First Look: Yeti SB4.5C - Eurobike 2015

Aug 26, 2015
by Mike Levy  
Eurobike 2015

Yeti is expanding their range of Switch Infinity equipped bikes with the addition of the SB4.5C, a new 4.5" travel do-everything machine that's designed around 29" wheels. The fresh bike features what Yeti calls "trail-specific geometry'' - a long front end that's combined with a low bottom bracket and a relatively slack head angle - that should add up to fun machine in a lot of situations. We've spent plenty of time on Yeti's other 5" and 6" travel Switch Infinity bikes, all of which pedal like demons, so all signs point towards the shorter travel SB4.5C being able to launch like a Top Fuel drag car while being as efficient as a Prius. The new Yeti also costs nearly as much as a well used Prius, with prices starting at $5,599 USD for the SRAM GX spec'd model and going up to $10,049 USD for the no holds barred XTR and ENVE dream machine. The frame with a FOX Float DPS shock retails for $3,400 USD.


SB4.5C Details

• Intended use: mountain biking
• Rear wheel travel: 4.5'' / 114mm
• Wheel size: 29''
• New carbon fiber frame
• Switch Infinity suspension
• FOX Float DPS shock
• PF92 bottom bracket
• New internal cable routing
• Boost 148mm axle spacing
• Frame weight: 5.4lb (claimed)
• Available mid-September
• MSRP: $5,599 - $10,049 USD

Eurobike 2015

The SB4.5C frame is an all-new design for Yeti that's built around 29" wheels, and the Colorado company has tuned the bike's 114mm travel Switch Infinity suspension for a sporty feel: “The goal with the SB4.5C was to build a trail-specific bike with the firm pedalling platform and supple bump absorption that our Switch Infinity design is known for,'' explained Chris Conroy, Yeti President. ''Based on feedback from racers on our team like Jared Graves and Richie Rude as well as a range of local riders and dealers who’ve ridden it, the SB4.5C is exactly the bike we were trying make.'' Conroy also said that testers have been riding prototypes for over a year now, and we'd guess the bike's similar lines to its longer travel brothers made it easy to slip the SB4.5C under the radar.

The frame also sports 12 x 148mm Boost rear end, compatibility with Shimano's new E-THRU axle and a wider bottom bracket stance, and custom molded rubber guards on the underside of the down tube and on both the drive-side seat and chain stays. One thing that goes almost unnoticed is the bike's cable routing due to Yeti doing an impressive job of routing the lines inside of the down tube before they exit just ahead of the Switch Infinity unit and head back into the swing arm. This makes for one hell of a clean looking bike.

The $6,899 USD X01 model will begin shipping in mid-September, with other models following shortly after.


MENTIONS: @yeticycles




140 Comments

  • + 179
 Finding out that this bike uses a boost rear end is like finding out that your favourite supermodel puts the milk in before the cereal.
  • + 36
 And a PF bottom bracket...
  • + 74
 Dear Boost & PF: thank you so much for blue-balling me everytime I see a hot and sexy bike. Bastards.
  • + 22
 It's going that way whether you like it or not, so just deal.
  • - 14
flag MTBCAM (Aug 26, 2015 at 13:59) (Below Threshold)
 Just like 26" is going away? Dont think so
  • + 18
 all the major players are moving to the 12x148 boost .... no real point in complaining... 2016, the year of the ever evolving hub standard.
  • + 1
 Youre right, good thing I have my AM/Trail bike set for the next 5-6 years. My DH on the other hand...
  • + 25
 What the f*ck is a Shimano E-THRU axle?! I feel like they slipped in a quiet announcement of another stupid standard that won't be compatible with anything.
  • + 4
 Out of the 12mm E-thru axle user manual: "The Rear E-Thru 12 mm can be used in combination with a special frame
and a special hub/wheel. If it is used in combination with any other frame
or hub/wheel, it may cause the wheel to become detached from the bicycle
while you are riding and result in serious bodily injury."

