First Look: Mavic Crossmax XL WTS - An Enduro Adventure

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<b>When Michel Lethenet, Mavic Press Officer and shredder-at-large asked if we would join him in the South of France to test some new gear over parts of the Trans-Provence route, we knew we were in for a treat.</b>
<b>Mr. Enduro Jerome Clementz joined us for the trip, and true to himself, he was hard on his gear and easy on the eye!</b>
<b>Not the worst way to start an adventure. Our itinerary took us from Casterino to Menton over two days of riding, along some rarely traveled single track as well as the last 4 stages of the 2013 edition of the Trans-Provence.</b>
<b>The Mavic Crossmax XL Wheel Tire System - developed for a broader range of conditions and riders than the Crossmax Enduro WTS that was introduced in 2013. Available in 26", 27.5", and 29" versions, it will hit shops mid-June.</b>
<b>Jerome Clementz's Cannondale Jekyll looking stealthy with the new Crossmax XL WTS. What better way to find out if the new wheels are ready to rumble than to send them out in rough terrain with one of the world's fastest racers?</b>
<b>Ash Smith, Mr. Trans-Provence himself selected an epic route for the journalist posse to tackle, and was a most gracious host and guide for the duration of the trip. Holding his wheel is not all that easy!</b>
<b>Featuring 23mm internal width front and rear (compared to 19/21mm on the Crossmax Enduro), and with a higher spoke count, Mavic rose to the challenge of keeping the weight of the new Crossmax XL identical to the Enduro.</b>
<b>Interspoke milling is just one of many ways to shave grams off a wheelset. Mavic didn't miss a trick when designing the new Crossmax XL.</b>
<b>The hubs are "standard" Mavic issue, but more compact than previous versions. The silver finish is particularly flattering, and overall the wheelset is one pretty package. Regarding the "Carbon Question", Mavic still feels that the price-to-performance ratio of carbon rims is not yet where it needs to be, hence they are sticking with alloy.</b>
<b>We all tried our best to keep Jerome Clementz in sight, but you don't become Enduro World Champion just because you're a BIT fast...</b>
<b>Mavic has been in the wheel game for a long time, and their know-how and trackrecord are without a doubt right up there with the very best. The Crossmax XL is a refined product that honored its heritage over two days of very rough conditions.</b>
<b>Isopulse lacing, Zicral aluminum flatblade spokes, ITS-4 freewheel, interspoke milling, compact hubs, airtight rims...the new wheelset has technology to spare and it puts it all to good use.</b>
<b>Day 2 of our adventure saw us take on the 4 stages of day 6 of the 2013 Trans-Provence route, from Sospel to Menton. It's hard to imagine a better setting for testing new kit. The new wheels took a beating and came back for more.</b>
<b>French mountain villages seem able to defy both gravity and the passage of time itself. This one features possibly the best view in the world, although it comes up a bit short on the bar count.</b>
<b>The Trans-Provence route is not for the faint of heart. The climbing is every bit as epic as the views and the singletrack, and some of the passes are reachable only under your own power.</b>
<b>Thankfully, the Trans-Provence team was on hand to provide a little shuttle relief - they were happy about the low weight of the Crossmax XL's too! $1,000 for a wheelset is not cheap, but that includes the tires and all the adapters you could need, as well as a UST rim that does not need a rimstrip - and the performance seems to justify the pricetag.</b>
<b>Impossible to stay tired with resting spots like this one. #epicisonlyhalfthestory</b>
<b>The new Crossmax Quest tire. 2.4" wide (2.35" for the 29er version), higher volume, less aggressive knob pattern for a less exclusive feel, all in a lighter package.</b>
<b>We were skeptical regarding the single-ply tire's ability to withstand a couple of days of heavy testing over rough terrain under a world champion and a dozen of eager journalists, but we needn't have worried. 3 flats over two days across the whole group, one of which was caused by a sharp metal object that would have ruined any tire is a more than decent score for an 800 gram tire. </b>
<b>The Crossmax Quest is predictable and quite grippy - we'll need more time to really weigh in. We wondered if the transition knobs would bother us, as they can sometimes cause a tire to feel a bit vague when transitioning onto the side knobs, but that was not the case here. The side knobs are taller and come into play early.</b>
<b>Added Guard+ puncture protection means lower weight than 2-ply while maintaining a high level of puncture resistance. Staircases beware.</b>
<b>Come race time, Jerome Clementz will be back on the Crossmax Enduro WTS, but he was certainly not holding back on the Crossmax XL's.</b>
<b>The fruit of a collaboration with Salomon, the new Crossmax Hydropack is meant to be the perfect companion for the activity also known as mountain biking. Loaded with features, it provides easy storage in a compact and lightweight package - we'll be bringing you our detailed findings in a future review.</b>
<b>Available in both 8L and 15L size, the Crossmax Hydropack is ready for all the acrobatics you can throw at it. We particularly appreciate the ease of access to the many front pockets, as well as the stability on the back. It looks awesome too!</b>
<b>The Crossmax XL pedal - wider platform, mud-shedding design, and the perfect companion for the Mavic Alpine XL shoe. - photo MavicSAS/Jeremie Reuiller</b>
<b>Menton - this is where the Trans-Provence route ends. Just a few more stairs... - photo MavicSAS/Jeremie Reuiller</b>
<b>...and the crew could smell the beers and a little well-earned rest for the legs. #rivieradreams</b>
<b>Michel Lethenet came prepared for a little beach R&R.</b>
<b>Majestic and unrelenting - the French Alps in all their pre-summer glory. #earnit</b>
<b>Some things change, some never do. #thefrench</b>
Intro Graphic
First Look Intrographic Mavic

We went on an epic Enduro adventure with Mavic in the South of France to put the all-new Crossmax XL Wheel Tire System as well as the Crossmax line of apparel and accessories to the test. Check out the new goods in action in the slideshow above, then geek out over the specs below.

