Scott has today unveiled its brand new Addict Gravel, deepening its commitment to the off-road medium and showing impressive technical leaps forward with optimised weight, aerodynamics and comfort.
The Swiss brand has a long lineage in mountain bikes, and with the recent trend toward road bikes that can do far more than simply tarmac, we’ve been hoping to see Scott mix its on and off-road expertise for years.
When we first laid eyes on the new Scott Addict Gravel, it was immediately obvious that this was the fusion of bike platforms that we had been waiting for.
Cutting a new figure
For those unfamiliar with Scott, the brand is something of a giant of outdoor gear, having been first to the mark many times throughout its history. Scott developed the first tapered aluminium ski poles, the first aerodynamic handlebars, the first road bike frame to weigh less than a kilo and the first mass production frame and fork to weigh less than a kilogram.
That’s one reason why Scott calls its development team, 'The Carbon Experts', and this new Scott Addict Gravel showcases that carbon know-how.
Rouleur's Emilio Previtali at the Scott launch in Fribourg
The last generation Scott Addict Gravel cut a pretty similar silhouette to the road-faring version of the bike, while this new iteration is immediately distinct as a dedicated gravel and adventure bike.
"Our goal from day one was to build an ultimate gravel bike that you can take on any adventure," William Juban, Head of Road Bike Engineering at SCOTT says. "One bike that can do it all. The result is what we believe to be the fastest, most capable, and most fun gravel bike on the market."
Scott's new Addict Gravel has a palpably different geometry to its predecessor
That’s been borne out in 45mm tyre clearance on 700C wheels, 40mm with mudguards mounted, 160mm rotors (switchable to 180mm on the front), luggage mount positions on the top tube alongside lower bottle cage mounts to anticipate a frame luggage, and compatibility with 1x or 2x drivetrains.
At the same time, Scott’s laser-focused performance mantra on the road shines through as the frame uses fully internal cabling for a supremely clean and aerodynamic front-end. The frame also employs Scott’s patented aerofoil design for its tube shapes, as used on the Addict and Foil RC frames. At times that may seem at odds with the leisurely and long nature of gravel riding, but as anyone who’s faced a 30mph headwind on a big gravel race day knows, every watt matters.
Impressively, that’s all done while keeping the frame weight down to 930g and the fork down to a slim 395g.
The final element of the design to receive a substantial update has been the geometry, which has seen the frame become taller and longer, resulting in a slightly longer stack and reach across most sizes. That comes alongside a higher BB height to anticipate the Addict’s more adventure-based orientation. However, the frame also has a more compact profile as a result of a lower toptube compared to the BB, offering some minor gains in stiffness.
We were lucky enough to be able to test the bike first-hand in Fribourg, Switzerland, at the international launch. We rode the Scott Addict Gravel Tuned, which is the range-topping model, complete with DT Swiss carbon wheels and a Sram Red AXS groupset.
From the outset, the bike had a reactive road bike character that brought to mind Scott’s long lineage in endurance race bikes.
Scott has always designed with stiffness and efficiency in mind, and the Addict Gravel has a direct, pleasing reaction to putting down the power that we’d expect from a thoroughbred sprinter. As is often the case with gravel bikes, that rigid frame construction is nicely offset by the bike’s wide tyres run at low pressure. However, even when running higher tyre pressures, it was obvious that the frame and fork were adept at absorbing the bumps and impacts of the road.
For our part, the geometry hit an excellent sweet spot, able to lend itself to a low and fast position, while also being tall and relaxed enough that when soft-pedalling on smooth gravel tracks it felt as though we could ride all day.
Off the peg, the top-tier Addict Gravel 20 will come set up with Sram Red AXS 2x, which offers enough gearing options for hard road riding while also providing the range of gearing needed for super steep rocky ascents. We tried a 2x and a 1x setup on the launch event. When riding 1x, we were impressed with Scott’s integrated chain-guide solution, as even with Sram’s clutched derailleur, chain drops are always a risk when riding challenging off-road terrain, and the solution was a neat one. For our part, we would be interested to try a 1x Sram 10-50 Eagle setup, as a little less weight, maintenance and clutter at the front derailleur mount would really compliment the Addict’s versatility and tip it more into true adventure territory.
The Addict gravel boasts impressive 45mm tyre clearance. Pictured here is the GRX-equipped Addict Gravel 30
Scott has long since enjoyed a healthy relationship with DT Swiss, and the DT Swiss GRC1400 wheels, which with a 42mm depth and 28mm external width, offered a combination of aerodynamic efficiency and a wide, hookless rim bed to experiment with low pressures on tubeless tyres.
On the whole, it was impressive to see Scott finally combine years of mountain bike and road expertise into a bike that very much hits all the latest trends in all-road riding.
We look forward to spending a little more time with the Scott, both in racey gravel environments and also for multi-day adventures between road, gravel and anything beyond.
Discover more about the Scott Addict Gravel here.