Blister Brand Guide: Santa Cruz / Juliana Mountain Bike Lineup, 2020

Intro

When considering a new mountain bike, there are so many similar-looking bikes on the market being made by so many different companies, it is virtually impossible to (1) know where to begin; (2) quickly figure out which one or two products from a given brand might work well for you; and (3) determine what products from other brands might be the most similar and also worth considering.

So in our new “Blister Brand Guide” series, we provide an overview of the entire product lineup of a brand; highlight how each product stands out from the rest of that brand’s lineup; and help you figure out quickly and easily which bike might work best for you.

In our individual product reviews, we go very deep into the details of particular products. With these Brand Guides, the goal is not Depth, but Breadth. Our Brand Guides and full reviews are designed to complement each other — provide a broad overview of entire company lineups, and then also very detailed reviews of individual products. 

Our mountain bike Brand Guides are presented by CBGTrails. Learn more and start planning your trip today at cbgtrails.com, then download the CBG Trails app for info on the 750+ miles of singletrack and 150+ trails in Crested Butte and the Gunnison Valley, Colorado.

See our other MTB Brand Guides

About Santa Cruz

From their beginning in 1994, Santa Cruz has been doing things a bit differently, and their first bike was a “do-it-all” full-suspension rig at a time when that sort of bike was definitely not the norm. They place an emphasis on rider / customer support, and many of their products carry lifetime warranties. They now make everything from entry-level hardtails to carbon World Cup Downhill race rigs, and they only make off-road bikes.

Santa Cruz offers aluminum and carbon frames, with two different carbon frame options: carbon “C” and carbon “CC.” Their carbon “CC” frames are roughly ~280 grams lighter (depending on model and size) than their carbon “C” counterparts, and correspondingly more expensive.

About Juliana

Juliana Bicycles is the “original women’s bike.” Their first bike, made in 1999, was designed for and marketed to women at a time when mountain biking was mostly targeting men. Juliana became integrated with Santa Cruz in 2013, and exists today as Santa Cruz’s sister brand.

Juliana’s bikes all mirror a model in the Santa Cruz lineup, but the Juliana versions differ in terms of frame color, grips, saddle, sizing, and shock tune.

Both Santa Cruz and Juliana are based in Santa Cruz, California.

Current Warranty (for the original, registered owner)

  • Lifetime frame and pivot bearing warranty for models purchased after April 30th, 2015
  • Lifetime warranty on Reserve carbon wheels
  • Replacement frame parts available to the original owner at a minimal charge in the event of a crash or other non-warranty situation for the life of the bike.
  • For more information, visit this website.

Santa Cruz / Juliana’s Suspension design: Virtual Pivot Point (VPP)

(For more on different suspension designs, see our Suspension 101 article)

Before we get into their specific models and build options, here are some things to keep in mind when deciding on which build level to go with, and why.

First, when looking at complete bikes, suspension and wheels are going to make the biggest difference in how a bike really rides. Spend money on those before other things like higher-end drivetrain parts, cockpit parts (e.g., stem, handlebars, etc.), cranks, etc.

Tires make an enormous difference in performance, but are cheaper and easier to upgrade, especially since they tend to wear down quicker than other components. Upgrading a lower-end front tire to something better — and saving the original for rear-tire use — can be a good way to improve a bike while still making use of the originals, since front tires are generally a lot more important than rear tires when it comes to traction.

Drivetrain parts can be upgraded piecemeal as they wear out, or if you just want to upgrade down the line. Higher-end cassettes are mostly just lighter, while higher-end shifters and derailleurs get lighter, smoother, and sometimes last a bit longer as you go up in price.

We’ll outline here the different models in Santa Cruz & Juliana’s MTB lineup, organized from most cross-country-oriented (XC) to downhill-oriented (DH). In other words, the bikes at the top of the list are optimized to pedal and climb uphill very well, while the bikes at the bottom are optimized to handle very rough, steep, and challenging descents very well.

