Full details on Atherton Bikes' new aluminum framed S.170 – the brand's most affordable enduro MTB yet

Atherton Bikes S.170
The Atherton Bikes S.170 is built with highly durable 7075 alloy (Image credit: Atherton BIkes)

Atherton Bikes teased us with a new addition to its highly successful mountain bike range back in January. The brand is celebrating five award-winning years of success, which includes Charlie Hatton's World Championship title, World Cup wins for Andi Kolb, and a return to the World Cup top step for Rachel Atherton. As part of the ongoing celebrations, the brand released a fairly secretive image of Dan Atherton at Dyfi Bike Park riding what appeared to be a prototype alloy version of its big mountain enduro MTB, and it had us guessing just what the latest model from Atherton Bikes would be...

The cat is now well out of the bag and we no longer need to speculate because the Atherton S.170 is here. The S.170 is a far more accessible range from a price point of view, in comparison to its carbon-framed siblings like the Atherton AM.170 starting at $7,355 / £6,950 / €6,776 and topping out at $8,678 / £8,200 / €7,995. 

Made entirely from aluminum it means the S.170 is a far more wallet-friendly model with builds starting at $5,119 / £4,799 / €4,679 and features all the sizing, strength and performance benefits the brand has learned over the five years of production. It also features the Atherton Bikes established preferences on geometry and ride feel with the same level of perfectionism found across the Atherton range built in Machynlleth, Wales

Unlike the A-Series (Additive) there is no custom option on the S.170 and it comes in three fixed builds (featured below) plus a frame-only option from the top-of-the-line featuring a RockShox RS Ultimate Coil shock and a SRAM X01 drivetrain to the lowest price model that has a RockShox Deluxe Select shock and SRAM GX spec. The frame-only choice also includes a Fox DHX2 coil shock, and I had a look over the other eye-catching features of the S.170.

Atherton Bikes S.170 ridden in woods

Like the A-Series the S.170 features a lug and tube construction (Image credit: Atherton BIkes)

Aluminum frame

The frame of the S.170 is the obvious starting point here and is made from Aluminum grade 7075 with CNC-manufactured lugs which brings a host of benefits to riders. Firstly, 7075 alloy has a superior fatigue strength, and Atherton Bikes says having seen many competitor frame failures at Dyfi Bike Park, using Aluminum grade 7075 was a huge deal. It's not typically used in bike manufacture, as it can’t be welded, but offers 70 percent higher fatigue performance and 70 percent higher ultimate tensile strength (UTS) than weldable alternatives such as 6061. The finish is also anodized to protect the tubes and lugs from corrosion.

The S.170's lug and tube construction also means it's optimized for strength, has greater impact durability and importantly a lower cost. Of course, there is a slight weight penalty compared to its carbon-framed siblings with the S.170 frame claimed to weigh in at 4.1kg without the shock, and as a comparison to the Atherton AM.170 which comes in at 3.5kg.

Utilizing the double lap joints the S.170 is bonded in a very similar way to the A-Series mountain bikes. It also means that they can continue to offer a wide range of sizing, and riders can easily use the online fit calculator to choose the perfect size from 12 different options.

Atherton Bikes S.170 side on view details

The frame's raw alloy finish is anodized for extra protection and durability (Image credit: Atherton BIkes)

Shared geometry

The S range benefits from all the learnings to date on geometry and the DW suspension platform. Combined with four years of racing and feedback from customers. It has a mixed wheel (mullet) configuration and 170mm rear travel with 180mm upfront and shares a similar geometry to the AM.170. Dave Weagle’s DW6 suspension platform gives way to a simpler DW4 version which offers the same top-notch performance as DW6 but Atherton says is simpler and easy to maintain. 

The head angle is 63.6 degrees and the seat tube angle varies between sizes and is from 76.6 and 78.6, as do the chainstay lengths from 430mm to 440mm. The reach starts at 405mm going up to 515mm in 10mm increments over the 12 sizes available.

View of the DW4 suspension platform on the Atherton Bikes S.170

The S.170 has a a simpler DW4 suspension platform which is simpler and easier to maintain (Image credit: Atherton BIkes)

Pricing, availability and specification

The Atherton S.170 is available to order directly from Atherton Bikes, initially in limited numbers. The brand says that production numbers will be low for at least the first three months while production capacity increases.

