New product season is in full swing with a number of brands trickling 2018 options into stores. 2018 looks set to be a big one for the mountain bike world, particularly for Giant, with a number of new additions and improvements to be found in the hugely capable off-road range.
For 2018, Giant has introduced a new cross country race weapon to the mountain bike range in the form of the Anthem Advanced Pro 29er and has made it Reign, overhauling its popular Enduro platform. The rest of the range sees a range of updated components and trickle down technology find it’s way down to enthusiast-level rides.
Colourways across the off-road range are more subdued for 2018, however, there’s still a generous helping of neon for those wanting to standout on the trail. Read on for all the highlights from Giant Australia's mountain bike range for 2018.
Related reading: Giant 2018 road bike performance range overview.
Returning to its short travel cross-country (XC) race bike roots, the Anthem Advanced Pro 29er has upped the ante across the board, all with the view of crossing the finish line first.
As its name suggests, wheel size has grown to 29in, a big step for Giant given they have long championed the 27.5in movement in the past. The Anthem Advanced Pro 29er 0 and 1 score a totally re-engineered frame, featuring an Advanced grade composite frame and rear triangle for reduced weight and a claimed increase in stiffness. The new frame is longer, lower and slacker than its 27.5in stable mate and weighs in at a claimed 1746g with a fully built size medium weighing in at 10.2 kg (weight courtesy of Colin Levitch of BikeRadar).
One other interesting change which reaffirms the race intentions is the move to a 27.2mm fixed seatpost (as opposed to the previous dropper) with Giant offering its Contact SLR seatpost on the Advanced Pro 0.
Trunnion mount metric shocks and Giant's Maestro suspension technology is found throughout the entire Anthem range. All 2018 Anthem models feature a lower leverage ratio allowing for lower shock pressures to be used.
Suspension travel has been reduced on the Advanced Pro 29er and refined to 100mm up front with 90mm in the rear. Front and rear suspension lockouts are now available via one lever for on the fly suspension changes.
Further down the range, the alloy framed Anthem 29er range is set to provide riders with a cracking race bike without the money no object price tag. Priced from $3,500, and featuring a host of impressive spec, it’s surely one to consider for the budget conscious.
Elsewhere in the Anthem family, both the 27.5in-wheeled Anthem Advanced (carbon) and Anthem (alloy) models get a fresh lick of paint and updated spec. These bikes continue to blur the lines between XC and trail bike with front suspension travel being bumped up across the range to 130mm.
Advanced Composite front and rear triangle, Fox Factory 32SC fork, Fox Factory Float EVOL rear shock, SRAM XX1 Eagle 1x12 drivetrain, SRAM Level Ultimate brakes, Giant XCR 0 Composite Tubeless 29in wheels and Giant Contact SLR 27.2 seat post.
Advanced Composite frame and rear triangle, Fox 32SC Performance Elite fork, Fox Float Performance EVOL rear shock, SRAM GX Eagle 1x12 drivetrain/brakes, Giant XCR 1 Composite Tubeless 29in wheels and Giant Contact SL seatpost.
Aluxx SL grade aluminium frame, Fox 32 SC Performance Elite fork, Fox Float Performance EVOL rear shock, SRAM GX Eagle 1x12 drivetrain/brakes, Giant XCR 1 Composite Tubeless 29in wheels and Giant Contact composite seatpost.
Aluxx SL frame, Fox float 32SC Performance fork, Fox Float Performance EVOL rear shock, Shimano SLX 1x11 drivetrain and Giant Contact 27.2 seatpost. A great spec for racers on a budget.
Advanced grade composite front triangle, alloy rear triangle, 27.5in wheels, RockShox Pike fork, RockShox Super Deluxe RCT rear shock and SRAM XO1 Eagle 1x12 drivetrain.
Advanced Composite front triangle, alloy rear triangle, 27.5in wheels, Fox Float 34 Performance Elite fork, Fox Float Performance Elite shock and SRAM GX Eagle 1x12 drivetrain.
Aluxx SL grade aluminium frame, 27.5in wheels, RockShox Pike fork, RockShox Deluxe shock, SRAM GX Eagle 1x12 drivetrain and Giant TRX 1 Composite DBL WheelSystem.
Aluxx SL grade aluminium frame, 27.5in wheels, Fox Float 34 Rhythm fork, Fox Float Performance shock, Shimano SLX 1x11 drivetrain, Giant XC1 tubeless wheelset.
