Santa Cruz Nomad C GX AXS RSV Coil review – Full-Suspension – Mountain Bikes

This review has been republished as part of our Headline Bikes test, where we put eight trend-setting mountain bikes for 2023 through their paces. Read more about the bikes setting the trend for the year ahead. 

The Santa Cruz Nomad C GX AXS RSV is designed to tackle everything from big bike-park lines to enduro racing.

This latest sixth-generation version of the Nomad is slack, rugged and ready to rip.

With a mullet-wheel setup, the gravity-focused bike is intended to be more versatile than previous incarnations.

Changes to the suspension kinematics and geometry are intended to deliver a balance between long-travel bike stability and the kind of agility Nomad riders have come to expect.

Santa Cruz Nomad C GX AXS RSV Coil frame

The carbon frame is available in Santa Cruz’s C or CC construction.
Andy Lloyd / Our Media

Available in carbon fibre only – with the choice of Santa Cruz’s C or lighter CC construction – each frame size has a specific layup that influences its stiffness.

A Glovebox storage port is built into the down tube, containing two tool bags.

Maxxis provides an Assegai for the front and a Minion at the rear.
Andy Lloyd / Our Media

The new mullet wheel setup (29in front, 27.5in rear) improves rollover and traction.

This is combined with lower anti-squat, to minimise harshness over square-edged hits (at the sacrifice of a little pedalling efficiency) and a lower starting leverage rate. This is intended to better support body-weight movements and maintain geometry stability.

Santa Cruz Nomad C GX AXS RSV Coil geometry

All sizes share the same 63.8-degree head angle. In the ‘low’ setting, our large frame has a 472mm reach, 77.6-degree effective seat tube angle, 343mm bottom bracket height and 444mm (size-specific) chainstays.

A flip chip on the lower link of the VPP suspension enables you to steepen the head angle by 0.3 degrees and the seat tube angle by between 0.2 and 0.3 degrees. You can also add 3mm to the bottom bracket height and reach, and lop 1mm off the rear centre.

Santa Cruz Nomad C GX AXS RSV Coil specifications



The GX AXS RSV Coil is one of the pricier builds in the new Nomad range, coming with SRAM’s GX Eagle AXS wireless shifting and Santa Cruz’s Reserve carbon wheels.

You also get a Fox 36 Performance Elite fork and a RockShox Super Deluxe Select+ Coil shock. SRAM Code R brakes control your speed, while DoubleDown-casing Maxxis rubber is there to ward off punctures.

Santa Cruz Nomad C GX AXS RSV Coil ride impressions

The Nomad was given a thorough workout at the bike park and on some gnarly trails.
Andy Lloyd / Our Media

I put the Nomad through its paces

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