Frameset only with Fox DHX2 Coil shock is priced at $2,985 / £2,799 / €2,729 and it's worth noting that US and EU prices do not include tax and shipping which is still TBC.

The three full build prices are as follows: Build One featuring SRAM X01 Eagle and RockShox suspension is $6,399 / £5,999 / €5,849. Build Two with SRAM GX gears and Fox suspension is $5,865 / £5,499 / €5,359, and finally, Build Three with SRAM GX gears and RockShox suspension is $5,119 / £4,799 / €4,679. Again, US and EU prices do not include tax and shipping.

For full details, visit Athertonbikes.com.

S.170 Build One

Atherton S.170 side on view

The top spec build has SRAM X01 Eagle gearing (Image credit: Atherton Bikes)
  • Frame: Atherton S.170 Aluminum 7075
  • Fork: FS Zeb Ultimate Charger 2.1 RC2, 180mm
  • Shock: RS Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate, 170mm
  • Rear Derailleur: SRAM X01 Eagle, 12spd
  • Shifters: SRAM X01 Eagle
  • Bar: FSA Gradient, Alloy
  • Crankset: SRAM GX Eagle
  • Seatpost: Fox Transfer P-SE 
  • Saddle: Prologo Nembo 145 Cromo
  • Brakes: Hayes Dominion
  • Wheels: Stans Flow EX3
  • Tires: Continental Kryptotal
  • Color: Raw Aluminum
  • Sizes: 12
  • Price: $6,399 / £5,999 / €5,849 ($ and € exc Tax and Shipping TBC)

S.170 Build Two

Atherton S.170 side on view

Build Two features Fox suspension (Image credit: Atherton Bikes)
  • Frame: Atherton S.170 Aluminum 7075
  • Fork: Fox 38 Performance, 180mm
  • Shock: Fox Float X Performance, 170mm
  • Rear Derailleur: SRAM GX Eagle, 12spd
  • Shifters: SRAM GX Eagle
  • Bar: FSA Gradient, Alloy
  • Crankset: SRAM GX Eagle
  • Seatpost: Fox Transfer P-SE 
  • Saddle: Prologo Nembo 145 Cromo
  • Brakes: Hayes Dominion
  • Wheels: Stans Flow S2
  • Tires: Continental Kryptotal
  • Color: Raw Aluminum
  • Sizes: 12 
  • Price: $5,865 / £5,499 / €5,359 ($ and € exc Tax and Shipping TBC)

S.170 Build Three

Atherton S.170 side on view

Build Three has SRAM gearing and RockShox suspension (Image credit: Atherton Bikes)
  • Frame: Atherton S.170 Aluminum 7075
  • Fork: RS Domain R, 180mm
  • Shock: RS Deluxe Select, 170mm
  • Rear Derailleur: SRAM GX Eagle, 12spd
  • Shifters: SRAM GX Eagle
  • Bar: FSA Comet, Alloy
  • Crankset: SRAM NX Eagle
  • Seatpost: Fox Transfer P-SE 
  • Saddle: Prologo Nembo 145 Cromo
  • Brakes: Hayes Dominion
  • Wheels: Stans Flow S2
  • Tires: Continental Kryptotal
  • Color: Raw Aluminum
  • Sizes: 12
  • Price: $5,119 / £4,799 / €4,679 ($ and € exc Tax and Shipping TBC)
Paul Brett
Staff writer

Paul Brett is a staff writer for BikePerfect.com. He has been an avid cyclist for as long as he can remember, initially catching the mountain biking bug in the 1990s, and raced mountain bikes for over a decade before injury cut short a glittering career. He’s since developed an obsession for gravel riding and recently has dabbled in the dark art of cyclocross. A fan of the idea of bikepacking he has occasionally got involved and has ridden routes like the North Coast 500, Scotland and the Via Francigena (Pilgrim Route), Italy.

Current rides: Marin Alpine Trail 2, Ribble 725, Cube Stereo 160

Height: 175cm