We’ve included some notable information for each model:

Available build kits & their MSRP

  • Best Budget Build: These are the build kits that we think make the most sense for people trying to spend the least amount without ending up with a build that’s going to immediately break or need to be upgraded.
  • Most Performance for the Price: These are the build kits that we think make the most sense for people seeking the best balance of performance and cost. I.e., if you don’t need to get the cheapest bike, but you also don’t need the absolute lightest bike or all the newest bling, this is the build we think makes sense for you.
  • Suspension travel (e.g., 100 mm of travel, 130 mm of travel, etc.)
  • Wheel size (e.g., 27.5”, 27.5+, 29”)
  • Frame material options (e.g., alloy vs. carbon)
  • A brief description of what the bike was designed for and any notable design details.
  • Some of the bike’s most direct competitors from other brands
  • Which Santa Cruz or Juliana bike it’s most similar to
  • Reasons why you should buy it
  • Reasons why you should not buy it

Santa Cruz & Juliana Mountain Bikes

(Most Cross-Country-Oriented to Most Downhill-Oriented)

Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 100 mm
  • Rear: Hardtail
  • 29"
  • Carbon
Santa Cruz’s dedicated XC race hardtail. Fits three water bottle cages.

Consider If:

  • You race or ride XC-style on more smooth trails
  • You appreciate a lightweight hardtail that climbs well
  • You ride or race XC-style for long distances on more smooth trails

Don’t Bother If:

  • You often ride or race steep, technical, and bumpy trails
  • You like a bike that is forgiving on descents
  • R / Carbon C: $2,899
  • S / Carbon C: $3,499 – Best Budget Build
  • S / Carbon C / Reserve 25 Rims: $4,699 
  • XO1 / Carbon CC: $5,399 – Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / Reserve 25 Rims: $6,599
  • XX1 AXS Reserve / Carbon CC: $8,999
  • Carbon CC Frame: $1,899
  • Specialized Epic HT
  • Trek Procaliber
  • Scott Scale
  • Giant XTC
  • Norco Revolver HT
  • Pivot Les
  • Canyon Exceed
Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 100 mm
  • Rear: 100 mm
  • 29"
  • Carbon

Santa Cruz’s full-suspension XC bike. 

More like the Blur (TR Builds) than the Highball.

Consider If:

  • You race or ride XC-style on slightly bumpy, steep, and technical trails
  • You appreciate a full-suspension bike that climbs well
  • You ride or race XC-style for long distances on trails that are more bumpy and / or technical

Don’t Bother If:

  • You often ride or race steep, technical, and bumpy trails
  • You like a bike that is more forgiving on descents than it is a good climber
  • R / Carbon C: $3,799 – Best Budget Build
  • S / Carbon C: $4,499
  • S / Carbon C / Reserve 25 Rims: $5,699 
  • XO1 / Carbon CC: $6,499 – Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / Reserve 25 Rims: $7,699
  • XX1 AXS Reserve / Carbon CC: $9,999
  • Carbon CC Frameset: $2,999
  • Specialized Epic
  • Scott Spark RC
  • Giant Anthem 29
  • Cannondale Scalpel-Si
  • Pivot Mach 4 SL (World Cup Builds)
  • Intense Sniper XC
  • Norco Revolver FS 100
  • Canyon Lux
Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 110 mm
  • Rear: 100 mm
  • 29"
  • Carbon

A more downhill-oriented version of the Blur. It is the same as the Blur, but with a burlier and longer-travel fork, larger front brake rotor, and burlier tires — plus a dropper post.

More like the Blur than the Chameleon

Consider If:

  • You are looking to get a bit more fun out of a full-suspension XC bike
  • You appreciate a dropper post
  • You race or ride XC-style on slightly bumpy, steep, and technical trails

Don’t Bother If:

  • You often ride steep, fast, technical, bumpy trails
  • You like a bike that is more forgiving on descents than it is a good climber
  • S TR / Carbon C: $4,799 – Best Budget Build
  • XO1 TR / Carbon CC: $6,799 – Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1 TR / Carbon CC / Reserve 25 Rims: $7,999
  • XX1 AXS Reserve TR / Carbon CC: $10,299
  • Specialized Epic EVO
  • Trek Top Fuel
  • Yeti SB100
  • Pivot Mach 4 SL
  • Kona Hei Hei
  • Rocky Mountain Element
  • Cannondale Scalpel-Si SE
  • Canyon Lux
Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 130/120 mm
  • Rear: Hardtail
  • 27.5"+ / 29"
  • Carbon or Aluminum

Santa Cruz’s most downhill-capable, less-racing-oriented hardtail. Complete with plus-size tire options and more aggressive geometry.