Aluxx SL grade aluminium frame, 27.5in wheels, RockShox Gold fork, Shimano Deore 10sp drivetrain Giant XC1 tubeless wheelset.
The Reign has been totally re-engineered for 2018, with a range of tweaks and component changes to make Giant’s hugely popular enduro bike as aggressive, fast and fun as ever. The geometry has been tweaked with the toptube lengthened by 20mm to increase stability, while the headtube remains a slack 65 degrees. Suspension travel stays at 160mm at both ends. And as introduced to the Trance for 2017, the new Reign receives a trunnion mount metric rear shock, resulting in a lower leverage ratio which allows for a lower shock pressure.
Featuring a remote lockout, the RockShox Super Deluxe rear coil shock found on the Reign Advanced 0 is claimed to offer confidence inspiring control when descending and a lock out for enduro racers transitioning between stages, or riders wanting an easier time when climbing back up the trail to blast down another run.
Giant's carbon rims are out and alloy is in with the top spec Advanced models scoring DT Swiss hoops wrapped in aggressive Maxxis rubber.
Advanced composite frame, Aluxx SL rear triangle, RockShox Lyric fork, RockShox Super Deluxe Coil shock (with remote lockout), SRAM XO1 Eagle 1x12 drivetrain, SRAM Guide RSC brakes, DT Swiss EX1501 Spline One wheelset shod with Maxxis High Roller II (Rear) and Maxxis Shorty (front) rubber
Advanced composite frame, Aluxx SL rear triangle, Fox 36 Float Performance Elite fork, Fox Float DPX2 performance shock, SRAM GX Eagle 1x12 drivetrain, DT Swiss E1700 Spline Two wheelset.
Aluxx SL aluminium frame, RockShox Lyric fork, RockShox Super Deluxe RT shock, SRAM GX Eagle 1x12 drivetrain, DT Swiss E1700 Spline Two wheelset.
Aluxx SL aluminium frame, RockShox Yari fork, RockShox Deluxe shock, Shimano Deore 1x10 drivetrain, Giant PAM-2 tubeless wheelset.
The hugely popular trail-ready Trance range continues with little change in 2018 following a range of updates in 2017.
Like the Anthem, XTC and Reign, the Trance features Boost axle spacing, whilst a Trunnion Mount metric rear shock and forged composite rocker arm are featured throughout the range.
Suspension is business as usual with front travel remaining at 150mm, with the rear at 140mm. Headangle sits at 67-degrees. The Trance looks set to be a hit for trail riders with alloy models, as usual, offering impressive value for money.
Carbon composite front triangle, RockShox Pike RCT3 fork, SRAM X01 Eagle 1x12 drivetrain, SRAM Guide RSC brakes, Giant TRX 0 Composite Tubeless wheels, MRP chain guide and Maxxis High Roller II rubber.
Carbon composite front triangle, Fox 34 Performance Elite fork, Fox Float DPX2 rear shock, SRAM GX Eagle 1x12 drivetrain/brakes, Giant TRX 1 Composite Tubeless wheels and Giant Contact Switch S dropper post.
Alloy frame, Fox 34 Performance Elite fork, Fox Float DPX2 rear shock, SRAM GX Eagle 1x12 drivetrain/brakes, Giant TRX 1 Composite Tubeless wheels and Giant Contact SL dropper post.
Alloy frame, Fox 34 Rhythm fork, Fox Float Performance EVOL rear shock, Shimano SLX 1x11 drivetrain and Giant Contact Switch dropper post.
Alloy frame, Suntour Aion fork, RockShox Deluxe R rear shock, Shimano Deore 1x10 speed drivetrain and Giant XC1 tubeless wheelset.
The XTC Advanced 29er is again set to provide riders with a versatile ride, suited to many different riding disciplines thanks to its ability to switch between 27.5+ and 29in wheels (27.5 Plus tyres feature a similar external diameter to a 29er tyre, but pack a massive three inches of grippy tread and plush air volume). This versatility is a trend we’re seeing plenty of in the industry.
Adding even further versatility, the XTC Advanced platform features horizontal dropouts, making converting to a single track munching singlespeed a sinch.
For those wanting a little more trail fun, Giant is now offering the XTC Advanced+ 2, which comes equipped with trail ready 27.5+ wheels shod with 2.8” wide tyres, see below for more.
