Santa Cruz Heckler SL First Look Review

The Santa Cruz Heckler SL has garnered much anticipation in the world of electric mountain bikes, and for good reason. Designed for capable and adventurous riders seeking an exhilarating experience on the trails, this trail bike offers impressive handling and travel with its 160mm-travel fork and 150mm-travel rear suspension.

However, what truly sets the Heckler SL apart is its unique motor and battery setup, as well as its mullet design that combines the best of both wheel sizes.

With various build options and a wide price range, the Heckler SL caters to a diverse range of riders. In this first look review, we will explore the frame and fork, motor and battery performance, componentry, and discuss the exciting new category of eMTBs that the Heckler SL represents.

So, let’s dive in and discover what makes this bike truly exceptional.

Design and Construction

The design and construction of the Santa Cruz Heckler SL showcases the brand’s expertise in creating a high-performance trail bike that combines durability, versatility, and an electrifying riding experience.

With a 160mm-travel fork and 150mm-travel rear suspension, the Heckler SL offers similar handling and travel to the un-electrified Bronson. It features a mullet design with a 29-inch front wheel and 27.5-inch rear wheel, providing optimal stability and maneuverability.

The frame options include standard C carbon fiber or CC carbon fiber construction, with the CC build using more sophisticated materials to reduce weight.

The Heckler SL is equipped with Fazua’s Ride60 motor, offering 250W nominal wattage and 60Nm of torque. The battery capacity is 430Wh, providing ample power for long rides.

Suspension and Handling

With its impressive design and construction, the Santa Cruz Heckler SL sets the stage for an in-depth exploration of its suspension and handling capabilities.

This eMTB is equipped with a 160mm-travel fork and 150mm-travel rear suspension, allowing it to tackle rough and technical trails with ease.

The Heckler SL’s suspension system, built on Santa Cruz’s renowned VPP design, provides excellent traction, stability, and control, ensuring a smooth and controlled ride over varied terrain.

The bike’s mullet design, with a 29-inch front wheel and 27.5-inch rear wheel, further enhances its handling capabilities, offering the perfect blend of agility and stability.

Whether climbing steep inclines or descending challenging descents, the Santa Cruz Heckler SL delivers a responsive and confidence-inspiring ride that will leave riders wanting more.

Motor and Battery Performance

Enhancing the overall performance of the Santa Cruz Heckler SL, the motor and battery system delivers impressive power and endurance for an exhilarating eMTB experience.

The Heckler SL is equipped with Fazua’s Ride60 motor, providing 250W of nominal wattage and 60Nm of torque. Paired with a 430Wh battery, weighing 5 lbs, riders can expect a reliable and long-lasting power source.

While the Heckler SL sacrifices some acceleration and climbing power compared to the Shimano EP8 motor found in the standard Heckler, it still offers ample assistance for tackling challenging terrains.

With its fully enclosed and removable battery system, riders can conveniently swap out batteries for extended adventures.

The motor and battery performance of the Santa Cruz Heckler SL truly elevate the riding experience, making it an excellent choice for eMTB enthusiasts.

Componentry and Build Options

When considering the componentry and build options of the Santa Cruz Heckler SL, riders have a range of high-quality alloy and carbon fiber cockpit parts to choose from.

The bike comes with a dropper post as standard across all builds, ensuring optimal maneuverability on the trails.

Different builds offer various drivetrains and brakes, all from SRAM, allowing riders to find the setup that best suits their riding style and preferences.

The Heckler SL boasts a wide gearing range with a 10-52t, 12-speed cassette, providing versatility for different terrains and elevations.

Additionally, all builds of the Heckler SL are equipped with Maxxis Minion tires, known for their excellent traction and durability.

The Future of Emtbs

The future of eMTBs promises exciting advancements in technology and riding experiences.

As lighter eMTBs like the Santa Cruz Heckler SL and Turbo Levo SL continue to change the game, riders can now enjoy both assistance and the thrill of riding.

These bikes, equipped with mid-drive motors and removable batteries, offer the perfect blend of power and agility.

With a 430Wh battery and a 250W motor, riders can expect extended range and assistance on climbs.

The Heckler SL and Turbo Levo SL are leading the way in this new category, providing a ride experience that feels like a regular mountain bike.

As technology progresses, eMTB enthusiasts can look forward to even more exciting times ahead.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Does the Santa Cruz Heckler SL Compare to the Standard Heckler in Terms of Motor and Battery Performance?

The Santa Cruz Heckler SL differs from the standard Heckler in terms of motor and battery performance. It features Fazua’s Ride60 motor with 250W nominal wattage and 60Nm of torque, as well as a 430Wh battery. The standard Heckler, on the other hand, has a Shimano EP8 battery with 85Nm of torque. The Heckler SL sacrifices some acceleration and climbing power compared to the EP8 motor, but still offers assistance for fit riders on climbs.

Are There Any Frame Options Available for the Santa Cruz Heckler Sl?

Yes, there are frame options available for the Santa Cruz Heckler SL. Riders can choose between the standard C carbon fiber or the more advanced CC carbon fiber construction for their Heckler SL.

What Is the Price Range for the Different Builds of the Heckler Sl?

The price range for the different builds of the Santa Cruz Heckler SL varies from a bit over $7000 to a bit over $12,000. This range provides options for riders with different budgets and preferences.

Can You Provide More Information About the New Category of Emtbs That the Heckler SL Falls Into?

The new category of eMTBs, exemplified by the Santa Cruz Heckler SL, combines the assistance of a mid-drive motor and a lightweight design to provide fit riders with help on climbs while still delivering the thrill of riding a regular mountain bike.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the Santa Cruz Heckler SL is a highly anticipated electric mountain bike that offers an exhilarating experience for competent and adventurous riders.

With its mullet design, advanced carbon fiber construction, and SRAM components, it caters to a wide range of riders.

The Heckler SL represents the exciting new category of eMTBs and showcases the future of electric mountain biking.

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