When I first became interested in bikepacking, there was one bike in particular that excited me: the Surly ECR.
Unfortunately, the Americans stopped the production of the ECR after 8 years at the end of 2021. But there were already rumours that Surly was working on a new bike and when the first pictures appeared on Bikepacking.com as part of a product shoot, people quickly started talking about the Surly Fargo.
And today Surly has lifted the curtain and unveiled the new Surly Ghost Grappler.
It is designed as a drop bar trail bike and, according to Surly, has more stack and longer reach than comparable bikes. It is positioned as the ideal bike for singletrack, all-day dirt rides and fast bikepacking tours.
Engineered first and foremost around a comfortable, stable drop-bar hand position, it offers trail-ready geo and impressive tire clearance for lively allday rides on single track, double track, and gravel.
The curved seat stays and the slightly curved seat tube are eye-catching. The frame was made from so-called Natch tube sets, which Surly says are particularly suitable for rougher terrain. In addition, the frame and fork are equipped with sufficient eyelets for all kinds of mounts and cages.
Here are the main features of the Ghost Grappler frameset:
- 100% Surly Chromoly steel frame and fork; 1-1/8″ headtube (non-suspension corrected)
- Double-butted main triangle, plus top tube and down tube gussets for added strength
- Custom dropouts ready to run single-speed or internally geared hub setups
- Surly’s versatile Gnot-Boost rear spacing, allowing riders to run 142mm or 148mm rear hubs
- Front and rear captured thru-axles for ideal stiffness and handling
- Stealth dropper post routing
- Rack and fender compatibility, plus three-pack mounts at the top and bottom of the down tube
- Seatstay-mounted bottle bosses on both sides of frame (not available on XS frame size)
- Five frame sizes to fit nearly every size of rider: XS, Small, Medium, Large, and XL
- Clearance for 29 x 2.1″ and 27.5 x 2.8″ tires (with or without fenders)
The gearing on the Ghost Grappler is the Microshift Advent X 1×11 with an 11-48 cassette. At the front, there is a 32 mm crankset with a Samox crank (Boost).
The brakes are Tektro Mira mechanical brakes on 180/160 Tektro discs.
The wheels have WTB ST i40 rims (32 holes), Novatec Boost hubs and 27.5 x 2.5″ Teravail Ehlai tyres (tubeless).
For the handlebars, Surly chose the Salsa Cowchipper. The saddle is from WTB. The Ghost Grappler comes standard with the TransX YSP15 dropper seatpost, which is mechanically controlled by the handlebars.
According to Surly, the frameset will cost 800 dollars, the complete bike 1,900 dollars.
The weight of the bike is not yet officially known to me. But those who buy Surly tend not to pay attention to the weight. I don’t know the official system weight yet either, but it’s supposed to be around 160kg.
The Ghost Grappler is somewhat reminiscent of the 8bar TFLSBERG, or vice versa.In any case, it’s an exciting bike with which Surly is actually making a Fargo-like offer and creating a worthy successor to the ECR.
I hope to be able to test it soon and then report more about agility, trail suitability and bikepacking design.