Designed to achieve uncompromising performance for riders who like to pedal alpine ridges one day and rally the bike park the next, the Hightower Carbon C R Mountain Bike likes to do it all. To us, its descending ability is more capable than its 145mm of rear travel might suggest, yet thanks to an updated leverage curve the VPP suspension design feels better than ever on the climbs too. The slackened 64. 5-degree head tube angle (low position, 150mm fork) delivers unwavering stability whether we’re navigating desert chunk or manicured flow trails in the forest. The steep 76. 4-degree seat tube angle (low position, size large) gives us ideal pedal positioning for long spins in demanding terrain. There’s no question about our favorite feature on the third-generation Hightower though–the Glovebox integrated frame storage lets us stow the included Tool Wallet and Tube Purse right in our bike, along with an extra layer or snack. This entry-level build offers excellent value, starting with the Carbon C layup from Santa Cruz which we’ve found to be exceptionally durable, although slightly heavier than its Carbon CC counterpart. Additional workhorse components include the NX Eagle 12-speed groupset from SRAM that delivers dependable shifting and minimal fuss, while the 150mm travel RockShox Lyrik Base fork inspires confidence while we send it. The Race Face AR Offset 30 wheels are among our favorite entry-level wheelsets because they are impressively durable for the price. *Due to unprecedented demand in the global supply chain and the bike industry over the last 18 months, material weight and exact components are subject to change. We are working diligently to keep tech specs updated, and any adjustments will be minor. If you have any questions, reach out to a Gearhead by chatting online or calling 1-888-276-7130.