Rad, red Maverick joins Juliana, and Santa Cruz Hightower gets an update

Bike News

There’s a new bike in the Juliana mountain bike line-up. It’s a long-travel 29er trail bike with 140mm rear travel, 150mm fork travel, a low shock position, up-to-date geometry, a flip-chip and a bad-ass red paintjob, and she’s called the Maverick.

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Juliana Bicycles, sister brand to Santa Cruz, has been growing every year since it launched as its own entity in 2013. This is the second bike announced for 2020 after news of its new adventure/gravel bike, the Quincy, back in May.

Aoife Glass riding the Juliana Maverick women's mountain bike in Colorado
While it’s a good climber, this is a bike that feels like it’s aching to go downhill, and on rough terrain too
Juliana Bicycles

Built for aggressive riding, the Maverick satisfies the needs of enduro riders who prefer big wheels to 27.5, and is essentially the 29er equivalent of the Roubion.

And since Juliana and Santa Cruz bicycles share frames, and the Maverick is the Juliana version of the Hightower, what this also tells you is that the Hightower has had a serious update too.

New Juliana Maverick and Santa Cruz Hightower key points

  • New lower shock position
  • Slacker head angle, steeper seat-tube angle
  • Longer wheelbase, longer reach
  • New suspension tune
  • New RockShox Reverb seatpost with shorter insertion length and smoother action
  • Shorter seat tube
  • Flip chip so geometry can be tweaked to high and low positions

The Santa Cruz Hightower gets an update

Detail of the shock and bottom bracket of the Juliana Maverick
The shock on the Maverick sits in a low position in the frame; for the Hightower, this is an update
Juliana Bicycles

If the bike looks or sounds a little familiar that’s because it’s essentially the Hightower in Juliana livery.

Juliana makes no secret of the fact it shares frames with Santa Cruz based on its view that women don’t need a specific geometry, just a well designed one.

For Juliana, the difference lies in the suspension tune, which has been developed to suit riders in a lighter weight range than Santa Cruz equivalents, as well as contact points such as the women’s-specific Juliana saddle.

So, as the two bikes are essentially the same, that also means that the Hightower has had some serious tweaking.

The most obvious difference is the shock position, which is now attached much lower on the down tube, bringing with it a lower centre of gravity and adjusted leverage curve. The shock is now driven by the lower link, previous models were driven by the upper link.

Juliana/Santa Cruz have made this change on a number of bikes in recent years, most notably the Roubion/Bronson, which got the update early in 2018. Don’t expect to see it across the whole range, though. For the shorter travel, more playful trail bikes, such as the Furtado/5010, Juliana and Santa Cruz state that the higher shock position can’t be beaten.

Handy additional elements include the fact that the frame can fit a water bottle in all sizes, so those who like to ride light and fast don’t have to go thirsty.

Juliana Maverick / Santa Cruz Hightower geometry

Chart showing the frame geometry on the new Juliana Maverick
The Maverick comes in three sizes, and for comparison we’ve included the previous Hightower which will be replaced by this release
Immediate Media Co

Juliana and Santa Cruz tend to update their bicycles every few years, so rather than tweaking things a little here and there, the only real changes year to year are the colours. Then, every three or four years or so, a whole reworked model will come out.

This bike (or these bikes if you prefer) is no exception, and it’s thoroughly up to date, but doesn’t exactly push the envelope.

A now rather retro 430mm reach, 67-degree head angle and 74.3-degree seat tube angle has been replaced by a 450mm reach, slacker 65.2-degree head angle and steeper 76.6-degree in the low setting.

The Maverick/Hightower includes a geometry flip chip which allows the bike to be tweaked to a slightly more upright, or high, position. This steepens the head angle to 65.5 degrees, the seat tube angle to 77 degrees, lengthens the reach to 453mm and increases the standover from 713mm in the low position to 718 mm in the high position.

Reach has increased, as has the wheelbase though the standover is higher, and the chainstay length has decreased fractionally.

New RockShox Reverb seatpost

Another great addition is the new RockShox Reverb Stealth seatpost. Designed to have a shorter overall length, this means that on bikes such as the Maverick and Hightower, which have an interrupted seat tube due to the new position of the pivot, which in turn limits the insertion length available, a post with long travel is now an option.

In practice, this means that whatever size Maverick you go choose, you’ll be able to drop the saddle right out of the way for those technical descents.

The internals on the Reverb Stealth have also been re-engineered, so it requires less force to make it drop and returns at a quick pace.