More like the Santa Cruz Tallboy / Juliana Joplin V3 than the Blur (TR Builds)

Consider If:

  • You appreciate hardtails, but want one that has slightly more aggressive geometry
  • You often ride trails that are slightly steep, bumpy, and technical
  • You are looking for a bike with plus-sized tires

Don’t Bother If:

  • You often ride steep, fast, technical, bumpy trails
  • You like a bike that is more forgiving on descents than it is a good climber
  • You are looking for a lightweight, XC race-style hardtail
  • D / Aluminum / 29: $1,799
  • D+ / Aluminum / 27.5+: $1,799
  • R / Aluminum / 29: $2,399 – Best Budget Build
  • R+ / Aluminum / 27.5+: $2,399 – Best Budget Build
  • S / Aluminum / 29: $3,199 
  • S+ / Aluminum / 27.5+: $3,199
  • S / Carbon C / 29: $3,799 – Most Performance for the Price
  • S+ / Carbon C / 27.5+: $3,799 – Most Performance for the Price
  • SE / Carbon C / 29: $5,699
  • SE+ / Carbon C / 27.5+: $5,699
  • Aluminum Frame: $749
  • Carbon C Frame: $1,599
  • Trek Stache
  • Specialized Fuse
  • Kona Honzo
  • Transition Vanquish
  • Nukeproof Scout 290
Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 120 mm
  • Rear: 110 mm
  • 29"
  • Carbon or Aluminum

In the XC / short-travel Trail category, this bike shows its capability on the descent.

More like the Tallboy / Joplin V4 than the Chameleon.

Consider If:

  • You like a bike that has a nice balance of good climbing and descending capability
  • You like to ride long distances on XC-style trails
  • You want a full-suspension XC bike with a bit more forgiveness on the way down

Don’t Bother If:

  • You want the fastest XC race bike
  • You’re willing to sacrifice some climbing efficiency for even more forgiveness and capability on descents
  • D / Aluminum: $2,699*
  • R / Aluminum: $3,399* – Best Budget Build
  • R / Carbon C: $3,899* 
  • S / Carbon C: $4,799*
  • S / Carbon C / Reserve 27 Rims: $5,999 
  • XO1 / Carbon CC: $6,799* – Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / Reserve 27 Rims: $7,999*
  • XX1 Reserve / Carbon CC: $9,199
  • XTR Reserve / Carbon CC: $9,499
  • Aluminum Frameset: $1,999*
  • Carbon CC Frameset: $2,999*

* The Juliana Joplin is only available in these build kits.

  • Specialized Epic EVO
  • Trek Top Fuel
  • Yeti SB100
  • Scott Spark
Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 130 mm
  • Rear: 120 mm
  • 29"
  • Carbon or Aluminum

Released August 2019, the new Tallboy / Joplin now has lower-link mounted VPP suspension, increased travel, and slack 65.5-degree head tube angle (low setting). High / Low geometry settings via flip chip. +/- 10 mm chainstay length adjustment via rear axle flip chip.

More like the Tallboy / Joplin V3 than the 5010.