Sounds like its just for the boost compatibility
  • + 3
 Can someone clarify this for me? Compared to a normal 142x12, Boost is a wider axle and and wider hub flanges.
If you were willing to forego the wider flanges shouldn't it be possible to update a Hope 142x12 to fit a Boost bike?
  • + 15
 I don't know... Is Boost REALLY that big of a problem? Gains this marginal might not be a selling point, per se, but it's here to stay now, and there are no compatibility issues if you buy complete. I get the rationale behind swapping components from one frame to the next, but I mean, I run 26" QRs; my next bike will HAVE to be complete, and that happens to all of us at some point no matter how hard we hold on. It sucks in the short term but obsolescence is natural; if backwards compatibility didn't end somewhere we'd all be riding fixed gear singlespeeds.

In any case, I'm reserving judgement until I see it in turq. If I wanted murder I'd buy an Evil.
  • + 10
 Instead of making millions of hubs outdated, they could have made asymmetric rims that "BOOST" the nipple hole between the flanges for the stronger wheel. Bike industry is f*cked up and retarded.

#AsymmetricRimsAreBetterThanBoost
  • + 1
 I agree with ^, manufacturers have given and are starting to give everyone the shaft now with regards to the new standard. The decision should have been made long ago that this should be offered as an after-market, retrofitable option - as opposed to this being a matter of opposing standards between new bikes and basically every other wheel out there (ignoring the 135/150mm difference cause people have their heads around that anyway).

Too long didn't read: screw boost, I'd rather go without the marginal increase in stiffness and not have a race weekend go to sh*t because no one has a spare wheel with the new standard.
  • + 6
 The people that complain about boost on $5,000 - 10,000 bikes are missing something. The bike costs $5,000 - $10,000. That is where your real money problems are. In which case, you probably aught to step back from the situation. If you are a person who is able to drop $5,000 - $10,000, then you are already trying to pay thousands more for incremental weight, geometry and performance upgrades over a $1,500 "budget" bike. So complaining about these upgrades is rather stupid. Boost clearly has an advantage. I don't know about threadless bb's though... seems like it actually makes strength worse, makes home servicing less manageable than threaded and it doesn't seem to be any cheaper for manufacture.
  • + 10
 boost + pf? go home yeti, you're drunk.
  • - 10
flag SlodownU (Aug 26, 2015 at 17:27) (Below Threshold)
 This bike is boring. The Knolly Warden is not, and makes this look plain dumb with its pressfit bb and boost.
  • + 11
 Cool story bro. Try riding an SB5 or SB6 down your favourite trail. You'll sell all your bikes to buy the new Yetis...

Knolly Warden is boring. Bunch of ugly links on links on links. Looks plain dumb

Opinions are like a*sholes, @SlodownU, everybody has one. But yes, PF and Boost really needs to go away or make a proper mark. Because at this rate, we will see another ULTIMATE rear hub size in a few months.
  • + 3
 VTwintips, even if people can afford $7-11k bikes, it doesn't mean we want to constantly pay that much when it shouldn't cost that much.. It's a chain reaction of effects when you start getting rid of all the unnecessary sizes and extra tooling and machines and materials. If we didn't have such knuckle heads in every company trying to do something "cool" and "innovative" when it's all just garbage, then we could all be riding new Yeti bikes without paying $5k for a base model.

But sure, if you condone new front and rear hub sizes, headset sizes, bb interfaces, tire and rim widths, and new cassette driver versions every few years for negligible benefits, GO AHEAD and support a stupid way of engineering
  • + 5
 No because it throws off the rotor alignment. Therefore you need new hubs to cooperate with a boost frame.
  • - 23
flag SlodownU (Aug 26, 2015 at 18:23) (Below Threshold)
 You Yeti fanboys are ghey. I rode a 5c, and sorry, I don't get the hype. The aluminum Warden was better, the Mojo HD3 was better, the Intense 275 was better, the Burner was better . There are better bikes, IMHO.
  • + 6
 If you're paying 10,050 for this bike, you don't give a duck whats in the rear.
  • + 10
 @SlodownU

