The Spark 50 takes Scott’s world-champion-pedigree racing frames and lowers the price without lowering the performance. This bike was originally
designed for the fastest cross-country racers in the world,
and it shows in the ride quality. This latest generation of
the Spark gets additional travel, adjustable geometry and a
user-friendly TwinLoc lever to make it a trail-worthy
machine rather than a purebred race whip.
WHAT IS IT MADE FROM?
The Spark 50 uses a 6061 alloy with heavily manipulated tubes to tune the ride quality. The frame sports 4. 7
inches of travel front and rear, with the option to lock
both out simultaneously with the custom TwinLoc lever.
WHICH COMPONENTS STAND OUT?
The TwinLoc lever is the heart of this bike. The lever
works well when set up properly, allowing the rider to
switch between a 4.7-inch trailbike and a hardtail with the
flip of a switch. The Spark’s wheel and
tire combo gives the bike a snappy feel,
especially when climbing. The component
mix bests most of the group, sporting a complete Shimano SLX and XT package and offering
the lightest wheel and tire combo in the shootout.
WHAT DID THE CREW SAY?
• Very impressive frame-tube
• Shock is difficult to
tune. The rebound
adjustment has a
crossover effect and
firms the compression
adjustment at the
• A full front and
rear lockout is a good
thing on some trails,
but not all.
• When climbing in the open mode, this bike had the
most suspension bob in the group. This is not a set-it-and-forget-it bike.
TRICKS, UPGRADES OR TIPS?
Be careful when setting up the TwinLoc lever,
because the suspension needs the lockout to climb
efficiently. This is a small bone to pick, but the large
grips will only make those with big hands happy.
The Scott has the most racy feel in the shootout. It’s
low and long and still has enough plush suspension for
attacking downhills. Compared to the other bikes, it
feels the most glued to the trail when pushing it on the
descents. Where it falls a little short is handling steeper
descents; the geometry doesn’t seem to lend itself to
all-mountain riding. But for the cross-country rider
looking for some extra comfort, this is a great bike. ;
Scott Spark 50
Finding the Spark for singletrack
Fast out of the gate: This is the lightest bike in the shootout, and the components have a lot to do with it. The suspension is air sprung
front and rear, the wheels and tires are super light, and the Shimano XT/SRAM drivetrain and Avid brakes provide performance that’s up to