Consider If:

  • You are looking for a relatively well-rounded bike
  • You want a downhill-capable, short-travel 29er
  • Customizing your geometry is appealing to you

Don’t Bother If:

  • You’re looking for a XC-race-style full-suspension 29er
  • You are willing to sacrifice climbing ability for more descending capability
  • D / Aluminum: $2,699*
  • R / Aluminum: $3,399* – Best Budget Build
  • R / Carbon C: $4,199*
  • S / Carbon C: $4,999*
  • S / Carbon C / Reserve 27 Rims: $6,199 
  • XO1 / Carbon CC: $6,999* – Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / Reserve 27 Rims: $8,199*
  • XTR Reserve / Carbon CC: $9,799
  • XX1 AXS Reserve / Carbon CC: $10,399

* The Juliana Joplin is only available in these builds

  • Transition Smuggler
  • Ibis Ripley 
  • Devinci Django 29
  • Giant Trance 29
  • Trek Fuel EX
Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 130 mm
  • Rear: 130 mm
  • 27.5” or 27.5”+
  • Carbon or Aluminum

Santa Cruz / Juliana’s best quiver killer. Redone for 2019, this bike got longer and more slack. High / low geometry settings courtesy of a flip-chip.

More like the Tallboy / Joplin V4 than the Hightower / Maverick.

Consider If:

  • Fun and playfulness are higher priorities for you than flat-out speed (on climbs and descents)
  • You are looking for a well-balanced bike in terms of climbing and descending
  • You like a bike that is agile and playful

Don’t Bother If:

  • You ride trails that are mostly flat and smooth
  • You are looking for an exceptional climbing bike
  • You are willing to sacrifice climbing ability for a bike that crushes descents
  • D / Aluminum / 27.5: $2,699*
  • D+ / Aluminum / 27.5+: $2,699*
  • R / Aluminum / 27.5: $3,399* – Best Budget Build
  • R+ / Aluminum / 27.5+: $3,399* – Best Budget Build
  • S / Aluminum / 27.5: $3,999
  • S+ / Aluminum / 27.5+: $3,999 
  • R / Carbon C / 27.5: $3,999*
  • R+ / Carbon C / 27.5+: $3,999*
  • S / Carbon C / 27.5: $4,899* 
  • S+ / Carbon C / 27.5+: $4,899*
  • S / Carbon C / 27.5 / Reserve 27 Rims: $6,099
  • S+ / Carbon C / 27.5+ / Reserve 37 Rims: $6,099
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / 27.5: $6,799* – Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1+ / Carbon CC / 27.5+: $6,799* – Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / 27.5 / Reserve 27 Rims: $7,999*
  • XO1+ / Carbon CC / 27.5+ / Reserve 37 Rims: $7,999*
  • XX1 AXS Reserve / Carbon CC / 27.5: $10,299
  • XX1 AXS Reserve+ / Carbon CC / 27.5+: $10,299
  • Aluminum Frameset: $1,999*
  • Carbon CC Frameset: $2,999*

* The Juliana Furtado is only available in these build kits.

  • Specialized Stumpjumper ST 27.5
  • Giant Trance Advanced
  • Kona Process 134 27.5
  • Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt
  • Ibis Mojo 3
  • Norco Torrent FS
  • Evil The Calling
  • Cannondale Bad Habit

 

Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 150 mm
  • Rear: 140 mm
  • 29"
  • Carbon or Aluminum

New for 2020, the Hightower / Maverick combines elements from the old Version 1 Hightower and the longer-travel Hightower LT. Redone with longer and more slack geometry, this bike is still more than willing to climb for a worthy descent. Revamped with a lower-link mounted shock. High / low geometry options thanks to a flip-chip on the link where the shock mounts. Can run 27.5”+ wheels and tires.

More like the Bronson / Roubion than the 5010 / Furtado.

Consider If:

  • You’re looking for a do-it-all Trail bike
  • You appreciate a good, fast, technical, and / or steep descent, and are willing to climb for it
  • You occasionally ride lift-served bike parks or shuttle to the top of descents

Don’t Bother If:

  • The trails you ride are mostly smooth and flat
  • You want a very capable and forgiving bike that crushes descents and are willing to sacrifice some climbing ability
  • D / Aluminum: $2,899
  • R / Aluminum: $3,499 – Best Budget Build (Santa Cruz) 
  • S / Aluminum: $4,199 
  • R / Carbon C: $4,299* – Best Budget Build (Juliana)
  • S / Carbon C: $5,199*
  • S / Carbon C / Reserve 30 Rims: $6,399
  • XO1 / Carbon CC: $7,099* – Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / Reserve 30 Rims: $8,299*
  • XTR Reserve / Carbon CC: $9,899
  • XX1 AXS Reserve / Carbon CC: $10,499
  • Aluminum Frameset: $1,999
  • Carbon CC Frameset: $3,299*

* The Juliana Maverick is only available in these build kits.

