Youngest Of The Brood : Commencal Meta HT SXPosted On: October 15, 2014 By : AutoLife Team
Mountain biking is amazing fun for us at AutoLife. It is a welcome change from the engine powered beauties we test ride. On this particular day, the sun was shining bright and Mother Nature had decided to take it easy with the heat and humidity. So we dropped by at Epic Mountain Bikes and asked the good folks there to give us a hot, fun bike that would befit that beautiful day. They introduced us to the youngest member of the Commencal family: Meta HT SX. And they threw in Chris Keeling for good measure.
FEATURES AND STYLING
The Commencal Meta HT SX looks like a proper hard tail mountain bike with looks to kill, but it has stayed true to the basics. Its 6066 high end aluminum frame comes in a hot pink hue that demands attention. The geometry boasts a low center of gravity and its 5 year warranty suggests that it is also super strong. Top tubes route the stealth cables under it to keep the entire appearance neat and tidy.
Up front the bike has XFUSION velvet RL forks with 140mm travel with air spring system to easily adjust sag according to the rider’s hand size. A 50mm Alpha stem in a black matt finish stands out beautifully with the pink and provides an aggressive enduro feel without compromising on the comfort. The triple-butted high-end alloy 750mm Alpha handlebars with laser marks to help find the right handlebar orientation as well as place the grips, shifters and brake levers optimally.
The main attractions at the rear are the 420mm short chainstays and the 66.5° standard ISIS bottom bracket. The BB drops 30mm below the already low 26 inch wheel’s axles which promise better stability, nicer braking, and nicer climbing on steep stuff. Of course those claims were put to the test.
To test the youngest Commencal, we got the young Nepali cycling sensation Chris Keeling to push the limits of the Meta HT SX.
Hard tails are more demanding in nature, and that’s what makes it fun. This is the case with the Meta HT SX, taken a step further. With a 1×9 speed drivetrain you’re left wishing for more gears on some uphill climbs. However, regularly riding on such drivetrains will help make you a stronger rider. Add to it the fact that you have fewer controls to worry about and less maintenance to do, the 1×9 speed drivetrain does not seem too bad.
As it turns out, XFusion Velvet forks are great. It really makes the ride a lot of fun keeping things smooth and buttery. Combine that with a slack head angle and downhill trails are even better to come across. The low bottom bracket ensures better handling and stability. The rotors do a decent job, but you’re having so much fun that you hardly ever want to use them.
The 26er is nimble and exciting. The perfect concoction of wide bars, short stems, a low bottom bracket and 140mm air forks it is a joy to ride. Commencal refer to it as “short wings”; but whatever you call it the short chainstay is a welcome development and makes handling a lot better. We won’t blame you if you’re regularly tempted to get your front wheels off the ground.
When you want it to be aggressive, it does the job. It is rowdy enough to conquer unchartered terrains and well mannered on the trails. Overall, like its Meta SX older brother, it is extremely playful and successfully carries on the family pride.
Frame: Meta Hardtail SX, Alloy 6061 Triple Butted, Top Tube Hidden Cable Path
Fork: Xfusion Velvet Rl, 15qr Lockx, 140mm
Headset: Neco Semi Integrated, Zs44
Stem: Alpha Fr, Alloy 2014 Forged, 50mm, 0° Rise, Ø31,8mm
Bar: Alpha, Alloy 6061db, 0.75”Rise, 750mm, Ø31,8mm
Grips: Commencal 2014 Lock On, Outside Ø30mm, Soft Compound
Brakes: Tektro Hdc330 Hydraulic Disc Brake 180mm/180mm, With Reach Adjustment
Shifters: Sram X5 1×9 Speed
Rear Mech: Sram X5 9 Speed
Bottom Bracket: Neco Isis Bb 68mm Sealed Bearings
Cranks: Samox Isis, Alloy 32th Chainring, 170mm
Chain Device: E13 Ls1
Chain: Yaban S9
Cassette: Sram Pg950 11-34t
Rims: Jalcco 26″, 32h Double Wall, 24,5mm, Pin Joint, Disc Version
Hubs: Joytech 32h, Loose Ball
Spokes: Steel 1,8mm Black – Brass 12mm Black
Tyres: Kenda Nevegal 26×2,35 Front And Rear
Seatpost: Commencal Alloy No Offset, 31,6mm, One Piece Design, 350mm
Seatpost Clamp: Quick Release
Saddle: Commencal Meta By Velo, Crmo Rails
Epic Mountain Bike