Back Country Beast - the Ghost H AMR X
The distinctive Ghost H AMR X caught our eye at Eurobike whilst we were on the hunt for the best adventure bikes at the show. Ghost takes adventure one step further into the wild with this wonderous machine.
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Dubbed a 'back country bike' the Ghost H AMR X leaves you in no doubt of the type of expedition this bike will take you on. This machine wants to surpass the road less trodden and roll its rubber over ground which is very much untrodden. In short, Ghost say this bike was made to take a beating and still not let you down. Although it's not a new bike for 2018 it was certainly individual, potentially creating a new genre of bikes with current member numbers at one!
At first look the H AMR X appears to be a full susser decked out with all manner of bike bags. Check it out a little closer though and you can see that this machine is much more than that with some thoughtful design and spec details incorporated to keep you moving efficiently whilst off the beaten track.
The frame is a slightly altered version of Ghost's 160mm FR AMR platform, changed to make way for the gearbox and to provide the bike with 140mm of travel rather than 160mm. The H AMR X uses a Pinion P1.18 gearbox, chosen for its large gear range and hardiness in extreme conditions. The Pinion gearbox is basically a fully sealed oil bath of cogs that bolts directly onto frames designed specifically to accept it. The 18 gears on offer here create a wider range of gears than a conventional 30spd set up with the added benefit of no rear mech to get damaged or left hanging on any rocks. Pinion say that the gearboxes are good for 60000km+ and won't need an oil change until you've smashed out 10,000km. Gearboxes are a great choice for bikes where maintenance needs to be kept to a minimum and reliability is key.
Ghost are speccing this bike with a 140mm Cane Creek DB Inline Coil shock whose action they say "is the ultimate blend of perfect responsiveness, pedaling ease and minimalist maintenance." This shock features a climb switch which is said to eliminate pedal bob whilst maintaining traction, good for grinding up long climbs, conserving energy and making pedalling more efficient. All good things, plus it looks blingy too.....
Further comfort and grip are aided by the use of 27.5" plus tyres, a 2.8" Schwalbe Nobby Nic and a Rocket Ron set onto Race Face Arc 40 rims, the 40 figure denoting a 40mm wide internal rim width, allowing lower pressures to be run without too much tyre roll. You could also fit 29er wheels in here if you so desired but we reckon that plus is a good option that will grip like chewing gum to a cat both uphill and down.
Another great feature, perfect for days spent off the grid and exploring is the USB port in the steerer tube, powered by a dynamo in the front hub, ideal for charging all manner of accessories whilst on the move.
The bike matches it's rear travel with 140mm Rockshox Pike forks, elsewhere around this adventure companion you'll find a Reverb Stealth dropper post and SRAM Guide RS brakes with respectable 200mm / 180mm discs to stop you adequately when you are fully loaded. The H AMR X's geometry is relatively conservative but a 67 degree head angle will be more than applicable for tackling the kind of terrain you'll find ahead of you given the loaded up nature of the bike. Chain stays of 438mm and a seat angle of 75.5 degrees will likely afford you a bike with a good climbing ability although though these could be longer and steeper respectively to improve things further, having not ridden the bike we can't speculate further. The seat tube on a medium bike is 460mm which is a rather tall given the 430mm reach but this a common theme amongst other bikes in the Ghost range.
Finally, for the hefty 6,000 Euro price tag, the H AMR X also comes with a full set of bike packing bags: a frame bag, seat bag, handlebar bag and backpack with accessory pocket. We'd love the get a bike such as this out for a few days away from the pull and push of the modern day society and find out just how far and how fast a bike like this will travel. Amidst the bright and shiny hubbub of Eurobike we were whisked away for a few moments to the dusty silence of a solitary trail, making tracks towards an old shepherds hut to make camp for the night. With a sharp awakening of the fashion show music booming we were back in the room ..... another day then.