One of the coolest parts of Contender’s trip to New Jersey to check out Cannondale's 2019 line was seeing the new 2019 Cannondale Habit and Bad Habit trail bikes. And for as popular as the outgoing Habit still is, we were downright fired up about this complete revamp from Cannondale. Not only is the new Cannondale Habit (and Bad Habit) a complete rethink of the ideal Cannondale trail bike, but it looks to be an amazing bike for all of the riding we like to do.
Cannondale’s presentation started with an idea, what they call Proportional Response. The goal? Ensure that riders of all sizes experience the same performance, as typically smaller riders experience worse suspension performance under braking, while larger riders experience worse pedaling performance. Their solution is to find the optimal center of gravity for each rider, and base suspension performance around that.
As such, Cannondale has developed unique suspension kinematics for every size of Habit. Each Habit uses a single pivot shock design featuring different shock mounting points on the downtube as well as different shock yolk sizes, rotating up and back as reach gets shorter. This adjusts kinematics such that at the sag point, each rider receives the same performance. Frankly, we’re a little surprised that other companies haven’t done this (or at least haven’t marketed around it).
Besides that, the Habit features a modern, progressive geometry across all sizes. A 66 degree headtube, a 75 degree seattube, appropriate reach, stack, and wheelbase measurements make for a bike that is perfectly modern. Other features include clearance for 27.5” plus tires as well as 29 x 2.5” tires. It also features a flip chip to swap between 29" and 27.5" plus tire, or if someone wants to overfork with a 140mm or 150mm fork. All Habit and Bad Habit rear swingarms pair Boost 148mm spacing with Cannondale’s AI-offset to offer shorter chainstays and greater tire and mud clearance.
Cannondale wanted us to pit this side by side with other trail bikes from some of the best brands on the market. Based on price, spec, and looks alone, the Habit is sure to find plenty of fans. We weren't able to ride the bike, but judging by the geometry alone, the bike looks like a ripper. The bike is a bit more slacked out than what you'd find from most bikes with 130mm travel, but it compares really similarly to the Scott Genius, one of our favorite trail bikes in the shop.
What separates the new Habit from the competition is how uncomplicated the bike is. We’re definitely fans of how simple the bike is (especially compared to older Cannondale mountain bikes), with refreshingly simple graphics and smart parts spec from the bottom to the top. Cannondale wanted the Habit to work just as well as an all-day companion as it would for a lunch ride, and a no-nonsense bike like this looks to be the ticket. Prices for the 2019 Cannondale Habit start at just $2100, while the Bad Habit with it's 27.5 x 2.8” tires start at $2600.
Not only did we get an early look at the 2019 Cannondale models like the Habit, but we have the Habit here in our shops in Salt Lake City and Park City. Have any questions? Shoot us an email anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org, or give us a call to our shops during business hours.
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