Why the Scott Spark RC 900 is King

Olympic gold, a Cape Epic triumph, and back-to-back World Cup XCO Series victories… these remarkable triumphs share two common attributes: Nino Schurter, and his Scott Spark RC dual suspension.

Oli Munnik |

While there’s no denying that Schurter is the world’s best (and arguably the greatest ever), Bicycling was eager to gauge whether the Spark RC’s elite-level performances would translate into the ideal package for amateur racers.

The first thing that strikes you when throwing a leg over the Spark RC is its acceleration, and ability to change direction at a moment’s notice. It feels as if the bike is alive beneath you – its excitable personality reminded us of the endless energy dogs have when chasing after a ball all afternoon. Lethargic it’s not.

With stiffness in spades (thanks largely to its re-engineered bottom-bracket area, and 1x-specific rear end), the RC explodes out of turns, with the front wheel begging you to ‘pop it’ in honour of Schurter’s trademark flicks.

The 68.5° head angle puts the front axle far in front of you, which at first you think will rob you of agility and climbing speed; but there’s no compromise to speak of, with the geometry coming into its own on the descents, where the Spark simply thrives.

Our testers were big fans of Scott’s patented TwinLoc technology, which allowed us to switch effortlessly between Lockout, Traction Control and Descend modes. Integrated into the grip, the lever is neatly tucked underneath the handlebar. Without doubt, TwinLoc is a differentiator.

Pedalling performance was superb, with the Fox NUDE rear shock offering noticeably efficient mid-stroke stability. On loose terrain, Traction Control mode was appreciated as it provided the perfect balance between ‘lock-out’ for efficiency and ‘suppleness’ for grip.

Itching for speed, the Spark RC is a true racer’s weapon; the harder you push, the better it responds. R85 000 and it’s all yours.

What We Liked

– The Spark RC feels simply electric, begging you to accelerate and attack at every opportunity – just like Nino!

– Beautifully balanced, it’s a genuine all-rounder.

– Scott’s proprietary three-phase TwinLoc lock-out system was simple and efficient.

What We Didn’t Like

– A slightly wider handlebar would add control for nervous descenders.

What We Said

“The most inviting bike of all – the Spark RC is itching to race.” – JAMES REID

“Very sharp, and beautifully balanced – Scott have got this one dialled perfectly.” – CHRIS WHITFIELD

“It’s truly flattering, and goads you to ride it faster and faster. If you’re looking for a bike that does it all – this is the one.” – AARON BORRILL

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