Still with the "gay?"
  • + 2
 I guess I can accept the Boost crap; it doesn't make a bike any worse off. But I certainly will NOT accept any press fit BB crap. Nothing but a bunch of soft dung there.
  • + 3
 Love my Following
  • + 6
 Lol.. as if models eat.
  • + 5
 The flanges are wider which puts the disk further out as well, not compatible with 142. Yes the wheel is stronger, but its really about short chainstays, stiff swingarms and fd clearance all in one. Many of us at 1x for life but most companies are afraid to make 1x only designs. This allows for everything to work together and have room for big tires.
  • + 3
 @theminsta I agree that ASYM rims are better than Boost 148, and it allows the wheelbuilder to use the same spoke length for both sides and allows for more even spoke tensions.
Luckily WTB has been paying attention, and is making asymmetrical rims: www.wtb.com/products/asym Smile
  • + 61
 "Intended use: mountain biking " Smile
  • + 2
 Gotta love that, no frills, back to basics.. Surprised it doesn't say Intended use : Riding.. Ofcourse!
  • + 1
 just like Marzocchi sticker label.
  • + 3
 About time some one made a bike just for mountain biking.
  • - 4
flag WAKIdesigns (Aug 26, 2015 at 23:42) (Below Threshold)
 it's just a statement. Nobldy says you cannot use it for Enduro
  • + 41
 yeti makes works of art. just like art, its something i can't afford
  • + 4
 Same bro need to sell a few organs
  • - 6
flag aoneal (Aug 26, 2015 at 14:01) (Below Threshold)
 ...and just like art, it is fragile and best appreciated at a safe distance.
  • + 6
 Pretty sure I could damage plenty of stuff with a bronze sculpture..
  • + 18
 I'm here for the boost 148 hate.
  • + 12
 I think Yeti have got it right with this bike. I've just bought a new bike and in the process I rode about 20 different trail-focused bikes (from 160mm to 100mm) in different circumstances, including the SB5C. I think, if we're honest, this bike is going to fit a huge percentage of the actual trails and rider's capabilities out there. For a place where there's rocky/rooty trails that you need to ride up and down this thing's going to be perfect. Sure, we all think our mad skillz justify having the latest 160mm enduro weapon, but for most people that's just delusion.

Out of all the bikes I rode my favourites were:
- SB5C, it was good on the downs and it was the best climber due to having so much traction - I put the traction down to the Switch Infinity system
- the 2016 Stumpjumper 29er - just so generally capable - it opened my eyes to how good a 29er could be

If I had to pick a perfect bike, it would have been a 29er SB5C. Even though it's got a bit less travel, the SB4.5C is it.
  • - 3
 Have you tried Knolly Warden or any Knolly? I am set on new Knolly but Yeti is bothering me as well. I am not Enduro, Enduro. I like trail more 140-150mm max. I can go off trail form time to time but I like my bones to be intact. So I am looking toward new trail/enduro bike now preferably 27.5 as I have 140mm 29er now. I liek 29ers but i tested 27.5 and they feel good too. Probably my ideal bike would be 27.5+ but I need to wait one more year to see what comes next. SO going back to my question. Yeti or Knolly?
  • + 1
 OR new Evil 29er or 27.5 Smile
  • + 1
 Sorry. I didn't test an Evil or Knolly. They would have been good to try. Mostly, I tried the more mainstream brands that are regularly available to demo. The Yeti would be good to try if you can get a chance. It might have been just well set up, but I reckon it had the best traction of anything I tried. Having said that, my lasting takeaway from all the bikes was that they are all good, and I'd be happy to have any of them....maybe except the Trek Slash. Your description of your riding probably fits me as well, so I'm sure you'd be happy on the Warden....I've heard great things.
For reference, in the last 6 months I've tried: Trek (Remedy 29, Remedy 27.5, Fuel 29, Slash), Yeti (SB6C, SB5C), Santa Cruz (Bronson C, Bronson Al, 5010C), Ibis Mojo HD3, Specialized (2016 Stumpjumper Expert 29, Enduro Comp 29), Giant (Anthem Advanced SX, Trance Advanced 1, Trance 1, Reign 2).....and a Scott Gambler in the wet at MSA (trying not to die).
  • + 7
 I am loving the new SB4.5 but Boost is still bothering me.
1) why do we need stiffer frames? We aren't roadies looking to have maximum pedal-power transfer.
2) stronger wheels can be built with asymmetrically drilled rims. Why should we suddenly and forcibly make millions of bicycle parts obsolete WHEN WE DON'T HAVE TO?
3) Will it really stop at just "BOOST"? Where did this retarded mentality of just scrapping everything we've had come from? No doubt that sometimes we need to start on a fresh slate, but it really feels like the bike industry is too quick to press that "new size and standard" button all too often.

