Santa Cruz Nomad review

On first impressions, you'll either love the Nomad's pressure formed S-curve top tube or think, as one witty wag put it, 'it looks like a dog having a crap'. Either way,there's no denying that the Nomad is distinctive enough to stand out from the common herd.

Our rating 
4.5 out of 5 star rating 4.5
GBP £3,199.00 RRP

Our review

Frighteningly fast all-rounder that'll play in big terrain all day long
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On first visual impressions, you’ll either fall in love with the Nomad’s pressure formed S-curve top tube or, as one wag put it, think it looks ‘like a dog having a crap’.


Either way, there’s no denying that the Nomad is distinctive enough to make you stand out from the common herd – and, at a couple of pennies short of £3200, that’s exactly what you’ll be looking for in a bike.

Despite a couple of gripes with the Nomad in the middle and end stroke, the VPP (Virtual Pivot Point) system still managed to impress us, particularly when it came to steep, technical terrain. Pace’s RC41 Fighter fork was super supple, with easy sag, good stiffness and big hit control, meaning that the Nomad stayed remarkably light and lively on the hills, where we shot up as if we were riding on Tarmac.

If you’re brave enough to handle it, the Nomad will take you to places with your riding that you’ve never been to before. The mixture of a sublime frame, Hope brakes that promise to stop you on a Dime and a suspension setup that’s perfectly balanced to let you concentrate on your line rather than whether or not you’re about to fly over the handlebars, means that you’re guaranteed to feel the need for speed on a regular basis.


The Nomad comes in a number of different setup options, so you’re sure to find the perfect ride for you.

Product Specifications


Name Nomad
Brand Santa Cruz

Bottom Bracket Shimano XT
Spokes Brand Shimano
Max. Fork Travel 165mm
Colour Black
Wheelset XM819
Rear Tyre Size 26x2.1
Rear Tyre Nevegal
Front Tyre Size 26x2.1
Front Tyre Nevegal
Available Sizes L M S
Available Colours Silver
Weight (kg) 14.2
Stem Evolve XC
Shifters XT 9
Seatpost Evolve XC
Seat Angle 71
Chain Shimano HG-53
Saddle WTB Pure V
Rims Mavic XM-317
Rear Shock Float RP23
Rear Hub Shimano Deore
Rear Derailleur Shimano XT
Pedals M505
Headset Type Aheadset
Head Angle 68
Handlebar Evolve XC
Front Hub XT Disc R
Front Derailleur Shimano XT
Frame Weight 3240
Frame Material Aluminium
Cranks Shimano XT
Handlebar Type Riser