Bicycling (South Africa)
SANTA CRUZ BLUR
There have been various iterations of Santa Cruz’s Blur model between 2002 and 2014, when the last model was released. (In fact, you can still see the full lineage on an archive section of Santa Cruz’s website.)
Come 2018, and the Blur returns as a sleeker, racier and generally more XC-refined machine: the Blur 3. The frame also snuck in a debut at the Cape Epic as an early production model, and lived to tell the tale.
Two colour options are on offer: a stealth-bomber-like matte carbon, and a refreshing ‘sunset’ red. A waterbottle mount under the downtube is a bit unusual, but the frame still has clean lines without relying on a flashy paint job. But the paint job and graphics are high quality, with an exceptionally good finish.
As one of the foundation models, the Blur makes use of the VPP linkage in a one-piece rear triangle – widely regarded as the most efficient pedalling design around. The slack-ish 69° head angle lends itself to more confident trail bombing, while full SRAM Eagle XX, 100mm Fox Factory suspension and Santa Cruz’s carbon Reserve wheelset complete a solid package. It’s a dedicated endurance and cross-country bike with a modern twist. SPEC HIGHLIGHTS: Reserve carbon wheelset, VPP rear suspension design, lifetime wheel, frame and bearing warranty.
BOTTOM LINE: Locked and loaded for hardcore cross-country use, with dropper-post compatibility and a lifetime warranty on major parts, the Blur steps up as a flagship race machine.