First Look: NS RAG+
We told you about the launch of this bike a few weeks ago and we’re excited to say we now have our hands on the real thing. The RAG+ from NS Bikes is so called because it stands for Road And Gravel Plus, and NS Bikes is convinced that its experience in hard living abuse standing bikes gives them all the skills they need to produce a brilliant hard wearing but fun to play on gravel bike. Some of the same people that designed this bike also have a hand in the Rondo Ruut range which we’ve also told you about. You’ll notice a similarity in the drive side chainstay…but we’re diving ahead. Let’s look at the RAG+.
NS Bikes is the dirt jump and mountain bike brand within the family of brands which also includes Creme (who make urban bikes) and the new gravel specific Rondo.
Made from 6061 T6 custom formed alloy frame and butted tubes, you can ride the RAG+ on 700C wheels equipped with 40mm tyres, or with 27.5in MTB wheels with tyres as big as 2.2inches.
Without wishing to state the obvious, we’ve got it set up in 700C flavour, with 40mm tyres. If you look really, really closely at this photo you’ll see the slightest of curvy cutouts in the seat tube. This gets that rear wheel tucked in tight and the chainstay short at 420mm. We’d best point it at some corners then…
The fork is an NS Gravel+ carbon fork with 15mm dropouts and NS thru axle. We like the subtle gloss branding here.
To (almost) match the brown sidewalls on the tyres, we have a brown – or is that caramel – stem. Complete with words to remind you where you should be riding.
SRAM 1x drivetrain provides the go, with a 42t chain ring up front and an 11-42t cassette at the rear. Hannah is going to be riding the Dirty Reiver on this, so she’ll be heading for the hills to see whether her legs can get her up them with this gearing. If not, it’ll be a simple swap to something more forgiving of weedy legs.
A QR seatpost clamp – in the absence of a dropper, this could be handy for those technical descents perhaps?
Brakes are SRAM Apex hydraulic disc, with 160mm rotors rear and front. Shifting is SRAM Apex 11spd.
It’s drawn a fair amount of attention in the office, with subtle styling touches perhaps giving away its dirt park roots.
Hubs are NS Bikes’ own brand featuring sealed bearings with a 15mm thru axle front and a 142x12mm thru axle rear, and a lovely finish. All laced onto Alex Draw 2.1P Asymmetrical, 32h, tubless compatible rims. So lovely, loops are fitted to keep the hubs clean and nice. How long will the rest of the bike be lovely and shiny we wonder…not long!
They’re £1649.99 and will be landing with UK distributer Hotlines in early March.