Santa Cruz gives the Heckler an early refresh with new EP8 motor options and a mullet MX build available for 2021.
We see fresh updates of young products all the time in the tech industry and as tech and mountain bikes become further entwined we’re starting to see early cycling updates too. The Santa Cruz Heckler eMTB was only launched in February of this year, but even with a pandemic and 2 lockdowns, there has been enough innovation and change in 8 months for a refresh to go on sale.
For starters, the standard Heckler is now 310g lighter thanks to the new Shimano EP8 motor that hangs beneath the VPP suspension platform. The ‘New’ Heckler comes in the same colour options as the previous E8000 equipped bike, rolls on 27.5in wheels and has 160mm of travel up front and 150mm in the rear.
Santa Cruz Heckler MX
The Heckler MX though is a different beast. As far as we can tell it shares the same carbon front triangle as the current Heckler, but has a tweaked lower linkage allowing the bike to be built in mullet fashion. With a 29in wheel on the front and a 27.5in on the rear, Santa Cruz claims the MX is more nimble and eager to change direction but the changes do mean a reduction in travel. The Heckler MX has just 140mm of travel front and rear.
Like the new 27.5in Heckler the MX also benefits from a Shimano EP8 motor system update which brings with it less weight, a more compact design, a 36% reduction in drag and access to all those new tuning opportunities thanks to the updated software and application.
Reading through the specifications though, we see that both the 2021 Heckler and Heckler MX come with a smaller 504Wh Shimano battery, whereas other EP8 equipped bikes tend to boast an increase in battery power too. We’re unsure why this is the case, but we assume it has something to do with clearance. On the plus side, this does mean your Heckler will benefit from a little less weight which even on an eBike is no bad thing.
Both Hecklers are built with CC carbon frames, and some of the flashiest components money can buy so it’s hardly surprising to see prices range from £6399 rising to £9999.
2021 Santa Cruz Heckler Pricing
- Heckler/Heckler MX CC R – £6399
- Heckler/Heckler MX CC S – £7699
- Heckler/Heckler MX CC XT – £8299
- Heckler/Heckler MX CC X01 RSV – £9999
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Was hoping SC were going to push on with their ebike, but this isn’t really doing much, basically just a re-motor, without any added battery or tech, wonder why they haven’t pushed the battery capacity, or aimed a budget model in the range as the reality is for an ebike having the top spec carbon frame isn’t getting you the best VfM.