6 (Fun!) Carbon Fat Bikes for 2015
Take one for a test ride and you’ll realize the only people who don’t want a fat bike are people who hate fun (why do you hate fun?). And if you’re going to go there … why not go all the way? Here are a half-dozen carbon fiber fat rigs that offer the perfect all-season combination of: light + strong + FAT.
Tipping the scales at an ultra-svelte 21-ish pounds, the Yampa XX1 claims to be the the lightest/fastest fat bike on the market. Built by Colorado Springs-based Borealis and outfitted with a carbon fork, carbon rims, 190-mm hubs, 4.8″ tires and 3 bottle cage mounts, this is race-nimble all-weather ninja bike ($5,549).
The Borealis Echo is the first carbon hard tail specifically designed around the new 100-mm RockShox Bluto fat fork (there are advantages to being located only 3 miles from SRAM HQ). Equipped with ultra-wide 5″ tires, it also features slick design details like internal cable routing for the seat post dropper ($3,999-$5,999).
Salsa’s Beargrease XX1 is the Corvette of carbon fat bikes. Designed specifically for racing, the Beargrease XX1 is a top-of-the-line no compromise speed machine. The 2015 model comes with ultra-light 70-mm-wide Whiskey No. 9 Carbon rims with 3.8″ tires, a SRAM XX 1×11 drivetrain, and X0 brakes ($5599).
In a world where carbon fat bikes cost close to (or more than) $5K, the Carbon Alaskan from Framed Bikes is notable as the most affordable entrant in the category. It may not be the lightest carbon bike on the market, but the Minnesota bike maker builds them tough. The Alaskan also comes with 80-mm rims for easy swapping between 4” and 4.7” tires ($2000).
The Shaman is the Russian-built cruise missile of fat bikes. It features Sarma’s ultra-light/strong all-carbon NARAN rims, stealth internal cable routing, and 170-mm through-axles with compact chain stays that give it the acceleration and feel of a 29er that was designed for attacking the Siberian outback ($4250).
The Iditarod-winning Corvus, built by Anchorage-based Fatback Bikes, features 4 integrated rack mounts and 12-mm through axels that are compatible with Fatback’s 197-mm hub. Available only as a frameset, it also offers 4.8” tire clearance, three water bottle mounts and a removable derailleur hanger ($2400).
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