2022 ENDURO SHOOTOUT
FEZZARI LA SAL PEAK REVIEW
THE EVERY MAN’S ENDURO BIKE
Photos by Dusten Ryen
Shootout Sponsored by Maxxis Tires & Fox Racing
Fezzari is a brand that has slowly grown to occupy a solid spot in the mountain bike market. With their bikes improving steadily since they came onto the scene, it makes sense that the newest batch are getting close to some of the most established manufacturers out there. With budgets to match nearly every rider out there, their direct-to-consumer strategy is a compelling one. But is their 170mm travel La Sal Peak up to the task of modern enduro riding and racing? We were excited to find out in our 2022 Enduro Bike Shootout as we put the new bike to the test to create this comprehensive Fezzarri La Sal Peak Review
We’d like to thank Fox Racing and Maxxis Tires for their support in making this series possible. Without their partnership these types of projects wouldn’t be possible, if you feel so inclined, offer them a thanks down below! And while you’re at it check out Fox’s new 2023 Product Line and Maxxis’ performance MTB tires here.
• 170mm Tetralink Suspension
• HTA 64
• STA 77.5 (effective)
• REACH 485mm (Large)
Price: $3,999 (Comp) – $8,499 (Team)
Prior to the Enduro Bike Shootout, we spent a good amount of time on Fezzari’s La Sal Peak, including the production of a video for our Dissected Series. We covered the details extensively in there, including spending some time with Fezzari employees to get the full low down on the La Sal Peak, so we’ll keep things a little briefer here.
The new La Sal Peak is an overbuilt carbon frame designed to greatly exceed DH-level strength tests, and sporting 170mm of suspension driven by their Tetralink Horst link setup. There is a high-low flip chip that takes the geometry from enduro-focused to something a bit more trail oriented, while leaving the suspension performance essentially unchanged. Speaking of suspension performance, the Tetralink Horst link rear end on the La Sal Peak packs leverage progression of 21.5% to give coil or air compatibility. There’s around 110% anti squat in all cogs to give a good pedaling compromise of support and compliance, and relatively high 93% anti-rise to preserve geometry at the expense of some comfort when braking in the rough.
On the geometry front, I’ll be focusing on the Low position, as it’s the one more suited to the rigors of enduro racing, assuming the terrain is there. The head angle sits at 64°, which is bang-on for the vast majority of bikes in this category now. Fezzari touts their steep actual seat tube angle, and the effective measures in at 77.5°, which is pretty ideal for modern bike fit. In the size large we tested, reach and stack are 485mm and 630mm, which both fall in the middle of our spread amongst the bikes in our roundup. The La Sal Peak does not have size-specific rear center lengths, so everything from small to extra-large comes with a 437mm chainstay.
Fezzari’s configuration platform allows for tons of build options, but we can only speak to the one that showed up at our doorstep. A 23-point Custom Setup ensures that every customer is given the size of components that should lead to the most ergonomic fit on the bike – a move that is quite unique thanks to Fezzari’s a la carte philosophy. The spec tested is a high-end collection of somewhat unusual parts and is by no means the budget build. With an estimated retail of $8,084, you get EXT suspension front and rear, a Crankbrothers Synthesis carbon wheelset, TRP DHR EVO brakes, a SRAM GX AXS drivetrain, Fezzari cockpit, and a PNW dropper post. Something of an eclectic group, but that’s the beauty of an a-la-carte builder, where you can choose exactly what you want to run, avoiding the need to swap parts after you’ve received the bike. Due to the wide variability in build kits, system weight of the La Sal Peak can fall on a pretty wide spectrum, but ours tipped the scales at 33.4 pounds with a suitably enduro-ready parts spec. Both the frame and the components look pretty solid on paper, but how do things shake out on trail?
Our initial impressions while hopping between all these different bikes was just how different two 170mm bikes can feel from each other. The La Sal Peak consistently served as the barometer for the most “trail bike” feeling end of that spectrum, which probably speaks to its adaptability. Though you can get it spec’d with air suspension of various sorts, ours came from Fezzari with the EXT Era V2 air fork and Storia LOK coil shock, which both have a distinct feel that differs from a lot of the other options on the market. That linear coil feel struck me as a critical companion to the La Sal Peak, assuming you’re going to be racing this bike. The suspension is very supportive and could get overwhelmed in longer rough patches of trail and on big hits, unless aided by the excellent damping of the EXT kit. By no means would the bike be a slouch with other suspension, but the platform feels less forgiving than the other bikes on test when you’re pushing it at the edge of ability.
That sportier feel is part of why this bike is possibly the best pedaling platform we have on test, assuming efficiency is your goal. Things are snappy and supportive, with just enough traction to get up technical sections, and overall weight feels (and measures) low. Those characteristics are a big part of why the La Sal Peak would suit many folks who aren’t necessarily in the market for a big 170mm travel rig, but perhaps are looking for something more in the 140-150 range. That said, the descending performance might be a bit more in keeping with bikes of that travel bracket as well, at least compared to the others on test.
Part of the slightly more nervous downhill performance of the Fezzari comes down to some geo choices that give it its better all-round feel. One of those is the bottom bracket height, with a measured drop of 26.4mm. This is actually pretty neutral amongst all the bikes, but coupled with the very supportive suspension platform, it can feel like you’re a bit higher on the bike than you might want to be in steep and fast corners. Adding to that sensation are the relatively short chainstays, at least relative to the reach in the larger sizes. The high balance point feel, and short back end can make it feel like the bike wants to stand up in moments when you wish it would plow out, but that’s also part of what keeps it fun and nimble in other use cases. Bike geometry is always a matter of compromises, and where the La Sal Peak gives in ultimate aggressive capabilities, it takes with its all-rounder friendliness.
The Wolf’s Last Word
To wrap up our Fezzari La Sal Peak Review, we decided that our general take-away is that this is the bike most people would be happy to ride most days, because the terrain and speeds most folks have access to don’t necessitate the utmost downhill capability. The Fezzari La Sal Peak is just as happy climbing all day as it is descending gnarly tracks, and some combination of all the above is probably where it shines best.
Price as Tested: $8,084
Weight: 33.4 lbs
Frame: Cleancast Carbon Fiber; 170mm
Fork: EXT ERA V2 170mm
Shock: EXT Storia LOK 230×65
Brakes: TRP DH-R EVO
Handlebar: Fezzari Team 35
Stem: Fezzari Charger CNC
Headset: Cane Creek 40-Series ZS
Seatpost: PNW Loam Dropper
Saddle: Ergon SM10
Wheelset: Crankbrothers Synthesis Carbon
Front tire: Maxxis Assegai, 29 x 2.5″, 3C compound, EXO+
Rear tire: Maxxis Minion DHR II, 29 x 2.4″, EXO+
Bottom Bracket: SRAM Dub Threaded
Cassette: SRAM XG 1295; 10-52T
Cranks: SRAM Descendant Carbon, 32T, 170mm
Shifter: SRAM GX AXS Eagle; 12s
Derailleur: SRAM GX AXS Eagle; 12s
Excellent pedaling platform
Full-range build kit options
Wide range of ability, coil vs. air
Not as planted as others
Over-the-bike ride feel
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