Juliana Maverick full bike range and sizing

There are four builds available, based around either the top-of-the-line CC grade carbon or the slightly cheaper C carbon, which brings with it a slight weight penalty.

All bikes are available in small, medium or large. Alas, though perhaps unsurprisingly, Juliana isn’t bringing the Maverick out in a size XS citing the inherent engineering difficulties in developing a frame that works for smaller riders with those big 29er wheels.

However, the Juliana team tells us that Amy Nelson, Juliana and Santa Cruz’s 5ft1in/155cm product manager, rides a size small Maverick, which has a reach of 425mm and a standover of 699mm in the low setting, or 428mm and 704mm in the high setting.

In addition to the full builds, there is a frame-only option on the CC version in some territories, which costs £3,299 or AU$5,499.

Juliana Maverick C R 29

  • Frame: Carbon C 29in 140mm Travel VPP
  • Forks: RockShox Yari RC, 150mm, 29in
  • Shock: FOX Float Performance DPS
  • Drivetrain: SRAM NX Eagle, 12spd with SRAM PG1230 11-50t cassette and SRAM NX Eagle 148 DUB, 30t-170mm
  • Wheelset: WTB ST i29 TCS 2.0 29in rims with SRAM MTH hubs and DT Swiss Competition spokes
  • Brakes: SRAM Guide R with Avid Centerline 180mm rotors
  • Bar/Stem: Race Face Aeffect R 780mm handlebars with 50mm Race Face Ride stem
  • Seatpost/saddle: Race Face Aeffect dropper with Juliana Segundo saddle
  • Sizes: S, M, L
  • Price: £4,499 / €4,699 / $4,299 / AU$N/A

Juliana Maverick C S 29

  • Frame: Carbon C 29in 140mm Travel VPP
  • Forks: RockShox Lyrik Select+ 150mm, 29in
  • Shock: RockShox Super Deluxe Select+
  • Drivetrain: SRAM GX Eagle, 12spd, with SRAM XG1275 Eagle cassette and SRAM Stylo 7k 148 DUB, 30t-170mm crankset
  • Wheelset: RaceFace AR Offset 30 29in rims with DT Swiss 370 and DT Swiss Competition spokes
  • Brakes: SRAM Code R with Avid Centerline 180mm rotors
  • Bar/stem: Race Face Aeffect R 780mm handlebars with 50mm Race Face Aeffect R stem
  • Seatpost/saddle: RockShox Reverb Stealth, 1x Lever dropper seatpost with Juliana Segundo saddle
  • Sizes: S, M, L
  • Price: £5,399 / €5,499 / $5,199 / AU$8,499

Juliana Maverick CC X01 29

  • Frame: Carbon CC 29in 140mm Travel VPP
  • Forks: RockShox Lyrik Ultimate, 150mm, 29in
  • Shock: RockShox Super Deluxe Select Ultimate
  • Drivetrain: SRAM X01 Eagle, 12spd with SRAM XG1295 Eagle cassette and SRAM X1 Eagle 148 DUB crankset
  • Wheelset: RaceFace ARC Offset 30 29in rims with DT Swiss 350 and DT Swiss Competition Race
  • Brakes: SRAM Code RSC with Avid Centerline 180mm rotors
  • Bar/stem: Santa Cruz AM Carbon 900mm handlebars with 50mm Race Face Aeffect R stem
  • Seatpost/saddle: RockShox Reverb Stealth, 1x Lever, MatchMaker dropper seatpost with Juliana Primiero saddle
  • Sizes: S, M, L
  • Price: £6,599 / €7,399 / $7,099 / AU$10,899
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Juliana Maverick CC X01 29 RSV

  • Frame: Carbon CC 29in 140mm Travel VPP
  • Forks: RockShox Lyrik Ultimate, 150mm, 29in
  • Shock: RockShox Super Deluxe Select Ultimate
  • Drivetrain: SRAM X01 Eagle, 12spd, with SRAM XG1295 Eagle cassette and SRAM X1 Eagle 148 DUB, 30t-170m crankset
  • Wheelset: Santa Cruz Reserve 30 29in Carbon rims with DT Swiss 350 hubs and DT Swiss Competition Race spokes
  • Brakes: SRAM Code RSC with Avid Centerline 180mm rotors
  • Bar/stem: Santa Cruz AM Carbon 800mm handlebars with 50mm Race Face Aeffect R stem
  • Seatpost/saddle: RockShox Reverb Stealth, 1x Lever dropper seat post with Juliana Primiero Saddle
  • Sizes: S, M, L
  • Price: £7,799 / €8,59999 / $8,299 / AU$N/A

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