  • Trek Fuel EX
  • Pivot Switchblade
  • Yeti SB130
  • Specialized Stumpjumper 29
  • Commencal Meta TR 29
  • Rocky Mountain Instinct
  • Intense Primer 29
  • Norco Sight 29
  • Scott Genius
  • Canyon Strive
  • Ibis Ripmo AF
Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 160 mm
  • Rear: 150 mm
  • 27.5” or 27.5”+
  • Carbon or Aluminum

The Bronson was redone for the 2019 lineup, taking one of Santa Cruz’s most popular bikes and making it longer, more slack, and increasing fork travel. They also redesigned the VPP suspension platform to allow for a lower-link mounted shock. High / Low geometry flip chip.

More like the Hightower LT than the Hightower / Maverick.

Consider If:

  • Fun is a big priority for you
  • You want a bike that is capable and forgiving on the descents
  • You appreciate a playful, nimble bike
  • You like the nimble feel of 27.5” wheels
  • You race Enduro, like to shuttle to the top of descents, and / or ride lift-served terrain

Don’t Bother If:

  • You ride mostly smooth and flat trails
  • You are looking for an cross-country-style bike that climbs very well
  • You want the fast-rolling performance of 29” wheels
  • R / Aluminum / 27.5: $3,499* – Best Budget Build
  • R+ / Aluminum / 27.5+: $3,499 – Best Budget Build
  • S / Aluminum / 27.5: $4,199
  • S+ / Aluminum / 27.5+: $4,199 
  • R / Carbon C / 27.5: $4,399*
  • R+ / Carbon C / 27.5+: $4,399
  • S / Carbon C / 27.5: $5,199*
  • S+ / Carbon C / 27.5+: $5,199
  • S / Carbon C / 27.5 / Reserve 30 Rims: $6,399
  • S+ / Carbon C / 27.5+ / Reserve 37 Rims: $6,399
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / 27.5: $7,099* – Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1+ / Carbon CC / 27.5+: $7,099 – Most Performance for the Price 
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / 27.5 / Reserve 30 Rims: $8,299*
  • XO1+ / Carbon CC / 27.5+ / Reserve 37 Rims: $8,299
  • XTR Reserve / Carbon CC / 27.5: $9,899
  • XTR Reserve+ / Carbon CC / 27.5+: $9,899
  • XX1 AXS Reserve / Carbon CC / 27.5: $10,499
  • XX1 AXS Reserve+ / Carbon CC / 27.5+: $10,499
  • Aluminum Frameset: $1,999*
  • Carbon CC Frameset: $3,299*

*The Juliana Roubion is only available in these build kits. 

  • Specialized Stumpjumper 27.5 / Stumpjumper EVO 27.5
  • Trek Remedy
  • Pivot Mach 6
  • Yeti SB140  
  • Kona Process 153 27.5
  • Rocky Mountain Altitude
  • Intense Primer 27.5
  • YT Jeffsy 27
  • Norco Sight 27.5”
  • Canyon Spectral
Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 150 mm
  • Rear: 150 mm
  • 29"
  • Carbon

The Hightower LT was effectively replaced by the Megatower for model year 2020. It was originally a longer-travel iteration of the Version 1 Hightower.

More like the Megatower than the Bronson / Roubion.

