2014-nomadc-650b-2930With Sea Otter just around the corner, bike releases are coming thick and fast and none have got me more excited than Santa Cruz finally upping the wheel size on their venerable quiver killer, the Nomad. From the Nomad’s initial release back in the day (as the first 6″ bike you could spend all day in the saddle on) the Nomad has been the benchmark for heavy duty trail bikes and most were guessing it was just a matter of time before it got the medium wheel size upgrade. Well today is the day and it ain’t no April Fools Day joke. The new 165mm travel, VPP equipped NomadC is here!

For the keen-eyed mountain biker out and about recently, you may have even caught a glimpse of the new steed travelling between Rotorua and Christchurch. It was out here recently being tested by long-time Santa Cruz rider and trail builder Matt Thompson, and yes, we did go for a ride with Matt and we gave his bike a thorough going over. Unfortunately he wouldn’t let us ride it (he was under strict instructions not to) but watching him ride it was proof enough that this bike is dialled.

2014-nomadc-650b-2943There are quite a few changes from the last Nomad and a few changes from recent Santa Cruz carbon bikes the Bronson and 5010. Cable routing for the dropper now runs all the way from the headube (instead of at the base of the seat tube on the Bronson and 5010), the seat tube diameter has also changed to 31.6ø to accommodate RockShox’s 150mm drop Reverb Stealth post. The head angle is a slack 65 degrees while the seat tube has been steepened up to keep the top tube nice and short.


2014-nomadc-650b-2938The lower link on the Nomad has also had a full going over. In order to get the rear stays nice and short Santa Cruz have gone more in the direction of the v10’s compact lower linkage. I’m sure there are some other engineering benefits but I think it just looks plain sexy and there’s a frickin bottle cage at last!

2014-nomadc-650b-2946And on the topic of linkages, Santa Cruz have being making subtle changes over the last little while with their top linkage, going from carbon back to alloy recently, and you’ll see now that the alloy linkage has been trimmed down and hollowed out to create an even lighter system that doesn’t sacrifice strength.

_2947Santa Cruz’s launch of the 650b NomadC also serves as the launch date for Rock Shox’s most recent iteration of the the Monarch Plus, the Debonair. The Debonair-equipped Monarch Plus offers a more linear spring curve and requires lower force levels to move the shock into its travel, being that the first 1/3 of travel is what riders are most sensitive to. The pay-off is better traction and the rear wheel stays on the ground reacting to small bumps and there’s no chop on the initial hit.

2014-nomadc-650b-2931Oh, and if you want to run a front derailleur or purchase an alloy model, you best be buying another bike. The new NomadC is just that, a “C”. There will be no alloy options available and it’s not front derailleur compatible. This bike is 1x only!

nomad-3c-34-black nomad-3c-34-blue


Full Press Release from Santa Cruz below:

The new Nomad sends the all mountain category into Andean Mountain sized territory. Now in its third generation, the full carbon frame has been completely redesigned to stay ahead of enduro racing’s ever-more DH trajectory.

An aggressive 65 degree head angle delivers V10 handling at Syndicate speeds. We’ve also added a V10-style upper link, increased VPP travel to 165mm and improved small bump performance.

The one-by only design also permits a neatly recessed and protected lower link, resulting in some seriously compact chainstays. Match that with an inch more reach in the cockpit, and you’ve got the ideal set-up for tearing down the side of Chilean stratovolcanoes.!
The ground-up redesign incorporates a steeper seat tube angle, creating an efficient pedaling position for total liaison stage domination.!

And as ever with carbon technology, it’s what’s on the inside that counts. The internal cable routing is so trick it’s a shame it never sees the light of day. Thin carbon fibre tubes molded into the frame from entry to exit, ensuring completely integrated hassle-free routing every time.

All wrapped up in stealth black or aqua/magenta colors with coordinated fork and wheel decals, the new Nomad shows just how rad things can get with some single-ring-minded focus.!


• 165mm VPP suspension
• New compact lower link and V10-style upper link
• Full carbon frame and swingarm in S, M, L & XL sizes
• Single-chain-ring-only design
• Internal routing
• 27.5” wheels, with new carbon ENVE M70 option
• Frame weight from 6.2 lbs (2.8 kg)
• Complete from 27.1 lbs (12.3kg)!


• Internal routing made from molded carbon tubes: ensures precise and hassle free feeding of rear derailleur and seat post cables.
• 31.6” seat tube: accommodates 150mm Reverb Stealth seat posts.
• Bottle cage mounts within front triangle: works with piggyback shock
• Molded rubber swingarm and downtube protectors.
• Forged aluminum upper link and lower link.
• Single recessed grease port on lower link: feeds all for four bearings.
• Collet axle pivots: lock in place without pinch bolts.
• Angular contact bearings on collet pivot axles.
• Full carbon dropouts and disk mounts.
• Co-molded aluminum hardware on frame pivots.
• Carbon ISCG-05 tabs.
• 142 mm rear axle spacing.
• Threaded BB: creak-free riding and easy installation.


• 5 year warranty.
• Lifetime bearings and crash replacement warranty.

• Mid May for New Zealand

8 Responses

  1. I just bought this magenta beast last week and tested on some serious downhill. It doesn’t mess around. This bike was built by gods!

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