For maximum speed in the biggest mountains.
The Santa Cruz Hightower LT uses a new swingarm and upper linkage to kick out 150mm of rear travel. Designed for top level enduro racing.
Santa Cruz Hightower LT need to know
- 150mm travel
- Carbon C or CC front triangle,
aluminiumfull carbon swingarm
- 29in wheels only
- 66.4° head angle
- 73.7° seat angle
- 438mm chainstays
- 1x specific
- Sizes: S, M, L, XL, XXL
- SRP: £3,949 to £6,699
The Hightower LT is not a replacement for the existing Santa Cruz Hightower. After all, it’s not been that long since the Hightower was debuted. The two models will run concurrently. Although it will be interesting to see who buys the existing Hightower to run as a 29er when this LT version is available.
The Hightower LT can not be run as a Plus bike. There’s no second shock position on the upper linkage. There’s also nowhere near enough tyre clearance. As it is, the max tyre size is claimed as 2.5in (so presumably the new wave of 2.6in tyres are a no-no too).
Modified Hightowers have been spotted under various Santa Cruz riders for months now. Ratboy may have been the one getting most of the attention on social media but savvy bikes nerds first saw a different Hightower midway through last year.
It was mid-season in 2016 when Santa Cruz enduro racer Mark Scott apparently requested a bit more travel out of his Hightower. So a new set of upper links were fabricated that upped the travel to 146mm. Other Santa Cruz riders quickly jumped on the case. Iago Garay was a prominent adopter of this funny new tweaked Hightower.
The problem could not be solved properly by merely slapping in some new linkages. The new linkages resulted in some incompatibility with certain components and the spring rate was not ideal.
The new Hightower LT sports a whole new carbon swingarm design as well as new upper linkage design. Travel is a nice round figure too (150mm).
The Hightower LT uses the same front triangle as the regular Hightower. This results in a 7mm shorter reach, 0.5° slacker head angle and seat angle.
Other points of note: accepts a water bottle, takes piggyback rear shocks, native 180mm post mount rear, ISCG-05, 73mm threaded BB.