Sanny checks out the latest release from Canyon: the Canyon Neuron AL, an update to their best selling full suspension bike.
Another day, another bike to test. Last time around, I shared with you my thoughts about Canyon’s latest gnarpoon ebike, the Spectral:ON. Fair to say, I was suitably impressed. It managed that rare feat of handling like a normal bike and had a neutral ride quality that meant that anyone could ride it. However, jump forward to day two of Canyon’s Press Camp just outside Barcelona and I was faced with an entirely different proposition, a 130 mm front and back, alloy, 29er full suspension bike. No motor, no help up the climbs, it was back to the old ways. After positively wafting up the climbs on an ebike the day before, I would be lying if I was to say that I was relishing the thought of doing those same climbs under normal power. But more of that later. For now, let me tell you about the Canyon Neuron AL.
Canyon Neuron AL
- Size tested: Large
- Price: 2,199 Euros
- From: Canyon.com
As seems to be the case with every bike Canyon brings out, there is a clear mission statement that each bike built is designed around. In the case of the Neuron AL, the goal was to create what Canyon considers to be the ultimate all-rounder: a bike that is both versatile and reliable and which works for every type of mountain bike rider. It is not intended to be a super aggressive short travel trail slayer. There are other bikes for that. Rather, Canyon reckons that the Neuron AL offers punchy acceleration coupled with an all-round capability that can handle both steep climbs and technical descents. Back in the day, we would just call that a mountain bike, but technology has moved on a lot in the last few years. Not so long ago, 130mm travel on a 29er was practically unheard of but now it doesn’t even warrant a Roger Moore eyebrow raise.
What’s New for the Canyon Neuron AL?
In design terms, Canyon has made a lot of changes to improve upon the existing aluminium framed model which is already their best-selling full suspension trail bike. But where to start? Well the main pivot has been widened and extra bearing seals added which should make for improved bearing life.
Cable routing has been updated in order to minimise bending in the outer which should help keep rear shifting running smoother for longer. Cable routing is now fully internal too. Canyon has retained the horizontal shock position as they believe it increases bearing life by being under less strain. Running from 2XS up to XL, the smallest three frames run 27.5 wheels while M to XL go full 29 front and rear. Bars, stem, dropper and crank size vary by frame size, recognising that one size does not fit all. Other design features of note are the inclusion of Canyon’s Quixle rear axle, a neat solution that eliminates vulnerable exposed levers, an in-built chainstay protector and space for a full size bottle and cage.
Adopting Canyon’s Triple Phase suspension design, the Canyon Neuron AL claims to offer small bump sensitivity in the first third of travel, stability for a poppy feel in the middle of the range and progressive in the final third in order to cope with big hits. All in all, there is a lot going on so I was keen to see whether the reality matched up with the fanfare.
For the purposes of the test, I got to try the top of the range Neuron AL 7.0 which comes in at the princely sum of 2,199 Euros. The spec isn’t top end, but a sensible mix of kit designed to not break the bank. I may have to take a moment here to reflect on that. 2,199 Euros for a mountain bike is still a lot of money in the eyes of the general public but when compared to the growing slew of eye wateringly expensive ebikes which cost well in excess of ten grand, it doesn’t seem quite so much.
The drivetrain is a mix of SRAM NX shifter and GX Eagle 1 x 12 rear mech mated to a 30T front ring while wheels are Shimano MT 400 and MT 510 hubs mated with Race Face rims. The cassette is a SRAM PG1230.
Braking is taken care of by Shimano’s MT 400/420 series brakes meaning reach adjustment is done by Allen key as opposed to the simplicity of spinning a small wheel. Tyres are Continental Mountain King III in a 2.3 width. Rounding things off are Canyon’s own brand Iridium Dropper and stem matched with an alloy riser handlebar. The saddle is a Selle Italia X Base. Initial impressions of it were less than favourable but by the end of the ride, I wasn’t noticing it so that is a good sign.
Looks wise, my bike came in matt black with silver detailing and in my view gave the bike an understated but classy appearance. Suspension duties were handled by a Fox 34 Float Rhythm fork and a Fox Float Performance DPS shock at the back. For those of you who like numbers, stack is 624mm, reach is 453mm, head angle is 67.5 degrees and seat angle is 74.5 degrees. Wheelbase is 1191mm.
Riding the Canyon Neuron AL 7.0
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Sanny’s travel and accommodation were covered by Canyon.
|Product:||Neuron Al 7.0|
|Tested:||by Sanny for 1 long day in Spain.|