In range topping form, this model features an Advanced carbon frame, Fox Float 32 SC Factory fork, SRAM XX1 Eagle 1x12 drivetrain, SRAM Level Ultimate brakes and Giant XCR 0 Composite wheels.
Advanced carbon frame, RockShox SID RL fork, SRAM GX Eagle 1x12 drivetrain, SRAM Level TL brakes and Giant XCR 1 Composite wheels.
Advanced carbon frame, Fox Float 32 SC Performance fork and Shimano SLX 1x11 drivetrain/brakes.
Advanced carbon frame, RockShox Judy RL fork, Shimano SLX 1x11 drivetrain/brakes, Tranzx dropper seatpost and Giant GE35 27.5+ tubeless wheelset.
Advanced carbon frame, Suntour Radion LO-R fork and Shimano Deore 1x10 drivetrain.
Save for a fresh paint job and some specification tweaks, the downhill-focused Glory range continues without any major changes for 2018.
Carbon front triangle, 200mm travel, team-replica spec, RockShox BoXXer Team fork, RockShox Vivid R2C rear shock, SRAM X01 DH 7-speed drivetrain, SRAM Guide Ultimate brakes, MRP G4 Mini Carbon chain guide and DT Swiss rims/hubs.
Alloy frame, 200mm travel, RockShox BoXXer Team fork, RockShox Vivid R2C rear shock, SRAM GX DH 7-speed drivetrain, SRAM Guide R brakes, MRP G4 Mini Carbon chain guide and DT Swiss rims (Giant hubs).
Alloy frame, 200mm travel, Marzocchi Bomber 380RC fork, Fox Vanilla Performance rear shock, SRAM X5 9-speed drivetrain and MRP G3 Mini Alloy chain guide
The trail-friendly Giant Fathom 29 hardtail continues on with little change after its update last year. Featuring the stellar ALUXX SL aluminium frame, 69-degree head angle, 100mm travel suspension fork and 29in wheels, the Fathom range is sure to be a hit with XC (cross country) riders wanting a competent hardtail and bang for their buck. Australian dealers will be selling two Fathom 29er models. The frame remains unchanged from the 2017 Fathom 29er 2 we reviewed earlier in the year.
The Fathom 29er 1 looks to have plenty on offer for the aspiring mountain biker, including a 1x11 Shimano SLX drivetrain, Shimano hydraulic disc brakes and a Suntour Axon LO-RC fork.
The Fathom 29er 2 features a 2x9 Shimano Deore/Alivio drivetrain, Suntour Raidon XC LO-R, and Aussie-condition friendly 2.2in wide Maxxis Ikon tyres.
For those keen on a dual suspension bike at a similar price point to the Fathom, then check out the Stance 2. The 27.5in-wheeled bike features 120mm travel all around courtesy of a Suntour Axon RL-R fork and Suntour Epxion R shock. It uses a Shimano Deore 2x9 drivetrain and sits on 27.5in Giant XC2 tubeless wheels.
The Giant Talon continues to be a mainstay of the off-road range, proving to be a popular option for riders considering an entry-level hardtail. The Talon, available exclusively with 27.5in wheels and 100mm of suspension travel, will be available in two models in Australia, the Talon 2 and 3
Talon 2 – AU$999:
Talon 3 – AU$749:
There was plenty new to see in Giant's expansive range of parts, clothing and riding accessories. However, it was two new shoes that dominated interest this year.
First is the new downhill focussed 'Shuttle' mountain bike shoe. Using Giant's 'EXOBeam' outersole design, the shoe looks to feature an aggressive tread pattern, durable upper and a rubber bump cap on the toe of the shoe. The key talking point of the footwear is its moisture management properties with Giant claiming the shoe only gains 30g in weight when completely saturated. Expect these to sell for AU$169.
The 'Line' trail shoe is the other new addition to Giant’s off road shoe range which has been worn by Aussie Giant Factory rider Josh Carlsson throughout this year's Enduro World Series. The Line features Giant’s ExoBeam nylon outersole, the same aggressive tread pattern and bump cap found on the Shuttle, yet features a lower cut cuff with a combination ratchet/velcro closure system on the upper. RRP for the Line is AU$189
For more information, or to get hands on the new range, visit your local Giant dealer.
With the 2018 range so near, why not find yourself a bargain on a previous year Giant mountain bike? The BikeExchange marketplace has a number of amazing deals on previous year Giant Mountain Bikes available from leading retailers across the country.