We live in an era where we still have 10 speeds on DOWNHILL BIKES, countless "standards" for every hole and plug...... Come on bike industry, Specialized, Fox, Rockshox, Giant, Norco, Shimano, Sram... come together and have a Bilderberg meeting and FIGURE THIS SHIT OUT. How much longer will we have to waste time and effort into creating more complexity in FREAKING BICYCLES.

We don't need 20 different headset sizes when we basically only have tapered forks these days. Nobody does
  • + 5
 Waiting for SB4.725C with something newer than that old BOOST business... can't some one come up with a better axle standard/hub spacing today that can be obsolete next week? Like come one... 148 is like soooo last week....
  • + 4
 Enduro press fit BB that threads the inner sleeve together works pretty flawlessly for me, the boost is a noticeable difference in my opinion as soon as I hit the trail, only way I'd pick up another 29er. Compared my old SB95c its a whole different bike, rear triangle being 1x specific is beefed up where the F. der. mount was and adds to the stiffness. Yeah bikes!!!!
  • + 3
 Sounds like boost haters that haven't even tried it. I have a boost front and rear bike. I can't believe how different it feels from the bike I had before it. I've even ridden it back to back with a 27.5 version of the same bike. You can keep the 27.5. A boost 29er has the same stay length wheel stiffness and spoke angle as its 27.5 counter part. It's the first "New" standard I've actually been able to get on board with. Maybe you guys should try something before you hate it. Nothing progresses as fast as bikes are right now. Embrace it.
  • + 3
 Why it is so difficult to make a modern 130 mm 29er with short chainstays, long tt / reach and slack headangle!??

Let's say that I buy this 115 mm bike and then invite few friends for a ride.
Should I say them to take their xc rigs or 150 / 160 mm am bikes??
  • + 3
 XC rigs for sure. Climbs are just climbs; bring the fight where it really hurts.
  • + 16
 Depends where you're going surely? Also... Why are you deciding what your friends ride? Do you dress them too?
  • + 4
 We'll need to see the geometry to really know for sure. I'm thinking this bike will be more in line with AM bikes than XC. Yeti already has the ASR-C (102mm XC 29er) which recently got a revamp. It makes sense that this new 29er be a burlier more AM style bike. 114mm travel on a slack 29er should be plenty of travel.
  • + 4
 Like the Evil Following,it's a 29" trail bike.
If I had to choose between one or another,it wouldn't be easy.
But I'm not a millionare,so no problem.
  • + 1
 Kona Process 111 anyone??? Hell of a good value as well. Could get a very very capable complete for the price of this frame. If I could add another bike to the stable, I do believe the Process 111 would be my trailbike of choice at the moment.
  • + 1
 More travel on my 29er please.
  • + 4
 It might be difficult, but Canfield has pushed the envelope past anything else out there with the Riot. 29 inch wheels,140mm travel, 414mm chainstays, slack head angle, proper seat angle for climbing, threaded BB, unlimited shock options,142x12 rear, etc etc etc. You should check it out. After the poor quality control on the 2 SB95c's I owned, I can't consider a Yeti anytime soon. Especially at the premium price they charge.
  • + 3
 Nice. I haven't thought about Canfield for years. That bike looks good and their website stokes me about their company. I think I will be in the niche group of guys that wants big, plush bikes with big wheels. 29ers. . . .faster for XC, and everywhere else.
  • + 1
 @pakleni Specialized build the bike you need: Stumpjumper
135 mm rear and 140 mm front travel
& no boost LOL
  • + 3
 For just a frame costing $3400 or for the base model starting at $5599, I think I'll put my money else where...... Especially after seeing Boost and PressFit! I'm liking that new Evil The Following a lot !!!!!!
  • + 4
 Boo on the boost... still not sure if I understand why it's needed.
Any geo numbers? If it has the right numbers it could be a good competitor for the following...
  • + 3
 The folks at Ibis, who are offering buyers the choice between Boost and 142, say it's a 15% stiffness gain, compared to a 200-300% stiffness gain in going to carbon wheels. For that I'd say it isn't worth it. If a manufacturer like Yeti comes forward and says it let them get the chainstays shorter, it gets a little more reasonable, but overall, I call bs on Boost.
  • + 20
 BOOST = Bunch Of Obvious Sale Tactics
  • + 14
 Its needed, because no one makes money if you can re-use that sick set of hubs you bought last year.
  • + 3
 ^very clever.
  • + 1
 Instead of making millions of hubs outdated, they could have made asymmetric rims that "BOOST" the nipple hole between the flanges for the stronger wheel. Bike industry is f*cked up and retarded.

