Those who are into mountain biking would want a mountain bike that is not only serviceable but one that is truly imposing. A mountain bike that can take the climbs and downhill and handle much terrain, but is durable to withstand any pressure and comfortable enough for the rider to take those bumpy rides off the beaten path.
Giant Talon Bike may offer the complete package at a price that is not prohibitive and genuinely affordable. How good is the Giant Talon Bike, and can it be the ultimate mountain bike for those who want to engage in mountain biking?
The Giant Talon Bike
The Giant Talon belongs to Giant Bicycles, a bicycle company that produces top-quality but affordable bikes. It is one of their better-known mountain bikes.
Giant bikes are known to be among those that have reasonable bike prices.
There are three versions of Giant Talon, the latest being that of Talon 4. However, they all sport the same performance and comfort and can take almost any terrain smoothly and efficiently.
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The Specs of Giant Talon Bike
The manufacturer described the Giant Talon Bike as excellent for cross-country and trail riding. It can handle almost any terrain possible and take on rugged trails and other rough services.
It could be outstanding, too, along fire roads and pump tracks.
The classic hardtail design and frame geometry are ideal for a mountain bike that promises to give you the best of both worlds: XC and trail riding. All versions of Giant Talon sport ALUXX aluminum alloy frame, a durable but very light frame suitable for mountain biking.
The color is metallic black and available in different sizes, metallic black medium and metallic black small.
The Talon 1 sports a drivetrain composed of Shimano Deore; meanwhile, Talon 2 and 4 have Microshift Advent for their drivetrains. All of them, however, employ ProWheel Charm for the crankset.
The shifters of Talon 1 is 1×10, while that of Talon 2 and Talon 4 is 1×9 and 1×8, respectively.
Wheels and Tires
All Giant Talon bike versions employ Kenda Booster, with the Talon 1 tires slightly thicker than the two. It has 29-inch wheels, but a smaller 27.5-inch is also available.
The specs of rims and spokes remain pretty much the same too.
The stem, saddle seat post, and handlebar are all in-house by Giant, available in different and varying sizes depending on the bike size.
Talon 1 fork is a RockshockXC30 with suspension travel of 80mm, while the other two employ SR Suntour XCM30, with the same travel suspension.
Talon 1 and 2 employ Tektro hydraulic disc brakes, while Talon 4 employs Tektro mechanical disc brakes.
What Do The Specs Tell Us?
The change of specs from Talon 1 to Talon 4, especially in the drivetrain, suspension fork, and brakes, is noticeable. Many consider this a significant downgrade.
The price of Giant Talon bike versions significantly decreases as you go to the latest version. In this regard, we must say that the Giant Talon Bike, its earliest version, is the best of the three and one that can give the optimum performance.
That will also be the subject of this review, being the one that epitomizes the best of the Giant Talon Bike.
The ALUXX aluminum alloy frame is ideal for both XC and trail riding because it is light yet durable enough to handle the stress of riding on uneven terrains and challenging rugged trials.
But it is still light enough for the rider to have a certain speed, though not as fast as lightning. But that might be unnecessary, considering it is MTB.
Nevertheless, it sports a Shimano Deore, which is known for durability. It is not comparable to the other, more illustrious Shimano groupsets, but you get optimum, high-quality performance for the price.
The suspension is enough for beginners and entry-level cyclists. The suspension travel is not that long, which suits that of an XC bike, but it is serviceable enough on trail rides and can give quite a decent performance.
The tires are of Kenda, which is known for producing top-quality mountain bike tires. Meanwhile, other parts are in-house, but Giant has high-quality bike components, though not necessarily high-end ones.
Overall, the specs of Giant Talon Bike suggest a mountain bike that can perform very decently either on XC or trail riding, but not necessarily the best performance for either of the two.
The Pros and Cons of Giant Talon Bike
Why buy a Giant Talon? Here are the reasons why:
A More Than Decent, Serviceable Mountain Bike
Whatever versions we choose of this Giant Talon, there is no doubt that it has of excellent quality, notwithstanding those supposed downgrades in specs. It has an ideal light but very durable aluminum alloy frame and components made by Giant, which are of outstanding quality.
