Scott Spark 40 Review
The Scott Spark 40 mountain bike is endowed with a full suspension setup that gives you plenty of travel and makes this model more responsive and composed when you are facing tough terrain, with both ascents and descents on the menu. It remains composed in most situations and also gives you the ability to remotely alter the lockout settings, so that you have stiffness and consequently, excellent power transfer on tap.
The bike is built with a Spark Alloy 6061 custom butted frame with hydroformed tubing to make sure that it is very weight conscious. It comes close to matching some of Scott’s hardtail options of a similar price, but with that extra frame compliance which is necessary to make it more of an all-rounder.
Stiffness is expounded thanks to the tapered headtube, which means that you also get a greater degree of control and engagement with the handling. Models like the Scott Spark 40 mountain bike need to be able to reassure the rider and sustain their confidence, so that they can achieve more, which is certainly something that you get here.
The suspension is provided by a RockShox Reba RL Air fork at the front and a DT Swiss M210 airspring shock at the rear. You get 120mm of travel when you push the bike to the extent of its capabilities, which in turn, means that there could well be situations in which this compliance is a little too relaxed. As such, the handlebar mounted TwinLoc lever will come in handy, as it lets you automatically activate full lockout at both the front and rear, simultaneously. The result is that you get a much stiffer ride, with effective transference of power through the transmission that will help you to climb swiftly and also use the bike with ease on flatter, less arduous tarmac sections.
The drivetrain is made up of components from the Shimano XT groupset, with Rapidfire Plus shifters from the SLX range thrown in for good measure. Scott has chosen the Avid Elixir 5S hydraulic disc brakes for this model. It has even managed to cut down on the weight of the braking setup, thanks to a direct post mount system at the rear, which helps improve the bike’s specs as a whole.
DT Swiss 445d rims are paired with Scott’s preferred Schwalbe Rocket Ron tyres, this time featuring a Kevlar bead in order to increase their durability and lessen the likelihood that you will have to pay out for replacements any time soon.
The Scott Comp seatpost is matched with a Scott Racing saddle, to give the Spark 40 a solid grounding upon which the rider can remain comfortable and engaged with the ride. A Scott Pilot 15 Pro handlebar is light and effective at the front, letting you hold on tight during the big hits and also keep the bike pointed in the right direction when facing technical twists and turns on the trail.
The Scott Spark 40 mountain bike is a good choice for those who are looking to get an off road experience, which marries uphill speed, downhill compliance and cross country credentials. It gives you a finely tuned full suspension arrangement and a sturdy, stiff alloy frame, wrapping these elements together in a package which is relatively affordable and still representative of the features that help to make this range appealing.
While there are cheaper Spark models out there, the 40 is a nice fit for those who want lower weight, improved drivetrain components and shocks which react progressively to the trials and tribulations with which you are faced.
Scott Spark 40 Specifications
- Front Fork: Rockshox Reba RL Air, Motion Control lockout, rebound adjustable, 120mm travel
- Rear Shock: DT Swiss M210 Air, ABS spring, rebound adjustable, lockout
- Front Derailleur: Shimano XT
- Rear Derailleur: Shimano XT
- Gears: 30
- Chainring: Shimano XT 42/32/24T
- Cassette: Shimano SLX HG81 11-36T 10-speed
- Shifters: Shimano SLX Rapidfire Plus
- Brakes: Avid Elixir 5S, 180mm HS1 rotor (front), 160mm (rear)
- Wheels: DT Swiss 445d
- Tyres: Schwalbe Rocket Ron Performance, 26×2.25