Santa Cruz has no problem generating waves in the mountain biking community, and few bikes made a bigger splash than the Santa Cruz 5010, the younger brother to the Bronson. The 5010 uses 27.5 inch wheels coupled with 130mm of travel and a 68 degree headtube angle to give a balanced, do-everything ride.  If you’re familiar with the Santa Cruz lineup, you’re probably thinking that that sounds a whole lot like the Blur; frankly, you’d be right.  The 5010’s 27.5 inch wheels turn the modest amount of travel into a real technical trail gobbler, and we snagged the 5010 with the R AM 27 kit for review.

UPDATE: Read the Santa Cruz 5010 Review

This model kitted out with a wallet-friendly mixed Shimano SLX/Deore drivetrain featuring a clutched SLX Shadow Plus rear derailleur.  Deore brakes (180/160mm rotors), a varied cockpit and meaty Maxxis High Roller 2.3 EXO tubeless tires round off a very solid entry-level kit.

Originally released as the Santa Cruz Solo, the bike went through a name change thanks to a similarly-named 700cc rigid bicycle.  In this press release, Santa Cruz underlined the logic behind the name change.  When you see this graphic, it all makes sense:



Anyway, we’re stoked for the bike – sandwiched next to the Santa Cruz Bantam and the Bronson, we think that the 5010 has a whole lot to offer the technical trail crowd.  Our full review will follow in good time, but in the mean time enjoy these pictures of the Solo… err, 5010.



I may need a 5010 sticker


Great execution of the VPP design with 27.5 wheels


Tapered head tube


Anyone else think the new Fox Evolution bridge looks a lot like the old Marzocchi Angry M? Maybe that’s just me.


Shimano SLX Shifters with Deore Brakes


142x12mm rear axle with IS brake mounts (why no post mount?)


Dropper post cable routing options


Fox CTD Fork



Maxxis’ High Roller 2.3’s are fantastic tires. Definitely a great tire to see stock on a bike at this price point.


The custom Santa Cruz chainslap protector comes standard on all models; not that you’ll need it, with a Shimano SLX Shadow Plus rear derailleur and an ISCG-compatible chain guide mount.


A peek at the VPP design that makes so much of the 5010’s magic possible.


Dang, that’s a pretty bike.


Initial testing has begun.

More Info: Visit | 5010 Review



About Author

Kevin Glover is an outdoorsman living, climbing and biking in Spokane, WA. Originally from the Nevada high desert, he moved to the PNW for its mild winters and allergen-free summers. He has guided throughout the Cascades and Enchantments for Peak 7 Adventures.


  1. Hey Anders,

    Well, I’ll keep it brief. In a word: “fun.” The bike is up for anything and is truly a well-rounded machine. Admittedly it doesn’t have the big squish to descend as well as a dedicated AM machine but, for all that, it’s a surprisingly confident descender thanks to those 27.5″ hoops. VPP and the intermediate geometry cooperate to help the 5010 get up and over nasty technical climbs, too. The groupset has served surprisingly well but I’ve already put a heck of a wobble in the (affordable) rear rim.

    Otherwise, all is well with the 5010 and I’m enjoying my time with it a lot. Keep your eyes open for the full review in good time.

  2. I can’t wait for the full review. I have been riding the EXACT same bike for a few weeks now. The only thing I changed on mine was to switch the front ring setup for a 30T narrow-wide ring and go 1×10. That shaved off a pound.

    If possible, on your full review, focus on the suspension set-up and its climbing ability. Thanks!

  3. TeeKay, that’s a deal. I came off an XC rig that climbed like an absolute stallion, so the 5010’s climbing abilities will definitely be a focus of the review. And VPP is tricky to set up, so I’ll make sure to spend quite a bit of time on the engineering and dynamics behind it.

    Thanks for your interest – how are you liking the bike? I’d love to go to a 1×10 if I had the money. All in good time :)

  4. I’m liking it so far, coming off a steel rigid single speed. I think it climbs quite well for a FS 30-pounder, even out of the saddle. I am still learning to climb seated and with gears.

    My 1×10 was cheap, for only $50, not the uber-expensive XX1. I just removed the FD, shifter, cables, and rings. Replaced them with a single 30t ring up front, using the RaceFace narrow/wide tooth profile. Did not even have to change bolts That combined with the clutch SLX rear derailleur that came with the bike means good chainline and no chain dropping or slapping. All for the $50 cost of the ring. And yes, a bit over 1 pound in weight saving from just removing stuff. That gives me a very decent gear range, much more than the 1 gear I had before.

    I have been playing with the air pressure front and back to get jut the right feel. i want to use all the available travel while avoiding brake dives. Suspension is still a new thing for me.

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