FIRST RIDE REPORT
POLYGON SISKIU T8
Words by Drew Rohde
As soon as we pulled the new Polygon Siskiu T8 out of the box we knew there was some cool stuff going on. The metallic flake, rich purple and color-changing downtube made this poised 135mm/140mm mountain bike look good standing still. At 5’11” we ordered a size large Siskiu T8 and felt it was the appropriate size for our riding style. Polygon’s North American distributor, bikesonline.com has a great sizing guide that can be helpful and ensure you pick the right size if you’re unsure which way to go.
We recently rode a Siskiu in our Budget Bike Shootout and Giveaway just a couple months ago and found it to be one of the most fun riding bikes in our group in its 27.5” iteration. In fact it was Sourpatch’s top pick for the shootout. The new Polygon Siskiu is now available in two wheel sizes depending on frame size, the large and XL come with 29” wheels while the medium frame can run either 29 or 27.5”, and the small size will come with 27.5” wheels.
While there are countless new things to check out when it comes to the new Siskiu, one of the most important things and something fans will be thrilled about is Polygon’s commitment to budget-minded riders.
On the trail we certainly noticed the changes to the bike’s geometry as well as the larger wheels. We still want to spend some more time tweaking with the suspension settings, but felt that even if the shock tune and suspension design weren’t that much better at pedaling that its predecessor, the geometry undeniably helped get us into a more efficient and comfortable platform. Still, it doesn’t climb like some other higher end bikes in the same travel category, yet. Stay tuned for a long term review and possible suspension upgrades to see if we can’t wake this thing up even more!
When it came time to ride this bike the way we see most Polygon’s getting ridden on Instagram, ruthlessly aggressive, we forgot how much we loved the purple and started focusing on how much we liked the way it snapped around corners. With a 335mm bottom bracket heigh, 430mm chainstays and a wheelbase of 1,220mm, this thing is a blast to snap, flick and shralp. The reach on our size large is 480mm and the 65.5-degree head tube angle worked well to put us in a well-balanced and neutral riding position whether we were spinning hard on the pedals in the seat on traversing bits of trail, or standing up to charge high speed descents.
Although the bike is a blast on smoother trails, while jibbing, popping and jumping, we’ve not yet found our happy spot with the suspension after just two rides. We plan on continuing our quest to make this bike handle the hits as well as it does everything else but we’ve just not had enough time to get there yet. We hope that with some more tuning, and possibly adding some volume reducers we can get this bike to open up and smoothen out rougher terrain. It is definitely an improvement over the previous Siskiu we rode, but we want more in terms of square-edge hits and bump absorption on chattery trails.
Overall, our first impression of the new Polygon Siskiu T8 has been good but not perfect. The bike is a solid value, looks so good and is more than capable to be ridden at a very high level. We hauled some serious ass on this bike down some of Central Oregon’s favorite trails, but our hands were a bit more tired than usual due to the suspension feedback. With a bit more time we hope to get that sorted. If you don’t spend a lot of time riding washboards, roots, or square-edge terrain then you’ll really want to consider looking at this bike sooner than later as inventory could be gone sooner than later due to COVID’s crazy bike sale side effect.
The Polygon Siskiu T8 excels in tight terrain, at high speeds, and most definitely in the turns! It is a blast to lean this bike over let the back end drift and catch or just getting out and spinning through the trees on flowy singletrack.
Stay tuned for a full review coming after some more tweaking, tuning and riding.