Help choosing between 3 AM bikes

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    • #186425

      Hi All! I’m looking to get back into mountain biking after quite some time off. I used to ride an old Diamondback, but I have outgrown that bike and am in the market for something new.

      I’m looking for an all mountain/enduro bike. Something that I can pedal on trails and also let it rip downhill and in bike parks. I’m trying to stay around $2000 give or take 200-300 dollars max.

      From what I’ve researched, I’m looking for a full suspension with 150-160mm of travel, and I’d prefer 27.5in wheels. I’m a short guy at about 5′ 4″, so I’d need a small sized bike.

      I’ve visited just about all the local bike shops in my area worth visiting and have also checked out and have 3 bikes picked out but I am stuck on which to get.

      1 – Santa Cruz Heckler (D)

      2 – Giant Trance 27.5 (3)

      3 – Breezer Repack Pro

      Out of the three, I was able to see in person both a Santa Cruz Heckler and Giant Trance. I am favoring the Heckler right now based on everything I have read about it online.

      What I am interested in is, how does the Breezer compare to Heckler in terms of parts and value? Which of the three would be a good choice for me based on the info I’ve given? And if anyone has any other suggestions for bikes I haven’t listed, I’m open to checking them out.


    • #186439

      I say go test ride them and see what feels best to you. If you have to then rent them, money spent on rental will be well worth it in the end.

      I just built up an Enduro and love it so maybe checkout what Specialized has to offer as well?

    • #186440

      Also, about the rentals… Some shops will let you have the price of the rental off of the purchase of the bike if you’re really nice to them about it. So it’s definitely worth it to give ’em a try for at least a few hours.

    • #186496

      I have to echo macr88 on this:  you really need to throw a leg over each one — on actual dirt and rock if you can.

      The three bikes you have picked have very different geometries, suspension designs, and handling characteristics.

      Just look at the difference in top tube lengths among the three.

      Heckler — 553 mm

      Trance — 569 mm

      Breezer — 600 mm

      That’s a huge difference and the Heckler will feel nothing like the Repack.  If you like a short top tube, then the Heckler may be a good choice.  But if you like a long top tube, or like to run a short stem for more precise steering, then the Breezer is a better choice.  The Trance is closer to the Heckler but not as extreme.

      The Heckler employs a rather primitive single pivot suspension (not dogging it–I own two bikes with single pivot suspensions and love them both) while the others have more highly evolved suspension designs which are likely to be more efficient.  You won’t know if this is meaningful to you until you take them out on a big climb/rocky descent.

    • #186508

      for me there would be no question, I would go Trance.

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