Still unlisted on the Cannondale website is this ridiculously stealth Scalpel ULTIMATE 29er. The guys at Freshbikes debuted one of the first Scalpel 29 complete builds back a few months ago here, and now have their hands on one of the few Ultimate models available globally. First covered here, this bike has finally hit showroom floors. Check out a few detail shots and some component highlights after the break.
For the last few years Cannondale has had an “Ultimate” model topping off the range for a few of their bicycle categories; the latest edition to this premier collection is the Scalpel Ultimate 29er. At an impressive 21.2lbs(9.61kg) with inner tubes, this setup is extremely light for a stock build. Removing the tubes and adding sealant to this rig could easily bring it to the 20-20.5lb mark. The mountain bike product management team from Cannondale really went all out for this one. Differences between the Ultimate model and the Scalpel 1 are primarily component spec changes, but there is a very small frame detail that can make a significant impact.
As you can see, the paint job for this bike is quite minimalist. Now that bike frames are getting lighter and lighter, paint jobs seem to be making a significant impact on the overall weight of the finished product. The devil is always in the details, and this setup is no exception. Removing the white paint seen on the Scalpel 1 model, and keeping with extremely simple and streamlined decals saves precious grams throughout the frame.
The component group on this setup is top range front to back. Shimano XTR components take over most of the build on this bike, with the addition of a Cannondale SI SL Hollowgram crank arm set. The spider, chainrings, and front derailleur all happen to be XX. The Ultimate build also comes with this slick tubeless carbon fiber wheelset. Enve XC carbon rims, white DT aerolite spokes, DT 240 rear hub, and a white Cannondale lefty front hub make up the wheelset.
Additional spec changes from the Scalpel 1 model up to the Ultimate version also include this carbon flat bar from Enve. Not shown here are a set of extremely light foam grips from Cannondale.
Additional upgrades include a carbon Fizik seatpost, and a matching full carbon Tundra 00 saddle. Suspension remains the same on this model as on the Scalepel 1, with a Lefty XLR carbon up front and a Fox RP23 in the rear. At an initial price of $11,000 this bike isn’t exactly the most inexpensive bike available, but it would be extremely difficult to custom-build a similar setup for less. Considering the complete package, this bike is worth the 5 digit price tag.