Crossmax XL Wheels

The Crossmax XL Wheel is designed for the adventurers. Strong enough to support aggressive riding, it remains light where it really matters. Featuring Mavic’s proven technologies (Fore, Zicral, UST...) it was designed to work with the new Crossmax Quest tyres, versatile and strong. Available in 26”, 27.5” and 29”.

  • 23 mm wide rim with Fore drilling
  • New optimized rim extrusion with ISM weight reduction
  • Zicral aluminum spokes, lighter and stronger than steel
  • Full UST rim
  • Full “Enduro” hub compatibility: 9/15/20 up front and 9/12x135/142 rear
  • XD driver option available
  • Weight 26”: 1660 g (pair), 790 g (front), 870 g (rear)
  • Weight 27.5”: 1710 g (pair) 815 g (front), 895 g (rear)
  • Weight 29”: 1780 g (pair), 850 g (front), 930 g (rear)
  • Price: $1000 USD (wheels + tires)

Crossmax Quest Tires

The perfect tire for Enduro riding. Versatile design for excellent braking, cornering and traction. CC rubber for grip and durability and Guard+ construction for the best balance of protection and weight. Available in 26”, 27.5” and 29”.

  • Contact Compound (CC): grip in all condition and durability
  • High spaced knobs for traction, predictable braking and precise cornering
  • Large volume for comfort and confidence
  • Large 2.4 casing for better comfort (2.35 in 29" version)
  • Guard+: reinforced casing
  • UST Tubeless Ready: reduced risk of flats
  • Weight 26”:  690 g
  • Weight 27.5”: 780 g
  • Weight 29”: 810 g
  • Price: $70 USD per tire

Crossmax Hydropack 15

Optimal freedom of movement thanks to second skin construction, it allows you to carry everything you need for a long ride. Smart hydropack bag with easy access to front pockets, developed and endorsed by Mavic pro riders.

  • Clima Flow backpanel contruction
  • Material: 420D Ripstop
  • Cargo capacity: 15 L
  • 4 front zipped pockets integrated on straps
  • Adjustable belt with pockets
  • Adjustable sternum strap
  • Backlight clip
  • Delivered with 3L hydration bladder
  • Padded belt with large buckle
  • Pocket for cell phone
  • Roll-out helmet flap
  • Separate hydration compartment
  • Separate tool compartment with dividers and zippered internal pockets
  • Price: $150 USD

Crossmax Apparel

Crossmax Long Sleeve Jersey

Developed with the world’s fastest Enduro athletes (Jérôme Clementz, Fabien Barel and Anne-Caroline Chausson) the tough and dynamic CrossMax LS jersey allows optimal freedom of movement, comfort and breathability to maximize the Enduro experience.

  • Trail Wick fabric provides light protection, high breathability and increased abrasion protection
  • 100% polyester
  • Looser cut for ease of movement on your bike
  • Wearable with elbow and back protection
  • New Crossmax high visibility graphics
  • Large choice of color options (green/black, blue/red, yellow/black)
  • V-neck collar
  • Sizes: S / M / L / XL / XXL
  • Price: $80 USD

Crossmax Short

Full-length short (and removable chamois/liner) with Trail Tech ST fabric that provides very strong abrasion resistance without reducing comfort.

  • Upgraded Ergo 2D Insert offers comfort, support and moisture management from 2 densities and 2 different thicknesses of perforated foam
  • Trail Tech ST provides lightweight protection, comfort and increased range of movement
  • Mesh inserts increase air cooling
  • Body: 90% Polyester, 10% Elastan
  • Lining insert: 80% Polyamid, 20% Elastan
  • Lining: 89% Polyester / 11% Elastan
  • Delivered with removable inner short
  • Inseam length: 36 cm/14 inches
  • Inside silicone leg grip
  • Mesh inserts
  • 2 zipped front pockets + 1 zipped rear pocket
  • 2 open front pockets
  • Available in green or black
  • Sizes: S / M / L / XL / XXL
  • Price: $120 USD

Crossmax Glove

Pre-shaped cut glove with excellent grip and abrasion resistance. Silicone Finger Grip and close fitting to increase ability and control.

  • Ergo Cut / Finger Grip / Micro Vent
  • Cuff tab for adjustable width / Washable
  • Colors: Green/Black, Blue/Red, Black
  • Sizes:XS / S / M / L / XL / 2XL
  • Price: $50 USD

Crossmax XL Pedal

The XL’s large body offers stability and inspires confidence. Tough and lightweight construction thanks to a new design, the all-new XL is a good choice for All-mountain and Enduro riding. With its carbon body, the Crossmax XL is also an efficient Enduro race pedal.

  • Oversized hollow axle, carbon body
  • Impact resistant dual spring construction
  • New and lighter large body design
  • Bio performance: ±2.5 mm lateral and ±5° angular float
  • ATAC: engagement and release independent of spring tension, 13° or 17° release angles
  • Self Cleaning: patented design offers perfect mud evacuation for easy clip-in in all conditions
  • Axle material: steel, hollow, 12 mm / Bearing: sealed cartridge bearing / Body material: carbon / Mechanism: ATAC / Spring: dual arch, dual spring
  • Weight: 385 g
  • Price: $250 USD

For more information, head on over to:

Photos and Feature by Johan Hjord, unless otherwise noted.


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