Cannondale has released a new, revised version of their trail bike, with the Habit now coming in two distinct configurations that aim to cater to the widest possible range of riders. There are two models, the Habit and Habit LT which, you guessed it, is largely the same bike but with more travel. On a positive note, though, this isn't just bolting on a bigger fork; the LT model also sees the rear travel increase from 130 to 140 mm.
Cannondale claims this frame is meant to be robust, straightforward, and easy to live with. In some ways, this is no surprise. Not least because that's what all bike brands say, but also because the incumbent Habit saw a lot of action under any number of Cannondale's creative riders.
• Wheel size: 29" (27.5" XS Frames)
• Aluminum or carbon frames
• Travel: 130mm (r) / 140mm fork
+10 mm for LT version
• 65.5 / 64.7º (LT) head angle
• 77.5 / 77º (LT) seat tube angle
• Size-specific chainstays
• Sizes: XS, S, M, L, XL
• Price: $2,300 - $5,500 USD
The bikes are both built around a 29" platform, except for the extra-small models which will use 27.5" wheels. The standard Habit has 130 mm rear travel paired to a 140 mm fork, whereas the LT model sees 10 mm more travel front and back. The bikes use the same frame, and the same shock lengths but different stroke lengths. You could, of course, remove the stroke limiting spacer on your standard Habit should you want something slightly deeper feeling in the future, or have the option to make the whole bike slightly more aggressive.
The carbon models will have individual kinematic tunes, whereas the alloy will see three tunes shared between five sizes. While the bike doesn't come in a mix-wheeled option, Cannondale have already been working with Cascade Components and they will make an aftermarket link to convert the bike should you wish to.
Cannondale claims that the Habits are built for fun, and they've tried to make the bike easy to work on and live with. This includes non-headset internally routed cables, standard shock eyelets, a threaded BB and a SRAM UDH.Geometry
The new model sees it grow longer and slacker compared to the current version, increasing by around 20 mm in terms of reach, and going to a slacker head tube angle and steeper seat tube. The new bikes also see their seat tubes shorted and the standover height decrease.
The bikes feature head angles of 65.5 or 64.7 (LT) degrees depending on which travel option you go for, which puts it firmly in the same bracket as this year's releases of similar bikes, such as the Canyon Neuron, Transition Smuggler, and Commencal Tempo. The 77.5 or 77º (LT) seat tube angle is adequately steep to give balance to the reach figures, which are also contemporary at 480 mm for a large. Interestingly enough, this bike, much like the Canyon, sees a comparatively high stack height. The 640+ mm value would have seemed drastic even just a few years ago but is perhaps now going to be a newly established norm.
The bikes use what Cannondale calls their Proportional Response Suspension and Geometry. Whilst many of the key figures in terms of the geometry will translate across sizes, the bikes will come with size-specific rear triangles. Cannondale will also change the suspension kinematics per size. Reading between the lines, I would also imagine they'll be offering size-specific damping tunes. This approach makes sense considering the bikes will not only have different weight riders on them but also because by changing the rear end you're also changing the size of the lever, and isn't uncommon across other brands.
I think size specific rear-ends are really important. Anyone that's experimented with a 0.5-degree geometry flip switch can often be surprised how they notice the difference. It can sometimes be strange to see bikes built around slightly-adjustable geometry and then also come with the same size between the small and extra-large.Build Options & Pricing
The Habit 3 features SRAM NX, Select level suspension from RockShox, and G2 brakes. It's available in two colors and has an RRP of $3,325
The Habit 4 features the fan-favorite Deore 12 speed, a RockShox Recon RL fork, a Deluxe Select shock, and Shimano MT200 brakes. Again, it's available in two colors. It has an RRP of $2,300
The Habit LT uses the alloy frame and an entry-level Lyrik, but comes with the Select+ shock, SLX four-pot brakes and Deore 12 speed. This could really be a good choice for those that want something they can push hard and aren't interested in carbon. It has a retail price of $3,625.
For more information, please visit cannondale.com