New Ariel 30 Elite is a short-travel trail bike with TRL suspension and an alloy frame


The new Ariel 30 Elite is a “trail-ready downcountry” bike, according to Saracen, it’s got 130mm travel, an alloy frame and some of the smartest component choices we’ve seen since Privateer launched the 141.

In what feels like an onslaught of bike launches at the moment (thank you Sea Otter), Saracen is the latest brand to launch something into the rich seam of down-country mountain bikes we’re currently mining.

Saracen Ariel 30 Elite

The 30 Elite makes some great component choices, with a 12-speed Shimano XT groupset and Fox Performance Elite suspension

Need to know:

  • New Ariel 30 Elite down-country/trail bike with alloy frame and 29in wheels
  • Fox Performance Elite for maximum bang-for-buck
  • Priced at £3,999
  • 170mm dropper posts now standard across the range (150mm on size small)
  • New colourways for other Ariel bikes
Saracen Ariel 30 Elite

The 30 Elite is nailed as a trail/downcountry shredder with a bit of XC legacy thrown in

Ariel 30 Elite

The only new bike in the range so far is the Ariel 30 Elite. It’s a short-travel trail bike that uses a 6013 aluminium frame and Saracen’s TRL suspension design. Priced at £3,999 it’s £700 more expensive than the 30 Pro, so what do you get for your money?

Up front there’s a Fox 36 140 Performance Elite fork and a Fox Float DPS Performance Elite shock (130mm travel) at the rear. In our minds this is where to spend your money as a bike brand, you get all the performance advantages of the Grip 4 damper in Fox’s top-tier Factory suspension, but without the premium pricetag.

The groupset of choice is 12-speed Shimano XT M8100 with Shimano M8120 brake calipers and M8100 XT levers, which isn’t as flashy as an electric groupset or carbon levers, but has proven performance benefits.

The finishing kit is made up of Raceface’s Next R 35 handlebar, ODI grips, a KS LEV Integra dropper and a Turbine R 35 stem.

It uses 29in wheels as standard on sizes L and above, and a mullet setup on sizes small and medium. These are adorned with Maxxis Minion DHRII tyres front and rear.

Saracen Ariel 30 Elite

The 30 Elite uses Fox 36 Performance Elite Forks

“We are super excited to introduce the brand-new Ariel 30 Elite to complete the Ariel 30 line-up,” Andrew Ayers from Saracen said. “We now we have a seriously top-spec short travel trail bike that is perfect for big days out or ripping it up at a trail centre.”

The bike is available to buy now from Saracen’s website.

Saracen Ariel 80 Pro

The new Saracen Ariel 80 Pro colourway

Other newness

The Saracen Ariel range has three different travel options: the Ariel 30 (and now the 30 Elite), the Ariel 60 and the Ariel 80. Each with different types of riders in mind – think trail, enduro etc.

So beyond an entirely new bike, what else has Saracen done? Fans of the Ariel range will now be able to choose new colourways of their favourite bike – including the Ariel Jnr.

Additionally, a longer dropper post (170mm) will now come as standard across the range. That’s on all sizes except small, which will use a 150mm dropper.