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Handlebars are one of the most important parts on your bike as they are one of three touch points. A good set of handlebars can change the feel of your bike out on the trail. Read on to learn about ENVE's M5 handlebar and one riders thoughts on them.
The ENVE M5 Carbon bar is a premium handlebar. I have ridden this carbon bar for over a month and I have to say that I am pleased on the gains it has given me. This is not your traditional XC mountain handlebar.
I have been always around 720mm bars and at the beginning of this year I bought a new Scott Scale that had a 740mm handlebar alloy bar. This one being a 760mm wide I was a little skeptical at first, but I decided to try it out on my local trails to see how it performs. In case I found it uncomfortable I can always cut it to my preferred length. The first day I felt my shoulders hurt a bit but that didn’t shy me away because I knew it was part of the adaptation process. Two rides later I was loving them, and I don’t see the necessity to chop them down. That extra width gives me more confidence on the downhills and better performance overall.
Due to quarantine I have been riding a lot on my local trails which are predominantly rocky. On the stiffness department I didn’t felt a dramatic change and I’m glad they still use the traditional 31.8 diameter stem. On the other hand, I did feel it had more compliance and it was more forgiving and transmits less chatter from the trails.
As many of you may know ENVE is a premium carbon components manufacturer. With that comes a hefty price tag for this handlebar and you would expect to get what you paid for, and it did. Many XC handlebars are the traditional 720mm and have nothing special or something that sets them apart. Also, they are around $120 to $150. On the other hand, this ENVE handlebar costs around $170. So, for a $20 difference you can get the best of the best.
The bar includes a set of stickers to match it to the color scheme of your bike and fortunately this stock grey/white matches the color scheme of my bike. This is great if eventually you want to upgrade your bike and the color scheme changes. I absolutely love the finish on this component, but when installing watch out for the carbon resin that can get scratched up if you don’t clean the cockpit components. So be careful when installing the brake levers, shifters, Lockouts, etc.
For the weight weenies out there, this is not the lightest carbon handlebar, and this wasn’t a priority for me. Obviously, out of the box, it feels way more lighter than the stock Syncros alloy bars it was replacing. I bought it for the claimed performance gains, and they delivered.
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