Gravel Grinder News: GT Bikes Announces New Grade Range – by Guitar Ted
Today GT Bikes announces its third generation Grade gravel bike range. The all-new, redesigned range features better tire clearances, evolved geometry, and better rear compliance then the previous Grade bikes did. Let’s take a closer look at the bikes which cover all price-points and are offered in aluminum and carbon fiber.
Carbon Grade Features: Overall, all the carbon Grade models will have some features which apply across the range. The frame design is new and will have integrated frame protection from the lower half of the down tube to cover the front of the bottom bracket shell. Gone is the externally routed cabling from the previous generation of the Grade Carbon. Now all cables are routed internally. Gone also is the press fit bottom bracket. The new frame features a threaded bottom bracket shell (Hooray!). Tire clearances are increased to 45mm w/fenders. The top tube hard mounts for an accessory bag and two water bottle mounts remain. There is now a revised and thicker attachment area for the seat stays ahead of the seat tube. This, of course, is GT’s famous “Triple Triangle” signature frame design, but it also allows for a claimed 30mm of “Gravel Travel” for the rear wheel due to built-in flex in the elongated seat stays.
Those seat stays feature low modulus, solid core, long strand glass fibers which are molded into an optimum shape to allow for lateral stability but still allow for vertical movement. This is wrapped in carbon fiber and GT calls the design “Dual Fiber Dynamics”. So, not only is the Triple Triangle design a visual cue, but a ride performance and comfort benefit to the rider. Those stays are connected now to the top tube in a longer, more robust way to help with stability.
Elsewhere the new carbon frame employs varying levels of “modulus” in the carbon fiber used. The head tube junction with the down tube and top tube uses a high modulus, (stiffer) carbon lay-up to provide better steering precision and structural strength where it counts. This same high modulus lay-up is employed at the junction of the chain stays with the bottom bracket to give the Carbon Grade better pedaling dynamics under power. A low modulus carbon lay-up is used in the middle of the top tube, seat tube, and in the seat stays for better compliance and this contributes to the “Gravel Travel” feature as well. A “mid-modulus” carbon is utilized everywhere else in the frame.
The seat tubes on the new Carbon Grade models were shortened compared to the previous Grade models to allow riders to utilize longer drop-travel posts while still maintaining room for frame bags and water bottles.
A new Grade Carbon Fork with increased tire clearance and triple accessory mounts on each leg is also featured across the Carbon range. The new fork does away with the offset altering “flip-chip”, however.
Aluminum GT Grade: The aluminum models are also new with revised geometry, the floating Triple Triangle seat stays, and both bikes in the range will feature the new Carbon Grade fork as well.
The aluminum range features two models, the Comp model and the Sport. The Comp Grade comes with GRX 400 10 speed components, WTB Riddler tires in 700 X 37mm size, and will be offered in Gloss Tan w/Black and Gloss Indigo w/Silver. The Sport model will feature a MicroShift drive train, the same WTB tires, and will be offered in Gloss Forest Green w/Silver and Gloss Wet Cement Grey w/Black.
Frame Set & Other Models: The Grade Carbon will also be offered in a frame/fork only set in an eye-catching Gloss Sea Green, Teal, and Aqua Camo. There are two upcoming Grade Carbon models but details are forthcoming on those. Expect the news on these two bikes to be released this Fall. The frame set will be available in late 2023/early 2024.
Prices & Spec: The carbon models we can talk about have SRAM components and Shimano GRX400 10 speed components. The first one on tap here is the Grade Carbon X, a front suspended model using SRAM’s Rudy fork and a 1X SRAM Apex 1 drive train. This bike will be offered in Gloss Battleship Grey w/Black and Teal. The bike also features a 50mm travel, Trans X dropper post. The prices are set at $4000.00USD, $5350.00CAN, £3000.00 UK, and €2399.00 Europe.
The next model we can share today is the Grade Carbon Elite which has the aforementioned GRX400 10 speed, GRX brakes, and 700 X 40mm WTB Vulpine tires. This bike comes in Gloss Wet Cement w/Black and will run $2500.00USD, $3350.00CAN, £2200.00 UK, and €2399.00 Europe.
We did not get a price on the Grade Carbon frame set.
Aluminum pricing will be as follows: For the Grade Comp – $1950.00USD, $2600.00CAN, £1450.00UK, and €1699.00Europe. GT Grade Sport – $1500.00USD, $2000.00CAN, £1100.00UK, and €1199.00Europe.
To reiterate, there will be two more additional Grade Carbon bike models to come. Any guesses as to what that might be about?
Learn more about this and other GT Bikes at their website here:
Note: All information and images used to make this article were provided to Riding Gravel by GT Bicycles. Any changes in spec, colors, pricing, etc from this information are the sole responsibility of GT Bicycles.