Consider If:

  • You want a bike that is capable and forgiving on the descents
  • You race Enduro, like to shuttle to the top of descents, and / or ride lift-served terrain
  • You want the benefits of fast-rolling 29” wheels
  • You enjoy pushing your limits on fast, steep, chunky, and technical terrain
  • You will be shopping the used bike market or looking for on-sale bikes

Don’t Bother If:

  • You ride mostly smooth and flat trails
  • You are looking for an XC-style bike that climbs very well
  • You want a more freeride-style long-travel bike, rather than an Enduro racer
  • You want the latest-and-greatest from Santa Cruz
  • R / Carbon C: $3,999 – Best Budget Build
  • S / Carbon C: $4,899
  • S / Carbon C / Reserve 30 Rims: $6,099
  • XO1 / Carbon CC: $6,799 – Most Performance for the Price 
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / Reserve 30 Rims: $7,999
  • XX1 Reserve / Carbon CC: $9,299
  • XTR Reserve / Carbon CC: $9,599
  • Carbon CC frame only: $2,999
  • Specialized Stumpjumper 29 & 2018/2019 Enduro 29
  • Trek Slash
  • Kona Process 153 29
  • Scott Genius 
  • Canyon Strive
Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 160 mm
  • Rear: 160 mm
  • 29"
  • Carbon

Santa Cruz’s longest-travel 29er Trail bike. Lower-link mounted shock and long, slack geometry designed to take on big, chunky descents. Adjustable chainstay length, high / low geometry settings via a flip-chip, and air or coil shock build kit options.

More like the Hightower LT than the Nomad.

Consider If:

  • You want a bike that is capable and forgiving on the descents
  • You race Enduro, like to shuttle to the top of descents, and / or ride lift-served terrain
  • You want the benefits of fast-rolling 29” wheels
  • You enjoy pushing your limits on fast, steep, chunky, and technical terrain

Don’t Bother If:

  • You ride mostly smooth and flat trails
  • You are looking for an XC-style bike that climbs very well
  • You want a more freeride-style long-travel bike, rather than an Enduro racer
  • R / Carbon C: $4,499 – Best Budget Build
  • S / Carbon C / RockShox Super Deluxe Select+: $5,399
  • S / Carbon C / RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Select+: $5,399
  • S / Carbon C / RockShox Super Deluxe Select+ / Reserve 30 Rims: $6,599
  • S / Carbon C / RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Select+ / Reserve 30 Rims: $6,599
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate: $7,199 – Most Performance for the Price 
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate: $7,199 – Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate / Reserve 30 Rims: $8,399
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate / Reserve 30 Rims: $8,399
  • XTR Reserve / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate: $9,999
  • XTR Reserve / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate: $9,999
  • XX1 AXS Reserve / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate: $10,499
  • XX1 AXS Reserve / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate: $10,499
  • Carbon CC Frameset with RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate: $3299
  • Carbon CC Frameset with RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate: $3299

 

  • Specialized Enduro (2020)
  • Pivot Firebird 29
  • Yeti SB150
  • Giant Reign Advanced Pro 29
  • Rocky Mountain Instinct BC Edition
  • Intense Carbine
  • Nukeproof Mega 290
  • YT Capra 29
  • Norco Range 29
  • Devinci Spartan 29
  • Evil The Wreckoning LB
  • Scott Ransom
Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 170 mm
  • Rear: 170 mm
  • 27.5"
  • Carbon or Aluminum

Santa Cruz’s longest-travel 27.5″ Trail bike. Redesigned for the 2018 lineup with updated geometry and lower-link mounted shock. Adjustable high / low geometry via flip chip and air or coil shock build kit options.

More like the Megatower than the V10.

Consider If:

  • You want a bike that is capable and forgiving on the descents
  • You race Enduro, like to shuttle to the top of descents, and / or ride lift-served terrain
  • You enjoy pushing your limits on fast, steep, chunky, and technical terrain
  • You are looking for a freeride-style long-travel bike, rather than an Enduro racer

Don’t Bother If:

