More money = more speed?

Does more money get you more speed? We pitched a £1,000 bike against a £6,000 bike and did some stopwatch science to find some answers.

>>> The best full suspension mountain bike of 2017

Bossnut vs 5010

The two bikes we used are the superb Calibre Bossnut from Go Outdoors, and the gorgeous Santa Cruz 5010 CC.

To keep the test as fair as possible, both roll on 27.5in wheels and rock 130mm of travel.

At a pound shy of six grand, you’ll need deep pockets to afford the Santa Cruz, and our bike didn’t even come with the carbon wheel option.

Walk into a Go Outdoors superstore, however, and you could be riding away on a Calibre Bossnut for only nine-hundred and ninety-nine pounds.

How much faster is an expensive bike?

We’d all love to own a top of the range suspension bike, dripping with carbon fibre and fancy gold coatings. But the reality is often something much more modest.

>>> How to ride your mountain bike faster

Now we all know that spending thousands on a top of the range bike won’t make you a better rider, but will it make you faster?

We went to the Forest of Dean to try and find out.

How we tested

To do this, we timed ourselves on a climb and a descent, and used the results to decide whether that posh, boutique bike you’ve always dreamed about will actually get you to the top of hill, or the bottom of the hill, any quicker.

The descent we chose is one hundred per cent fast, flowing singletrack that tested the bikes’ handling, acceleration and ability to carry speed.

It wasn’t a technically demanding run, but it’s typical of the kind of trail centre singletrack that most people ride on.

After a sighting lap, our two lab rats each did a timed run as fast as they could go. Then they swapped bikes and repeated the descent.

Finally we moved on to our hill climb challenge, where light weight and efficient suspension should have proved to be a big advantage.


Before we examine the results, lets get the caveats out of the way.

To get a more accurate conclusion, ideally we would have carried out a series of runs with a larger sample of riders.

Equally, a power meter would have been useful to keep our efforts consistent on the climbs.

The results

You’ll have to watch the video at the top of this page to find out our in-depth findings. We hope you enjoy it!