It performs excellently on the road, with enough suspension to take many terrains and rugged trails. Overall, it is a good quality bike that can provide a pleasant biking experience.
Suitable For Both XC and Trail Riding
Some mountain bikes are excellent for cross-country riding; others are much better for trail riding. Giant Talon Bike and all its versions may not be the best when it comes to either, but it can serve you well when riding both.
Not an elite bike for either one. But one that is suitable for both. It does not give you the best of both worlds but allows you to enjoy what XC and trail riding offer.
Best Entry-Level Bike
This bike is ideal for beginners to enduro or trail riding for the reasons already mentioned above. The specs are both suitable for enduro and trail riding and can give the entry-level riders what they need, performance-wise.
They are comfortable for both rides. It also gives the entry-level riders a chance to fully assess whether they will choose enduro or trail riding or continue having it both ways.
An Excellent Bike-Price Ratio
The Giant Talon 1 is way more expensive than the newer versions, at around $1,000. But whatever version you take, you will get your money’s worth, if not more. Not a bargain, but you truly get what you deserve for this bike.
What are the drawbacks of buying a Giant Talon Bike?
Not An Elite Bike
Giant Talon is never your top-of-the-line bike and cannot compare to highly-rated, the so-called elites of mountain bikes. Its performance, as we say, is more than decent, but not as outstanding as the others.
And as you go from Talon 1 to newer versions, it gets more pedestrian, with downgraded specs and parts. But the price, too, of course, goes down with it.
Not Ideal For More Experienced Riders
Riders who want to enjoy more than the usual aggressive ride on cross country or want more bumps and rugged trails might be disappointed with this mountain bike. Its specs and parts are not for the more arduous grins in trail riding.
Also, it cannot give the usual high thrill and excitement provided by high-end mountain bikes.
It may not be the ideal bike for those who may want more thrill than the causal rides on different terrains offer.
The Ideal Riders For Giant Talon Bike
Beginners, aspiring singletrack riders, and entry-level cyclists who want to have a feel first of what it means to ride along the trails or cross-country will enjoy riding this bike. The specs are ideal, and the experience it provides is enough to enjoy a confident ride, have fun, and know what it takes to ride in different terrain.
Casual Riders and Those into Recreational Riding
Some people want to enjoy riding a climb and racing downhill. Some enjoy taking the trails or driving in mud or some uneven terrain. Giant Talon is ideal for them; the stability and comfort the bike provides to the rider is enough for them to have smooth travel and appreciate mountain bike riding.
Those who engage in biking to keep themselves physically fit by engaging rough surfaces and uneven terrain, or taking the climbs and riding downhill, will enjoy what Giant Talon has to offer.
Nothing can be better than having a good sweat while challenging different terrains. It combines the thrill, excitement, and keeping yourself in shape. You need not take real challenging or rugged trails as professional trail riders do; you only need to take the easy ones.
Biking around, whether on different terrains or in your neighborhood, is far better than engaging the stationary bike in the gym.
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Conclusion: How Good is the Giant Talon Bike?
It is safe to say that this bike is the ideal bike for the average person, the average person in the real sense of the term. Those not-so-ambitious riders who want to enjoy what mountain biking entails, without the skill set of the professional mountain bikers or trail riders, will indeed have fun riding this one.
The person who wants a reasonably priced bike, one that is not high-end but can have the trappings of one. A bike that is not expensive but serviceable, comfortable, and durable.
That Giant bicycle made significant changes in the succeeding versions of the Giant Talon bike suggests a lot. By making the changes, it brought down the price of succeeding Giant Talon bikes.
Talon 4 costs 600 dollars, way more affordable than the Talon 1, which is still the best version. The bike company probably wants to make this bike available to a larger public.
Giant is known in the bike industry for making that are genuinely affordable to the public at large. That, without sacrificing much of the quality, durability, and comfort.