SRAM XX1 – is it any good?

SRAM have had a meeting and decided that things need turning up to 11 – and it turns out it's not such a bad idea. For a start, you can bin off your front mech and, for that matter, any chain device.

The XX1 chain is direction specific, the chainring is designed to hook up perfectly with it, and the straight parallelogram rear mech features the new Type 2 clutch mechanism to tension the chain. Cleaner, lighter, simpler.

Alright, the test riding at Eurobike is even more limited than our German, but despite our best efforts, we never dropped a chain. That dinner plate-sized 42-tooth sprocket at the back is where the magic happens though, enabling you to spin up climbs like an over-excited mountain goat.

Good then? Yes. Unfortunately it won’t be cheap but SRAM have hinted that if XX1 is well received, a trickle-down version may appear.

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