Updated: 15th December 2016
The Giant Stance is a full suspension mountain bike, built around a quality aluminium frame, with RockShox suspension and Shimano Deore groupset, that offers the kind of performance that is usually reserved for bikes at a higher price point. Offering proper full sus MTB confidence and control, at just over a grand, it is easy to see why the Giant Stance featured in this review is such a popular mountain bike.
Whether you are new to mountain bike riding or are stepping up from a hardtail, you will find that the Stance offers a confident ride on both rough and smooth trails. The 120mm of suspension travel, front and rear, is combined with dialled trail geometry and rapid rolling, yet nimble 27.5” wheels. This makes the Giant Stance ideal for all types of mountain biking, from cross-country single track to technical trail centre loops.
The Stance frame is built in Giant’s own factory and as one of the largest bicycle frame manufacturers in the world they certainly know a thing or two about making quality MTB frames. Built from 6061 ALUXX-Grade aluminium the tubes are press formed and butted which reduces the amount of unnecessary material used to achieve the desired strength to weight ratio.
The tapered Overdrive head tube adds front end stiffness for improved steering precision while the PowerCore bottom bracket area and asymmetric chain stays offer additional lateral stiffness for predictable handling and efficient power transfer.
Unlike most bike manufacturers, Giant creates its ALUXX alloy tubing and builds the frames in its own factory, rather than subcontracting them to one of the handful of mega manufacturers such as, er, Giant.Bike Radar
This ‘FlexPoint’ system saves weight and cost compared to extra pivots and linkages, and it turns out it’s no bad thing in terms of ride quality either. Bike Radar
The Stance features a FlexPoint suspension system that does away with the Maestro system found on it’s bigger brother the Trance. This keeps things simple, lightweight and durable. FlexPoint is a single pivot design that relies on the built-in flex of the rear triangle to offer a simple yet effective suspension solution. While this system lacks some of the fully-active pedalling and braking control that Maestro delivers, FlexPoint is more than adequate for cross country trails and requires much less maintenance to keep it working smoothly.
The 120mm of smooth suspension travel is controlled by the RockShox Monarch R shock and 30 Gold fork. Both units are air sprung to keep the weight down and offer infinite spring rate adjustment. Rebound damping is adjustable for proper suspension set up.
The Stance now features a Shimano 9 speed drivetrain with an FSA double chainset up front. This gives you a wide range of gears that are much easier to use than traditional triple ring MTB chainsets. The gear range offered is wide enough for taking on challenging climbs, while still giving you plenty of pedalling power for the descents. Shimano hydraulic disc brakes give you confident all-weather speed control.
Giant have also increased the handlebar width on the Stance to a more trail friendly 730mm. This is combined with a short stem and offers improved control on technical trails.
Shimano components offer the robust durability and reliability you need when riding rough tracks and trails.
The Stance is built specifically for 27.5” wheels as these offer the best balance between nimble handling characteristics and rapid rolling performance.
The 27.5” wheels on the Stance are ideal for new and experienced riders alike. They are nimble enough for tight turns yet offer improved rolling speed on all types of terrain when compared to traditional 26” MTB wheels.
Built in Giant’s own factory the double wall alloy rims are robust enough for rough trail riding yet lightweight enough for long cross county rides. Maxxis Ardent tyres are fast rolling on all types of terrain and feature aggressive side nobs for confident cornering.
With 120mm of full suspension travel and progressive MTB geometry the Giant Stance is ideal for beginner and intermediate riders who want a mountain bike, that offers confident performance on challenging trails.
The Stance will give you a full suspension advantage, over similarly priced hardtails, which is most noticeable when riding rough trails. You will find that the Stance offers more grip, when climbing as well as descending, which in turn offers a more confident and efficient ride. The component spec bridges the gap nicely between XC and trail riding. This makes the Stance an ideal choice for the off-road curious who want to experience all that mountain biking has to offer, without breaking the bank.