Not to our tastes
The Syncros Hixon SL IC is moulded from carbon to give it a really sleek, futuristic shape that accentuates some highly sculpted frames.
One-piece bar and stem units are not a new idea. The aim is the same as it was when Klein (now defunct) dabbled with them in the nineties on its fabled Attitude and Adroit models; save weight by eliminating bolts and clamps, and clean up the cockpit. Back then Klein used aluminium, Syncros use carbon.
There are three ‘virtual’ extensions for the stem – 40, 50 and 60mm – but just one width – 760mm. Given that it’s impossible to add width to a bar, we’d prefer Syncros made it 780mm and let the consumer decide whether to cut it down or not.
As part of the stem length comes from the forward sweep of the bar itself it looks quite strange mounted to your bike, as you see much more of the fork and front axle than normal, but Syncros states that it puts your hands in the same position as its equivalent FL1.5 bar and stem. This is only partly true as it depends on the head angle of the bike. Because the bar cannot be rotated, a slack head angle will increase the backsweep and reduce the upsweep relative to a steeper head angle.
You’re basically locked into the default position, whether you like it or not. And while we admit it’s a personal thing, there’s slightly more backsweep and not quite enough upsweep to suit our tastes. We do like the rough finish at the ends of the bars however, as you don’t need to torque up the bolts holding the controls to stop them slipping.
As a way of chipping away at the weight of your bike, the 299g Hixon is only moderately successful, as the combination of a Syntace Megaforce stem and Race Face carbon bar is actually both lighter and cheaper. And you don’t get locked into one hand position.