#AsymmetricRimsAreBetterThanBoost
  • + 2
 So, if the Switch Infinity is supposedly better than the old Switch on the SB95, why reduce the travel? Going sub 120mm/5" on a trail bike is missing the point for most rider's needs. And you will go faster on a bike like this, thus pushing the limits.

And before you all start: suspension quality obviously trumps the amount of travel, but you can't get around having the right amount from the start.
  • + 6
 You haven't rode a new switch bike apparently. You ask why? Because 114mm of travel with this bike will pedal like a 100mm travel bike, and descend like a 140mm.
  • + 1
 You hear that all the time, has this much travel but rides like it has this much. . . .This bike should have come with more travel. More is better, and the super advanced suspension and shock should be able to smooth it out. . . .I am an advocate for 6" 29ers.
  • + 2
 PF isnt that bad.. i mean its bad, annoying, pain in the ass, cheaply made. But other then that its still on every dream bike! all jokes aside. I have a PF/bb92/bb86/pfgxp/shimano Pf and in some cases its better then having a over tighten threaded bb. just tap the PF B*tch out and press in a new one.
  • + 3
 First time I saw the bike I got excited thinking this was a 26" wheel slalom/4X machine. Then I land back in reality and saw 29 in the description. Frown
Still sexy even though its a 29er.
  • + 3
 No FD mount. I called up Yeti, asking if it were maybe like on the SB6c, just well hidden, but they confirmed that it's 1x only.
  • + 1
 I own an SB95 and it is a very good bike. But I think you missed the mark this time, Yeti. Unless I am going back to XC racing, I don't want a 4.5" travel bike. I want more. Like 6". As a devoted fan of the long-travel 29er, it's looking like Specialized will be serving me up my next ride.
  • + 3
 for the first time I absolute don't care about boost. I want this bike more than I want world peace ( or some important crap like that).
  • + 1
 You guys are missing the point. Boost offers a real gain in stiffness, but perhaps more importantly it requires you to buy a new wheel (or at least a new rear hub), so you can't just buy a frameset and swap over your old parts. Isn't buying new stuff the whole point? #sarcasm

