Yes it's time for the new bike models to come out and yes we just happened to be in Bellingham WA and decided to demo one of the 2018 models with their new Speed Balanced Geometry (or SBG) and of course their famous Giddy Up suspension. Recently we demoed the 2017 Patrol carbon on the trails up in Bellingham and loved everything about it. You can read our review of the Patrol here.

2018 Transition Scout
Reviewed by Jim Bernstein

Review Date: 02/16/2018
Product Rating
4 Star Rating: Recommended
2018 brings a new chapter to the Transition lineup with the above mentioned SBG and even the release of the new Sentinel model with 160mm of front travel, 64 degree head tube angle running on 29 inch wheels. But we are not here to talk about the Sentinel but rather the Scout which has been in the lineup for a while now but is new and improved for 2018. The biggest improvement is the SBG but it also has a little more travel front and rear to take a little more punishment. It has gone from a 140 front/125 rear to a 150 front/130 rear travel bike and comes with the SRAM Eagle drivetrain for the top 2 build levels. The bottom level bike comes with the SRAM PG 1130 11 speed configuration. That extra gear came in handy while pedaling a 32 lb. large size up the hills. We got the top end X01 build to test out.

There are other differences between the models such as a Fox 36 Float Fit 4 Performance Elite fork for the XO model, a RockShox Pike RC Solo Air fork for the GX model and a RockShox Revelation RC Solo Air fork for the NX model. The top 2 builds come with a Fox DPX2 Performance Elite rear shock while the NX comes with a RockShox Deluxe RT shock. All 3 builds come with different levels of SRAM brakes but we have always been more of a fan of Shimano brakes but the SRAM did the job without any noise, at least for now. To roll on the XO comes with E*Thirteen TRS+ wheels, the GX comes with E*Thirteen TRS and the NX comes with WTB STPi29. For pricing you can get the XO for $4,999, the GX for $3,999 or the NX for $2,999 for aluminum frames. We asked about carbon in the future and they said most likely so hopefully that means definitely! You can pick up just the frame and rear shock for $1,999.

Here you can see all the technical details if you are a numbers kind of person.

2018 Transition Scount

As for performance we took it out to the local trails on Galbraith Mountain and did the north side which is more natural than the south side with its manmade jumps. It was a cold and wet day with a little snow still on the mountain so things were kind of sloppy but not too bad. The Scout climbed fairly well but you could feel the 32 pounds even when using the granny 50t gear on the chainring but it wasn't too bad getting up the mountain. The carbon Patrol from the previous demo climbed better but we attribute that to the weight difference which is about 3-4 pounds. With the heavier weight and the 65 degree head tube angle it kind of felt like you were riding a downhill bike up the hill but you knew it was going to be just fine going down when you made it to the top. We are thinking the carbon version will be a world of difference on the climbs.

Now for the fun part, descending. The slick conditions took away from the fun a little but the Scout still knows how to go downhill. The handling was great, the confidence level was high and the head tube angle felt just right. Transition always takes the time to dial in the suspension settings when you demo their bikes but we still felt it should be a little more plush on the rocks and roots. The RockShox Lyrik on the 2017 Patrol felt better on the bumps. Maybe more speed would have helped that out since it was summertime during the Patrol demo and that calls for faster runs unless you are a Washington local then it doesn't really matter.

Overall the Transition Scout is a great bike and we plan on testing it again on our local trails to get a real feel for how it performs compared to the bikes we are used to riding to see if it will be a future purchase. I think if a carbon model comes out it will be a done deal!

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