Just felt underpowered
For £188 you get a full set of Magura MT Trail Sport brakes complete with stainless steel rotors (£25) and adapters (£8.50).
The reason it’s sold as a set is because you get a more powerful four-piston front brake to do most of the stopping and a two-piston rear to save weight and to improve feel.
The MT Trail Sport features an alloy lever, composite body and one-piece, forged aluminium caliper. Most other brakes in this test use a parallel piston but the MT Trail Sport is a radial design, which means the master cylinder (or main piston) is perpendicular to the handlebar. Configuring the brake this way has two advantages – the lever takes up less space on the bar and the reach adjustment is on the front, so is way easier to access. The downside of radial design is the lever arcs into the handlebar at a tighter angle, which can feel like you finger is being dragged off the end of the lever. Radial designs work best when the reach is wound right out, which isn’t good if you have small hands.
Despite the stubby lever blade the MT Trail Sport does have a soft feel and lightweight action. However, there’s dead travel before the power kicks in and the lever can also pull all the way to the bar if you yank it suddenly. The brake has a good initial bite but the power seems to drops off the deeper into stroke.
The idea of a different pistons front and rear makes a lot of sense, you see this sort of thing on motorbikes all the time, but the MT Trail Sport just felt underpowered. Add in the odd lever dynamic and we just didn’t feel that confident riding this brake.