As best I can tell, Haanjo is a word from the Sindhi language meaning havoc. More specifically, it’s a “violent and needless disturbance.” I’m not sure what the connection is to the gravel bike I’ve been testing; if anything, I’ve found the Diamondback Haanjo 6C prevents needless disturbance, floating over washboard gravel roads and keeping me stable enough to avoid violent collisions with the ground. I guess you could say the Haanjo and I get along together pretty well.
Test pilot profile height: 190cm (6’3″) weight: 72.5kg (160lb) testing zone: Southeast, USA
I’ll start this with a recap of the bike’s specs, or you can just jump to the meat of the review.
Diamondback Haanjo carbon frame and fork
The Haanjo carbon frame features disc brake mounts, 142x12mm rear axle spacing, and clearance for 700×37 or 650×47 tires. There are mounts for two water bottles inside the frame and another set on the underside of the down tube, seat stay mounts for a rack, and a slap protector installed on the chain stay. The carbon fork also features a 12mm thru axle and a couple mount points for accessories.
|Bike Stand Over Height||788.0 mm||808.0 mm||834.0 mm||858.0 mm|
|Bike Seat Tube Length||500.0 mm||530.0 mm||560.0 mm||590.0 mm|
|Bike Top Tube Length||525.0 mm||540.0 mm||560.0 mm||580.0 mm|
|Bike Head Tube Length||130.0 mm||155.0 mm||175.0 mm||200.0 mm|
|Bike Head Angle||69.0 °||70.0 °||71.0 °||72.0 °|
|Bike Seat Angle||74.5 °||73.5 °||72.5 °||72.0 °|
|Bike Wheel Base||1028.0 mm||1025.0 mm||1025.0 mm||1028.0 mm|
|Bike Chain Stay Length||430.0 mm||430.0 mm||430.0 mm||430.0 mm|
|Bike Fork Offset||45.0 mm||45.0 mm||45.0 mm||45.0 mm|
|Bike Bb Height||280.0 mm||280.0 mm||280.0 mm||280.0 mm|
|Bike Bb Drop||70.0 mm||70.0 mm||70.0 mm||70.0 mm|
|Bike Stem Length||80.0 mm||90.0 mm||100.0 mm||110.0 mm|
|Bike Handlebar Width||440.0 mm||440.0 mm||460.0 mm||460.0 mm|
|Bike Crank Length||170.0 mm||172.5 mm||172.5 mm||175.0 mm|
|Bike Seat Post Length||350.0 mm||350.0 mm||350.0 mm||350.0 mm|
|Bike Stack||543.0 mm||570.0 mm||593.0 mm||622.0 mm|
|Bike Reach||374.0 mm||371.0 mm||373.0 mm||378.0 mm|
|Bike Fork Length||395.0 mm||395.0 mm||395.0 mm||395.0 mm|
Diamondback describes the Haanjo geo as “endurance geometry,” though it appears that’s in reference to comfort over long distances rather than endurance racing per se. Depending on the frame size, the head tube angle ranges from 69° on the smallest size to 72° on the largest (59cm, tested). Similarly, the seat tube angles range from 74.5° to 72°.
Other notable frame specs include a 27.2mm diameter seat post, internal cable routing in the frame and fork, and front derailleur compatibility. The frame is Di2-ready but is not internal dropper post compatible.
Diamondback Haanjo 6C Carbon build specs
The Haanjo 6C is the most affordable carbon build available, and it’s also one of the few that features 650c wheels and a 1X drivetrain. The wider 650c tires and MTB-like single chainring help tip this build closer to the singletrack end of gravel riding compared to the others Diamondback offers. The wider tires also tend to be friendlier for new and recreational riders alike.
Starting at the cockpit, the aluminum drop bars are shaped with a 12° flare and are bolted to a HED alloy stem. The bars are wrapped well and have a thick, cushioned feel compared to a typical road bike setup. SRAM Rival 1 brake levers complete the front end while a WTB Silverado Race saddle sits atop an alloy HED fixed seat post.
The Haanjo 6C comes with an 11-speed drivetrain configured with a 38T Praxis Cadet crankset and a SRAM 11-42T cassette. HED Tomcat alloy wheels are wrapped in WTB Venture Plus tubeless tires. The brakes are TRP Spyre mechanical models gripping 160mm rotors front and rear.
All together, the 59cm build I have in for test weighs 9.8kg (21.6lb) with Shimano XT pedals installed.
On the trail
I’ve got a little outline I keep in my back pocket for bike reviews that goes something like this: talk about how the bike descends first since that’s the fun part, then go into how it climbs before sharing any observations about the frame and build kit. When it comes to a gravel bike review, the real fun for us mountain bikers is riding singletrack, even if it’s just short segments in between roads. It’s 2022 y’all, so let’s start with dessert.
