)
- Seat angle: 74 degrees
- Head angle: 64 degrees
- Chainstay: 43cm / 16.93in
- Seat tube: 45.7cm / 18in
- Top tube: 65cm / 25.59in
- Bottom bracket drop: 4.3cm / 1.69in
- Wheelbase: 1,207mm / 47.52in
- Stack: 61.75cm / 24.31in
- Reach: 47.3cm / 18.62in
|Price||AUD $5708.00GBP £3199.00USD $3566.00|
|Weight||12.9kg (L) – Without pedals|
|Available sizes||S, M, L, XL|
|Brakes||SRAM Guide R, 180mm rotors|
|Cranks||SRAM GX Eagle|
|Fork||RockShox Pike Select+, 150mm (5.9in) travel|
|Handlebar||Race Face Chester, 780mm|
|Rear derailleur||SRAM GX Eagle|
|Saddle||WTB Koda Race|
|Seatpost||RockShox Reverb, 150mm|
|Shifter||SRAM GX Eagle|
|Stem||Race Face Chester, 40mm|
|Tyres||Schwalbe Nobby Nic ADDIX Speedgrip 27.5x2.6in|
|Wheels||Hope Fortus 30|