Core Bike 2012: Yeti (old and new)

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Although the majority of its bikes are now made in the Far East, Colorado company Yeti still has a great amount of heritage in its ‘Made in the USA’ roots. In fact, many of the prototypes and some of the smaller runs of bikes (like the 4X) are still made in Golden, Colorado. The company shuts for 90 minutes every lunchtime for a near-mandatory lunchtime ride and Yeti pays over the odds for its workshop space purely for the access out the door to some great trails… With some pretty groundbreaking technology (like its Rail technology and the new Switch suspension) it’s also leading the high-tech charge of all-mountain carbon and aluminium frames too.


Top of the shop here is the Yeti Arc hardtail. Still with the looped stays, but now with a really nice variation on the classic Yeti turquoise and white scheme.


Big Top - here's the 29er hardtail in all new stealth black. It's not going to be long before we see one in carbon we reckon.


In a surprising move to more chunkiness, the 575 will now come with an aluminium rather than carbon back end. This will drop the price though!


A very popular bike at the show was this SB-66C - the carbon version of the SB66. It's shipping in five weeks and it's 1.5lb lighter than the ally one. £2599 if you're keen.



See our previous story on the full lowdown on the SB-66

Small run bikes like this gorgeous 4X bike are still made in Colorado. £1399


The SB-95. It's like an SB-66, only for those big wheels.


Here's the 303WC - now 'only' 9lbs, still uses a linear rail, plus a pivot. Look for the team to be racing carbon ones soon!

 Retro Alert : Retro Alert!

Here’s Frank the Welders’ personal Yeti Ultimate. It was one of the first ones ever made and was also the test-ground for the ATac stem and Bullseye cranks too, which Frank was also involved with…


Your bike wasn't cool in 1992 without a pair of these...


Retro frenzy! Oh, just Chipps then...




And now this bike isn’t actually Tomac’s, but it’s as close as you’ll ever get. It’s a C-26 carbon and aluminium frame – one of only a handful ever made, and it has a painstaking retro build to reproduce Tomac’s 1990’s World Champs bike, including period-correct Dura Ace shifters (Tomac was a road pro that year too!)








Singletrack Editor

Chipps wasn’t around for the dawn of mountain biking in the UK, but he likes to claim that he arrived in time for second breakfast (about the time he shows up for work, then…) starting in the bike trade in 1990 and becoming a full time mountain bike journalist at the start of 1994. Over the subsequent quarter century, he has seen mountain bike culture flourish and diversify and bike technology go from rigid steel frames to fully suspended carbon fibre (and sometimes back to rigid steel as well.)

His riding style is best described as ‘medium, wheels on the ground, trail riding’ though he’s been spotted doing everything from endurance downhill racing to 24 hour cross country racing. He favours mid-travel trail bikes and claims to be wheel-size, gear, brake and tyre agnostic. In fact, his garage spans most bicycle flavours, taking in steel hardtails, carbon trail bikes, even a mountain bike tandem, along with road, touring and gravel/cyclocross bikes.

While he’s happy to chat about bikes all day, his real interest is in the people and places that bikes can introduce you to and he talks as fondly about the trails he’s ridden and riders he’s met as the bikes that took him there.

Comments (6)

    Aluminium flex stays on the 575? Hmmmm…

    Love the Yeti Ultimate but prefer the subtlety of the old school steel FRO PRO in black – mate had one with Bullseyes that was the epitome of cool.

    The coolest man in motorcycle racing Giovanni Bussei has an Ultimate as his pit bike

    Story here –

    Lovely bikes. That Yeti Ultimate was my dream bike once. Still looks pretty awesome if you ask me.

    Your bike wasn’t cool in 1992 without a pair of these…

    Onza purple bar ends, Thumbies, or white porcupines? All three of course….

    Those porcupines look like they have a few miles left in them, maybe a couple of hundred if you’re lucky. And to think they were the tyres to go for if you were downhilling, all 1.95″ of them.

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