Marin Gestalt X11
If you’re built for the long haul, or want a bike to serve as both your adventure steed and daily commuter, the Marin Gestalt is built for you. You know the type: You’re not going to sprint for a town-line sign; you’d only rarely hit a gravel group ride. This is the bike for the person who doesn’t stick to roads, wants to commute regardless of the weather, and opts for the less-traveled detour on his way home.
The 6066/6061 aluminum frame offers a tapered head tube, internal cable routing, and 142×12-millimeter Naild locking quick release thru axles. Marin’s so-called “beyond road” geometry puts you in a more upright riding position, with its 170-millimeter (size 56cm) head tube length, 599.2-millimeter stack, and 1,004-millimeter wheelbase. Coupled with a 72.5-degree head tube angle, there’s a bit of the classic wheel flop at slower speeds. But all in all, the bike is stable, and there isn’t as much sluggishness as you might imagine from a bike of its kind. That being said, you’ll notice the weight of the bike when the gradient kicks up.
This isn’t the bike to buy if you like ripping through trails in the nearby state park. This is the bike to buy for gravel grinders comprising straight roads and lonely moments. The geometry provides for the stable, straight-line platform that is suited to long hours in the saddle.
Adding to the Gestalt’s versatility, the frame offers fender and rack mounts. Knowing that you can take this from the long haul on weekends to more urban pursuits during the work week makes it all the more attractive for the budget-conscious commuter. One thing to note: The frame and fork only have enough clearance to accommodate up to 35-millimeter tires. It sure would be nice to have a bit more clearance, especially since that figure will drop when fenders are installed.
The Gestalt’s spec is in line with its price point, offering a practical mix of proprietary aluminum parts (wheels, handlebar, stem, and seat post) and SRAM’s Apex 1×11-speed drivetrain. The FSA 42-tooth Gossamer Pro crankset is paired with a SRAM 10-42 cassette to provide the breadth of gear ratios for your excursions.
At $2,100, you get all the bike you need to tackle your next adventure.
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