DT Swiss XMC130 QR15 fork review

Light and stiff, but costly

Our rating 
3.5 out of 5 star rating 3.5
GBP £859.99 RRP | USD $1,214.00
The XMC130 gobbles up rocks and roots faster than you can feed it

Our review

One of the best long-travel cross-country/trail forks going, but very pricey
Skip to view product specifications

Aggressive cross-country riders will love DT Swiss’s light, stiff 130mm travel QR15 XMC fork. We’ve been bashing one of the company’s shorter travel XMC100 forks for a year and it’s as buttery smooth now as it was then, despite minimal care. So far the XMC130 is heading towards a similar report card.

Advertisement

Standard DT Swiss open dropouts offer adequate front end stiffness for fast cross-country, but as travel creeps over 100mm, riders now expect forks to be available in one of the lightweight through-axle formats. DT Swiss use Shimano’s QR15 system and the XMC 130 carbon lowers are graced by some very neat through-axle dropouts.

Wheel insertion and removal is a pleasure, thanks to the DT Swiss RWS through-axle ratcheting skewer. The QR15 option adds 150g to the open dropout XMC130 but we feel the 130mm model benefits from a stronger union between dropouts and front hub. The extra stiffness means steering response is spot on, too. 

The fork’s threshold launch control allows you to shorten it on long or steep climbs. Depending on the setting, the fork can be reactivated to its original length by a certain bump force. It takes a while to become intuitive but it’s a useful feature.

The XMC130 is one of the least sticky forks we’ve ridden. From the off it moves through its travel with barely any stiction. The light, well controlled action makes it seem bigger than it is as it gobbles up lumps, bumps, rocks and roots as fast as you can feed it.

Advertisement

Cost is where we have an issue. The RRP of this fork has risen over £200 since we got it. It’s now much more expensive than its direct competitors: the RockShox Reba 120 Maxle Light and Fox 120 RLC. They work as well and can both be had for just over £600 – and cheaper if you buy online. This doesn’t detract from the fact that the XMC130 performs brilliantly and is a good looking fork, it just prices itself out of contention for most riders.

Product Specifications

Product

Name XMC130 QR15 (09)
Brand DT Swiss

Weight (g) 1695
Available Colours Carbon Metallic Grey
Wheel Size 26 29
Steerer Size 1 1/8
Material Aluminium Carbon Fibre Magnesium
Stanchion Diameter 32
Spring Type One Side Air One Side Coil
Disc Caliper Mount I.S
Max. Fork Travel 130mm
Damping Adjustment Air spring pressure Compression Adjust Rebound
Lockout Yes