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Kinesis Tripster AT review

16 Nov 2017
Verdict:

An all-conquering, all-fun all-terrain package that's ready for any adventure

Cyclist Rating: 
Price: 
£1,699

Kinesis was somewhat ahead of the trend when it released the titanium ATR bike several years ago, which has converted riders from all backgrounds to this new style of versatile bike.

The new AT is a cheaper aluminium version that has also been modernised to be compatible with 650b wheels, also adding cable ports on the main frame that can accept standard or Di2 cables.

Kinesis has traditionally been a frame-only supplier, but our test bike came fitted out with the SRAM Rival 1x build kit.

The mix of SRAM drivetrain components with own-brand Crosslight wheels makes for a well-rounded package that aims to please as many different riding styles as possible.

While the TRP Spyre brakes didn’t cause us any major problems, we found they lacked the ultimate stopping power of full hydraulic options and it’s one area many buyers might look to upgrade over time.

The Vee XCX tyres are relatively narrow at 33mm, but they are tubeless-ready along with the wheels, which is a real plus.

One quibble is the cable routing on the chainstay, with an exposed rear gear cable at an area likely to see plenty of mud, water and grit.

Given the intended purpose of the bike it’s something that could have been solved with a full outer set-up. The alternative Di2 routing also isn’t the tidiest either.

On the tarmac, the AT might lag behind a pure road bike, but when you take it off-road, and add your bikepacking kit? Just wow! It’s a really rewarding and exciting bike to ride.

It feels stable and confident, making us forget all the extra weight we’re carrying on even the fastest of descents.

Overall, it was very well suited to bikepacking, with the tall head tube allowing plenty of space for strapping bags and a full complement of bosses to attach bottle cages, panniers or mudguards.

Many people might still opt to buy it frame-only and get creative with the build, given it can take either 700C or 650B wheel sizes, and tyres sizes up to 50mm (650B) or 45mm (700C), while the Di2 routing also offers riders the possibility of creating something that is perfect for their own riding and budget.

Ratings

Frame 9/10; Components 8/10; Wheels 8/10; The ride 9/10

Verdict: The new Kinesis AT delivers a package that’s ready for whatever adventure you might have planned. While it might not be the fastest or most suitable for faster road riding, it excels off-road on the terrain it was designed for. It's also a bit of a bargain..

Spec

Frame Kinesium aluminium. Full carbon thru-axle fork 
Groupset Sram Rival 1x
Brakes TRP Spyre
Chainset Sram Rival, 40t
Cassette Sram 1130, 11-36
Bars Zipp Service Course
Stem FSA 0S190
Seatpost FSA SL280
Saddle
Wheels Kinesis CX V4, 33mm Vee XCX tyres
Weight 10.3kg (57cm)
Contact kinesisbikes.co.uk