Video: Creating and Racing the GT LTS - 'Full Travel' Ep.2

May 7, 2020
by Ed Spratt  

bigquotesChapter 2: GT leaps forward as the industry catches up


After the huge success of the RTS, the rest of the bike industry was left frantically trying to catch up... but GT was already two steps ahead. Using feedback from highly talented GT Factory Racing athletes like Nico Vouilloz and Mike King for R&D, Jim Busby and the engineers continued to push the boundaries of what suspension could do with the introduction of the LTS.
GT Bicycles


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30 Comments

  • 16 0
 I remember that bike fondly as well. I made the mistake of putting ZZYZX dual crown fork on mine, with 9mm dropouts Smile . That was a mistake on so many levels.. ha. Anyways, broke the head tube clean off. I also was fortunate enough to race the bike in the video image above, a GT Lobos with a pull shock, and a thermoplastic skeleton woven through alloy lugs. Mine stayed tight and was awesome the entire time. GT sure made cool stuff back then.
  • 6 0
 Man we had those Zyzzx forks for sale in the shops, I could never wrap my head around how light they were for how “burly” they looked. I’m pretty sure the original orange Marz Z1 single crown fork weighed more!!

Then I started hearing stories like yours...
  • 3 0
 @Honda750: I had an LTS as well, with a Rockshox DHO (Down Hill ONLY!). I swapped it out for a ZZYZY and rolled out of my shop, then off of the loading dock and it broke! Such a piece of shit! I put the DHO back on then eventually a Z1. the LTS with the Z1 was a great riding bike.
  • 10 0
 Are you even a 90s kid if you did dream of owning a GT thermoplastic?
  • 6 0
 @hamncheez: Oh man! I dreamed of owning an STS for so long.
  • 5 0
 Man those bikes were so advanced
Trunnion shocks that allowed you to raise or lower the BB/affect HT angle, flip chip to change shock leverage and rocker linkage- all the bells and whistles that are on todays bikes
  • 2 0
 We had Gt- Lts and Lobos, in the shop for sale when I started as an apprentice mechanic, back in the day. They seemed like crazy over kill at the time in Ontario Canada everyone I knew was still hardtail weight conscious xc riders. I moved to Whistler in 98-99 quickly realized that my 24.5lbs hardtail was the wrong tool for the job!! My first dual suspension bike was a GT I drive one of the first production bikes sold with QR20mm Marzocchi fork, what a leap ahead in bike tech that was!
  • 2 0
 There is a new old stock sts lobo sitting in a bike shop near me. Looks so outdated now now compared to modern ways. I think the owner keeps it as a memento but i'm sure there are people out there might want their hands on it.
  • 1 0
 Remember seeing pictures of LTS & really wanted one, then started racing DH & seeing Steve Peat & Dave Wadell riding one just made it worse, so did get one & even though was good not that good, tended to lock out suspension while braking
But looked good, just not ride as good as looked?
Still have one that never got round to building up, now retro is not functional just fashion
  • 1 0
 My first proper mountain bike was an Aluminium LTS! Nice bike but it blew the rear shock (rock shox super deluxe) doing a 4 in drop as soon as I leave the shop. The dealer replaced the shock and I blew it again. After that my father machined a sleeve to reinforce the shock body and never happened again. The other problem were the teflon bushing at the pivots. They wore like butter making the rear super flexy.
  • 1 0
 Once again, when you look at nowadays mtb`s, moto-cross in term of geometry and features was the best inspiration they could have taken at these times, but they were stuck to a basic bicycle frame trying to adapt awkward fancy stuffs around it.... whereas a modern gravity bike is now more or less a lightened MX with a cranket and pedals...
My BMX in the 90`s was a PK Ripper and it was a ``regular`` simple bicycle; I also liked MX so much but when I looked at what MTB was at this period, I just thought it wasn`t the right time to get any. Now mountain bikes are worth knowing them Smile
  • 2 1
 What's up with the editing in the video where they lay a picture of a Horst Link bike over voiceover talking about designed that were crap and a picture of a Trek Y bike over voiceover talking about designs that worked?

Also, I'm all for nostalgia but are we really pretending that the GT LTS was a good bike?
  • 2 0
 My first proper MTB was a 1999 LTS 2000. Loved that bike, had so many great memories on it. Coil shock, z1 fork, XT components.
  • 1 1
 I owned a GT LTS. Bought new, from a shop. It was absolute crap, even by the standards of the time. Whoever remembers them as a 'classic' probably never tried racing one. It did at least teach me to try things properly before I buy. The next bike I bought was a 2nd hand Orange Patriot, which was leagues better.
  • 2 0
 I am happy to see GT being alot more in the mix these days. Really smart sign with Brage Vestavik, he's blowing up right now for all the right reasons.
  • 1 0
 Impressive that GT has had basically four designs over the last 30 years. RTS was ahead of its time, and should be reincarnated. High pivot, rocker activated suspension is in right now.
  • 2 0
 My first susser bike was a LTS with Johnny T maguras..thought I was the bees knees
  • 1 0
 Oh yeah, that sun faded yellow.
  • 1 0
 Had two LTS frames, LTS-DH with the Titanium link which snapped at that link junction on the seat tube and a LTS-1. Such a fun entryway into full suspension bikes.
  • 2 0
 Had a DHI, loved that bike, too bad it broke in a matter of 6 months and there was no dealer to have a warranty!
  • 2 0
 Yep every one we sold broke in Whistler. They started pushing back on their warranty, but pretty much everything broke back then.
  • 3 0
 Horst link, still on new bikes.
  • 2 1
 I had the LTS thermoplastic. Raced it once, realised how bad it was and bought Intense after that.
  • 2 1
 Yes did look nice, but not really a race bike compared to Intense!
What I do not understand, is GT claiming all this racing heritage, then not even the same company now, just branding?
  • 2 1
 @aljoburr: id keep quiet about that part to be honest, they were crap bikes in my opinion and say that as an owner. The Orange was streets ahead.
  • 1 1
 @thebaron38: Yes good thing about older Orange frames can adjust frame too fit bigger wheels 224 evo will even fit a tapered fork by taking the steerer sleeve out!
  • 1 0
 I also remember how flexy those “carbon” LTS bike tubes were you could flex the downtube with your hand strength.
  • 2 0
 Loved my GT LTS 5000... my first proper bike!
  • 2 2
 I hate GT for selling that crap to the public I broke it often and got hurt badly once.
  • 1 1
 broke *them

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