The Diamondback Haanjo 6C is a fully capable singletrack shredder. Well, shredder is probably overselling it, but I found the Haanjo to be totally adequate for trail riding. Starting with the pros, the narrow bars offer great clearance on tight trails and the wide, 650x47c tires roll into and over rocks and roots easily. The bike is lightweight so on the right trails — like hardpack, flowy ones — it feels like a rocket.
Still, on the trail it’s clear this is not a mountain bike. I took the Haanjo on my regular Tuesday night group ride and found myself sticking to the back of the pack since I just couldn’t keep up on the descents. Steep singletrack climbs were tricky as well given the lack of a substantial tread on the WTB Venture tires. The mechanical disc brakes require planning ahead for stops, and the fixed seat position is frightening on steep singletrack descents. Still, just being able to hang on a mountain bike ride with the Haanjo and not totally hating it says a lot about the bike’s versatility.
On gravel: The Diamondback Haanjo 6C
In what should come as a surprise to no one, the Diamondback Haanjo 6C really shines riding on gravel roads. The carbon frame and fork, along with the wide tires, does a great job soaking up washboard vibrations and keeping the bike on line at speed. In fact I would say the bike handles washboard better than most of the mountain bikes I’ve ridden, especially those with carbon frames.
The handling is snappy and responsive thanks to the steep, 72° head tube angle on the ginormous 59cm frame I tested. The flip side to that is I found myself white knuckling the fastest descents on chunky gravel with my weight shifted so far forward.
The Haanjo 6C comes specced with a HED aluminum handlebar with a 12° flare that I found mostly works great. It’s wrapped in vibration damping Diamondback Endurance Gel tape that’s grippy and spongy, worthy of riding gloveless for those in the know. The straight bar position is nice for climbing, even though I found myself on the hoods more often than not. The drops, however, are not my favorite as I found my hands tended to work their way down the steep slope without much of a bend to catch them at the bottom.
Gravel roads come in all shapes and sizes, and regular riders tend to talk about the types of gravel like folks in the far north talk about types of snow. On sandy roads the WTB Venture Road Plus tires handle surprisingly well, drifting and floating in a controlled sort of way. Loose gravel, like that shown above feels good too. The only gravel road conditions I encountered where the Haanjo felt undergunned were those with bigger rocks and boulders peeking out from below the surface. In these conditions, riders will want to slow things down and pick lines more carefully.
Overall I found the geometry and cockpit setup are comfortable for both short and long rides, and the ability to fit multiple water bottles on the frame is a plus. The 1×11 drivetrain (38T ring, 11-42T cassette) is pretty much all I need for riding gravel, though on the road it would be nice to have a few bigger gears.
My friends Craig and Pearl run a game called Wandrer.earth that has become an obsession of mine. The idea is to ride as many unique roads as you can within a given area over time, and see how you compare with others. I’ve been riding the Diamondback Haanjo 6C on regular Wandrer rides around the city and having a blast.
On the road the bike feels — at least to this mountain biker — like a road bike. It’s smooth, fast, and efficient and it doesn’t seem like the wide, knobby tires hold it back too much. The stopping power of the TRP disc brakes is most noticeable on the road where there’s little risk of skidding like on dirt or gravel.
I love hopping on the Haanjo for impromptu, hour-long rides after dinner, adding more roads to my list and just exploring to see what I can find in my neighborhood. More often than not there’s a mysterious path leading into the woods, or a gravel service road with a chain across it, begging to be explored. On the Haanjo I’m more than happy to oblige.
Who is the Diamondback Haanjo for?
I’m still not completely sure what, if any, component changes I would make if I owned a Haanjo, and fortunately (or unfortunately) the brand offers many different builds to choose from. Depending on the type of riding you plan to do, the gearing and tire choice deserve the most careful consideration.
Getting back to my bike review outline, I always like to consider who the ideal rider is for each bike I test. The Haanjo 6C certainly isn’t designed for racing gravel but it does seem like a good choice for almost anything else. As a mountain biker I could see myself making the Haanjo my everything-but-mountain-biking bike for riding both paved and gravel roads. Or, I might suggest one of the lower-cost Haanjo builds to friends who want a “hybrid” bike. I would even consider taking the Haanjo bikepacking for its generous frame mount options and bump-smoothing tires along with its comfortable cockpit and geometry.
Far from needless violence, the Haanjo delivers peace and love to all roads.
- Price: $2,550 as tested
- Available from Diamondback. The $925 Haanjo 2 is available at REI and Moosejaw, while Backcountry has the $1,600 Haanjo 4.
- Good vibration damping through frame and fork
- Wide tires handle washboard like a pro
- Nice spec and lightweight for the price
- Comfortable geometry and cockpit
Pros and cons of the Diamondback Haanjo 6C gravel bike.
- Gearing is limited when it comes to tarmac
- Sketchy high speed descender
Updated on June 2, 2022 with a note on dropper post compatibility.
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