Santa Cruz Highball AL Revealed

29er Cross Country

Highball Aluminum Hardtail Introduction by Francis Cebedo

There is no doubt the  Highball Carbon is cool.  At 2.5 lbs, it delivers a fast yet comfortable ride.  It is low to the ground and it handles like a champ. But the frame alone costs $1900 and it is not singlespeed friendly. Well Santa Cruz has answered the call with the Highball AL. It weighs 3.9 lbs for a medium frame but will only cost $650. It’s a lot lighter on the wallet and it will be offered with optional singlespeed dropouts that will allow you to tension the chain. Complete bikes start at $1,499 (D/XC kit) and $2,099 (R/XC)

The Mtbr smart money says that’s a lot of savings for a little extra weight.  Throw away the gears and put some carbon wheels and call it a day.

From Mike Ferrentino

Yes indeedy, the skinny carbon fiber killing machine has now been joined by a new ALUMINUM brother (and therefore will now be known as the Highball C). Taking the swift and light intent of our 29″ wheeled carbon Highball and crafting it out of aluminum, we’ve added a couple very notable other features: value and versatility. The proprietary aluminum tubing allows for a strong, respectably light frame, and features the same responsive geometry as our carbon race bike. Riders have the option of running a fixed position rear dropout for geared use, or a pivoting, adjustable dropout for single speed use. Clean lines and super-versatility aside, this is also one of our most affordable bikes, redefining the notion of “bang for your buck.” Check out these features:

S, M, L, XL sizes (note that the 22.2″ top tube length and 28.3 standover on our small is shorter and lower than that claimed on some other “extra-small” bikes)

  • Fixed or swinger SS dropouts
  • Tapered headtube
  • Hydroformed top- and downtubes
  • Asymmetrical forged chainstay yoke (for optimal strength, stiffness, and chainring clearance)
  • Brake strut on non-driveside for vibration-free braking
  • Two bottle mounts
  • Threaded bb shell (we think this is still the best, most user-friendly, widely compatible, globally serviceable way to install a bottom bracket.)

Available complete starting at $1499 (D/XC kit)

Available in:

Pearl white/green

Traffic blue/orange

Related Video: Santa Cruz Bikes Tallboy Al and HighBall 29ers

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About the author: Francis Cebedo

The founder of mtbr and roadbikereview, Francis Cebedo believes that every cyclist has a lot to teach and a lot to learn. "Our websites are communal hubs for sharing cycling experiences, trading adventure stories, and passing along product information and opinions." Francis' favorite bike is the last bike he rode, whether it's a dirt jumper, singlespeed, trail bike, lugged commuter or ultralight carbon road steed. Indeed, Francis loves cycling in all its forms and is happiest when infecting others with that same passion. Francis also believes that IPA will save America.


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  • Matt Horutz says:

    The Traffic blue/orange version reminds me of the Screaming Hand logo color scheme. Nice job!

  • Scott says:

    Where’s the SS dropout? No pic’s here or the SC site. Still in the works?

  • razzle says:

    good luck trying to get just a frame.
    im in the the UK and have had a blue large frame on order for a month. ive now been told its gonna be another month, at least.
    2 months for a frame!! c’mon santa cruz, sort it out!!

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