  • You ride mostly smooth and flat trails
  • You are looking for an XC-style bike that climbs very well
  • R / Aluminum: $3,599 – Best Budget Build
  • S / Aluminum: $4,299 
  • R / Carbon C: $4,499
  • S / Carbon C: $5,299
  • S / Carbon C / Reserve 30 Rims: $6,499
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Select Ultimate: $7,199 – Most Performance for the Price 
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate: $7,199 – Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Select Ultimate / Reserve 30 Rims: $8,399
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate / Reserve 30 Rims: $8,399
  • XX1 AXS Reserve / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Select Ultimate: $10,499
  • XX1 AXS Reserve / Carbon CC / RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate: $10,499
  • Aluminum Frameset: $1,999
  • Carbon CC Frameset with RockShox Super Deluxe RCT: $3,299
  • Carbon CC Frameset with RockShox Super Deluxe Coil RCT: $3,299

 

  • Pivot Firebird
  • Yeti SB165
  • Kona Process 165
  • Giant Reign / Reign SX
  • Commencal Clash
  • Transition Patrol
  • Rocky Mountain Slayer 27.5″
  • Nukeproof Mega 275
  • YT Capra 27
  • Norco Range 27.5”
  • Devinci Spartan 27
  • Cannondale Jekyll
  • Specialized Enduro (2018-2019)
  • Canyon Torque
Blister Brand Guide; Blister breaks down Santa Cruz and Juliana's entire 2020 mountain bike lineup
  • Front: 203 mm
  • Rear: 215 mm
  • 27.5" or 29"
  • Carbon
Santa Cruz’s dedicated Downhill bike. Separate 29” and 27.5” platforms, adjustable chainstay length, and high / low geometry via flip chip.

Consider If:

  • You often ride lift-served bike parks or like to shuttle to the top of descents
  • The trails you ride are fast, steep, technical, rocky, rooty, and / or have large jumps
  • You participate in downhill races

Don’t Bother If:

  • You plan on climbing to the top of descents
  • The trails you ride aren’t very fast, steep, technical, and bumpy
  • S / Carbon C / 27.5: $5,999 – Best Budget Build & Most Performance for the Price
  • S / Carbon C / 29: $5,999 – Best Budget Build & Most Performance for the Price
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / 27.5: $8,199
  • XO1 / Carbon CC / 29: $8,199
  • Carbon CC Frameset: $3,699

 

  • Trek Session
  • Specialized Demo 8
  • YT Tues 
  • Giant Glory 
  • Pivot Phoenix
  • Devinci Wilson 
  • Commencal Supreme DH
  • Canyon Sender
  • Scott Gambler

2 comments on “Blister Brand Guide: Santa Cruz / Juliana Mountain Bike Lineup, 2020”

  1. This is a bit of a departure from the normally edifying Blister content. It doesn’t really add to the information available on the Santa Cruz or other bike websites. It also leaves me wondering why the Crested Butte Trail Gunisson Valley Trails (Gunnison-Crested Butte Tourism Association) want to promote Santa Cruz Bicycles? What’s the connection?

    • Hi, Fraser – this is *definitely* a departure from what we normally do — which is precisely why we are doing this. We think it’s a valuable complement to our regularly scheduled programming.

      I think our Intro explains this pretty well — and we added a bit to the intro (thanks to your comments) to try to make things even clearer. But let me state again what we are — and what we are not — trying to accomplish here with these Guides.

      In our individual product reviews, we go into massive depth and detail. (To some, it can be a pretty overwhelming amount of detail.) With these Brand Guides, the goal is not Depth, it is Breadth.

      Our aim with these Brand Guides is to let people (a) quickly and easily get clearer on a massive number of products on the market, and (b) better understand — quickly — where various bikes fit into a single brand’s own lineup. That’s a very specific intention, and we believe that it’s a useful one to help people home in on several bikes that might work well for them. Breadth.

      Now, to those who are already very well versed in all the options out there… these guides will be less useful. But we’d estimate that for about 90-95% of mtn bikers, these Guides / brand overviews will provide lot of value — and perhaps especially in terms of quickly learning which bikes from other companies are most similar to a bike they might be considering. Very few — if any? — bike websites present that comparison information.

      Finally, CBG Trails is the presenting sponsor of *all* of our Bike Brand Guides — there will be, in total, more than 20 of these.

Leave a Comment