For 2012, the Spanish motorcycle manufacture, Gas Gas, has introduced a new line of Enduro bikes in the Gas Gas XC line. The 2012 Gas Gas bikes have a new design due to a new frame and subframe, but continue with two-stroke engines found on the previous models. These Enduro bikes have been a staple of the off-road racing scene, but remain relatively unknown on the streets of the U.S.
While Gas Gas is calling the 2012 Gas Gas XC an all-new bike, it is fact the old engine housed in a brand new body. The new subframe is made from state-of-the-art three component polymer and is almost all plastic. It also incorporates the airbox in one piece, and is designed to allow a cartridge-style filter in the future. The new frame is made from chromoly steel and looks significantly larger, as well as being more rigid.
The use of the almost completely plastic subframe means that the overall weight of the 2012 Gas Gas XC has been kept down. In fact, the bike is actually 4.4 lbs lighter than the previous version. The lighter weight of the Enduro bike means that rider fatigue is also reduced. This allows for longer riding, as well as the ability to maintain the bike at a higher speed for longer times when racing.
While the engine has remained the same in the 2012 Gas Gas XC, the manufacturer has redesigned the clutch. The new design provides an improved and increase oil flow to the clutch. As a result, the designers were able to install lighter springs, which in turn make the clutch that much easier to manipulate by riders as they cycle through the six-speed transmission while riding.
The 2012 Gas Gas XC bikes may not be especially fast, but they were designed to be ridden in almost any conditions. The suspension and light weight of these Enduro bikes mean that they handle superbly, particularly in the tight conditions found on the trail. The downside is that the power provided by the engines of the 2012 Gas Gas bikes is basically enough to the get the job down, and some riders will be disappointed with the bikes’ performance over open spaces. It can also struggle when trying to mount steeper hills.