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Bicycle Review: Felt RXC Team

By MBT Staff

XC Racers rejoice. If you've got the dough, the RXC's got the go.

Whether weíre talking powersports, automobile, or bicycles, a factory produced race-ready model isnít going to come cheap. Racing demands the bleeding edge of engineering and leaves very little room for compromise. Racers endlessly seek the edge over the competition and Felt is clearly in tune with this concept as indicated by their $5000 RXC Team.

Whatís it for?

Cross Country racing, plain and simple. Could the bike be used for any other applications? Perhaps extremely light trail duty or gravel coated secondary road touring, but a more realistic answer is no.

How much does it weigh?

21 pounds, complete. No, that is not a typo; the complete RXC Team doesnít weigh much more than some beefed up frames do alone.

How is this possible?

For starters the frame material is a blend of Scandium alloy and carbon fiber- A combination chosen for its uncanny durability and light weight attributes. The frame tubes are custom made by Easton for each and every Felt individually, racers seeking individuality will certainly find plenty to get excited about here.

Letís talk specs?

Offering the only available squish for the RXC Team is the Fox F80X fork (automatic lock out). Shimano XTR front and rear deraileurs, crank, V-brakes, levers, and Rapid Fire shifters also grace the Felt. Completing the package is Mavic Crossmax wheels wrapped in Hutchinson 2.1 tubeless rubber, and carbon fiber wrapped aluminum bar, stem, and seat post.

How does it ride?

There are two terms to describe the ride of the Felt RXC Team: Airy and bumpy. The combination of lightweight material and solid chassis layout results in an incredibly responsive pedaling platform: This is a bike that reminds the pilot of its racing heritage with every spin of the crank. It does not simply get up and go, it gets up and is gone. However, as a result of all of the incredible weight shaving efforts, creature comforts are extremely bare. The Fox F80X handles more than its fair share of bump absorption but like all good things, comes to an end too quickly. Once the F80ís forgiveness is vanquished, prepare for the jarring reality that this is hardtail country. To master flowing on the Felt, a rider is best to prepare for terrain imperfection with a lose grip and a standing attack position.

What do we really think?

For a serious cross country racer, this bike represents an opportunity to experience true factory level race equipment right from the showroom. Just about everyone else need not apply; linear pull (v) brakes were clearly speced due to their weight shaving qualities, but simply come up short when compared to the smooth modulation and grippy power of modern discs (hydraulic especially). To worsen the situation, upgrading to a disc system isnít possible. Racers will adore the light weight frame, snappy power delivery, and exotic material selection. Deducting points for the discomfort found anywhere but the racetrack would be missing the whole point of the Felt RXC Team so we will refrain from doing so. Besides, if racing isnít on your agenda, then the target demographic Felt is aiming for with the RXC Team does not include you anyway.

For more information head over to http://www.feltracing.com