Santa Cruz Bicycles launch fifth-generation Nomad

Santa Cruz Nomad
(Image credit: Santa Cruz Bicycles)

Santa Cruz Bicycles has launched an updated edition of the Nomad, a long-travel bike designed for aggressive riding. 

The Nomad has been in Santa Cruz’s range since 2005 and has undergone various redesigns over the years. The new fifth-generation model offers 170mm of Virtual Pivot Point suspension and 27.5-inch wheels. The bike is designed to be able to tackle a variety of rowdy terrain, from steep enduro trails to bike park laps and freeride hits. 

A 64-degree head angle and 77-degree seat angle allow for aggressive descending, while also providing a pedal platform to get riders back up the mountain.

Santa Cruz offers the bike in both Carbon C and Carbon CC frame construction options with a variety of build kits. Santa Cruz’s Carbon C material is cheaper than CC, and slightly heavier. The bike is not offered in an alloy option. Riders can choose from two color options, and the frame is compatible with both coil and air shocks. 

As is standard on Santa Cruz bikes, all models come with Maxxis tires; in this case the Nomad features an Assegai in the front and a Minion DHR II in the rear. 

The bike is offered in sizes S-XL, which provide reach figures ranging from 425mm to 500mm. The chainstay size is also proportional to the frame size, which leads to consistent geometry throughout the size range.

The Nomad can be seen as a cousin to the Santa Cruz Megatower, a long-travel 29er designed more for enduro racing. It would make for a good choice for riders who feel at home on the toughest descents but don’t want a full-on downhill bike. 

Build kits start at $4,499 for a bike equipped with a RockShox suspension, SRAM Guide RE brakes and SRAM NX Eagle components. The top-tier model features Fox Factory suspension, SRAM Code brakes and a SRAM X01 Eagle drivetrain for $7,499. 

Ryan Simonovich

Ryan Simonovich has been riding and racing for nearly a decade. He got his start as a cross-country mountain bike racer in California, where he cultivated his love for riding all types of bikes. Ryan eventually gravitated toward enduro and downhill racing but has also been found in the occasional road and cyclo-cross events. Today, he regularly rides the trails of Durango, Colorado, and is aiming to make a career out of chronicling the sport of cycling. 

Rides: Santa Cruz Hightower, Specialized Tarmac SL4