Next, we need to switch to 40mm (1.575 inch) tapered steering tubes for added stiffness. And bigger diameter rotor and brake mounting bolts. Etc.
  • + 1
 Yeti has one of the most original frame designs. I love that curvy, pipline look of their frames. Awesome color! Not too bright and flashy. But I don't know why Enve parts are so friggin expensive. They are not the lightest, but definitely one of the costliest! BTW, 2014 was the year EVERY bike manufacturers jumped one bandwagon of internal cabling. Why didn't they do this earlier! Bikes are now so much more cleaner looking ever since! Bravo!
  • + 2
 Cleaner yes, but internal brake hose and dropper post routing sucks. id rather have ease of repair than a clean looking bike.
  • + 3
 Finally some internal cable routing.!! Clean n smooth
  • + 3
 very clever Yeti, disguising a 650b+ as a 29'er
  • + 0
 Not sure i like it to much, a Reverb would look cool on it tho as this one kinda looks like a cheap non kashima, doesn't match the kashima fork and shock Razz probably just me beeing picky Razz
  • + 1
 I just love pinkbike MODS....Someone brings up a valid point that people get butthurt about and they delete the comment. I had no idea lycra was such a sensitive topic.
  • + 2
 I can deal with boost, I can't deal with a lack of chain guide and a press fit bb
  • + 3
 Oh! Oh! Let me be the first to say it.... PF BB. Boost.
  • + 2
 Youre way late haha
  • + 6
 No, I'm just unpopular!
  • - 7
flag theminsta (Aug 26, 2015 at 14:52) (Below Threshold)
 Instead of making millions of hubs outdated, they could have made asymmetric rims that "BOOST" the nipple hole between the flanges for the stronger wheel. Bike industry is f*cked up and retarded.

#AsymmetricRimsAreBetterThanBoost
  • + 2
 No chain guide option = no deal. I'm baffled that a trail bike can come out in 2015 and not have any kind of guide option.
  • + 1
 Doesn't Yeti have detachable ISCG 05 mounts that are sold seperately?
  • - 2
 Pinkbike is a joke. No wonder Amanda Batty left. Vital has already posted more eurobike articles anyways. I'll be heading over there for my mtb news from now on. Have fun drooling over and arguing over this bike that 80% of you can't even afford anyways. Have fun riding your XC trails on your 100mm bikes...
  • + 0
 Amanda Batty? Really. That's what you're concerned about?
  • + 6
 You bet I have fun on my 100mm travel bike riding my XC trails. Any problem with that?
  • + 4
 Haha, who cares about Amanda batty and where she posts her drivel
  • + 3
 @MTBCAM I don't agree with you on the bike, but if you're not on the same page as many of these d*ckless morons on Amanda Batty, you can't be all bad.
  • + 0
 Like I've said numerous times all over this site, I know Amanda. I've sessioned with her. She is a radd chick and she has a passion for the sport. She's also tough as nails and she is definitely NOT a feminist by any means. People just go along with what everyone else says on here and I bet I'm the only person who's ever even met her let alone ridden with her. Everyone is talking out their ass...
  • + 0
 That's cool, I've never met her and when I read her posts it makes me want to puke. Too many other rad chicks out there who post far better content.
  • + 0
 @kickstand1 Good for you man, you about done dragging this shit out?
  • + 0
 I simply replied to your nonsense.
  • + 1
 "well that's just like....your opinion man" - The Dude
  • + 1
 Yes, it is.
  • + 2
 So, uh, WTF is an E-THRU axle?
  • + 2
 Shimano updated their quick release through axles...
  • + 1
 its shimano's thread pitch. its has different threads then rock shox maxel.
  • + 2
 $3400 for just the frame!? That's a bit much
  • + 1
 Yeti, can you please do a xxl size since this is a 29er? The xl sb95 was puny.
  • + 1
 Excuse my ignorance but what does a boost rear end mean / do..??
  • + 1
 If boost=10mm shorter chain stays then I'm all for it...on 29
  • + 0
 @davetrump I know how this works man... Idk what you're seeing but on my end it's gone. I'm always signed in...
  • + 1
 Boost works....If you haven't ridden it go try it.
  • + 1
 how do u put the chain guide ?
  • + 1
 Wonder which reviewer will break the chainstay of this one first....
  • + 1
 Soooo, when are we going to see a new DH rig, something like a SB8c? Smile
  • + 0
 Eh, looks like a great bike but not for me.
  • - 2
 Yeti geo = conservatism
  • - 2
 looks like its wearing clown shoes
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