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Deciding which bike is right for you depends, first and foremost, on determining what you need your bike to do. If you are a rider looking specifically for a dedicated, competition-level, downhill mountain bike, the Mega 275 Comp Bike from Nukeproof Bikes may be right up your alley.
Those looking for a more versatile bike may want to look elsewhere. Our comparison of several Nukeproof models and a competitor should be very helpful in either case.
What Are Nukeproof Bikes?
Founded in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in 1990, Nuke Proof Industries, makers of Nukeproof bikes, was formed by passionate mountain biker Jon Muenzenmeyer, who saw the need for innovative, reliable products that met the needs of serious, practical mountain bikers. Since that time, Nukeproof bikes have earned a dedicated following that consists of professional racers and hardcore enthusiasts alike.
While Nukeproof Bikes’ unforgiving and purpose-built designs may not appeal to all riders, those riders that fall within Nukeproof’s target demographic swear by their bikes. Many professionals have ridden Nukeproof bikes into the winner’s circle, a testimony to these high-end machines’ take-no-prisoners downhill performance.
The Nukeproof Bikes Mega 275 Comp Bike features top-of-line, race-ready specs, including a custom, triple-butted hydro-formed tube set; a RockShox Yari 170 mm suspension fork; a RockShox Super Deluxe R ML1 rear shock; Nukeproof Neutron 27.5” wheels, front and back; Michelin Wild Enduro 27.5” tires; an SRAM NX Eagle 12-speed crankset, drivetrain, and cassette; SRAM Guide T brakes with SRAM Centreline rotors; Nukeproof Neutron handlebars and stem, and a Nukeproof Horizon SL saddle.
Available for around $2,000, the Nukeproof Mega 275 is the most expensive bike we looked at for this review, but one could certainly spend much, much more on a top-of-the-line, competition-level bike from a different manufacturer.
How It Compares
We picked a few similar products available on the market to see how they compare.
- Nukeproof Digger Comp Bike
- Nukeproof Scout 275 Comp Bike
- Diamondback Bicycles Atroz Comp Full Suspension Mountain Bike
Nukeproof Mega 275 Comp Bike
Designed to be the ultimate bike for downhill riding, the Nukeproof Mega 275 is a professional competition bike that is no stranger to the winner’s podium.
The Nukeproof Bikes Mega 275 Comp Bike can be found for around $1,900 and up, making it the most expensive bike we tested for this specific review.
Features: 5 stars
The Nukeproof Bikes Mega 275 Comp is designed to be the ultimate bike for the ultimate downhill racing. It features a frame of Nukeproof Mega 275 alloy with a custom triple-butted hydro-formed tube set. You get a RockShox Yari Chargr RC 170 mm fork; a RockShox Deluxe R ML1 rear shock; Michelin Wild Enduro 27.5” tires, and SRAM NX components as well.
Comfort & Performance: 3.5 Stars
Comfort is not a major consideration when it comes to the Mega 275 Comp from Nukeproof Bikes. This bike is all about performance. And, as a competition-level downhill racer, that’s exactly how it should be. For that reason, we decided to provide separate scores for comfort and performance on this model: 2 stars for comfort, but the maximum 5 for performance.
Design Quality: 5 stars
If you’re looking for a competition-ready downhill racer, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better, more thoughtful design than the Nukeproof Bikes Mega 275 Comp delivers. This bike’s design is all about optimum performance with zero compromises, and that’s exactly what it delivers.
Warranty: 4 stars
Nukeproof Bikes traditionally has offered a 2-year warranty on Nukeproof frames, but they have recently increased the length of coverage to 5 years for model years 2016 and later (original owner only; excludes DH models). Nukeproof components are covered by a 2-year warranty. Nukeproof also includes one year of “Nukeproof Protection.”
- Built for pure racing performance
- New model includes a stiffer chassis and updated race geometry
- No stranger to the winner’s podium
- No front derailleur means the Mega 275 is limited to 12 speeds
- Limited versatility other than as a downhill racer
- May be too hard core in its design for the casual rider
Nukeproof Digger Comp Bike
The Digger Comp from Nukeproof Bikes is designed to be a versatile training bike that can handle everything from roads to rough trails. While inspired by the simplicity of training bikes, the Digger Comp also features rack mounts, and it can accommodate panniers or mud guards, making this a bike that truly can handle it all.
We found the Nukeproof Bikes Digger Comp available for about $1,350.
Features: 4.5 stars
Taking a page from the training bikes that inspired its design, the Digger Comp from Nukeproof Bikes takes a no-nonsense approach to its components, while still offering top-end performance where it counts. The Digger Comp features a custom, triple-butted, hydro-formed alloy frame; a Nukeproof Digger carbon fork, and WTB Sendero Road Plus tires. It sports an SRAM Apex 11-speed drivetrain and crankset; an SRAM Powerglide 1130 cassette; and SRAM Apex Hydro brakes and rotors.
If you happen to be in the market for a suspension-less training bike with top-of-the-line mountain bike shifters and brakes, then this might be the perfect bike for you.
Comfort & Performance: 4.5 stars
More than other Nukeproof bikes that are based solely around performance, the Digger Comp Bike is comfortable enough to cover some heavy mileage without sacrificing that legendary Nukeproof Bikes performance.
Design Quality: 4.5 stars
With a design inspired by the simplicity of athlete training bikes but incorporating the braking and drivetrain performance of competition-level mountain bikes, the Digger Comp from Nukeproof Bikes features a thoughtful design that can be further customized for a range of specific uses.
Warranty: 4 stars
Nukeproof Bikes traditionally has offered a 2-year warranty on Nukeproof bike frames, but they have recently increased the length to 5 years for model years 2016 and later. This applies to the original owner only and excludes DH models. Nukeproof components are also covered by a 2-year warranty.
- Combines no-nonsense training bike features with high-end mountain bike components for a truly unique riding experience
- Versatile performer does well on roads and trails alike
- Accommodates a variety of panniers, racks, and mudflaps for added versatility
- Some riders may opt for a more conventional design
- Despite its versatility, fulfills something of a niche need
- Lacks front and rear suspension
Nukeproof Scout 275 Comp Bike
Incorporating a longer geometry to accommodate taller riders without sacrificing control during high-speed descents, the Nukeproof Bikes Scout 275 is a solid, versatile, hardtail mountain bike that provides enough comfort for long cross-country rides and enough performance to handle tough climbs and slaloms.
The Nukeproof Scout 275 Comp Bike is available for about $1,400.
Features: 4 stars
The Nukeproof Bikes Scout 275 features quality components, including a RockShox Revelation RC 140 mm fork; a Shimano SLX M6000 crankset; a Shimano SLX 11-Speed Shadow Plus drivetrain; Shimano SLX M7000 brakes, and Maxxis Minion DHF 27.5” tires.
Comfort & Performance: 4 stars
With the newer model incorporating a longer geometry for taller riders, the Nukeproof Bikes Scout 275 combines comfort and performance, resulting in a solid all-around performer. While some riders may prefer a full-suspension mountain bike to a hardtail, the Scout 275 strikes an appropriate balance between providing a smooth ride and allowing a good feel for the trail.
Design Quality: 4 stars
Nukeproof Bikes was founded with a mission of designing and building straightforward, reliable, versatile bikes, and the Scout 275 is no exception. The Nukeproof Scout 275 provides a solid, reliable ride that is likely to stay that way for years to come.
Warranty: 4 stars
Nukeproof Bikes traditionally offered a 2-year warranty on Nukeproof bike frames, but they recently increased the length of this coverage to 5 years for model years 2016 and later (original owner only; excludes DH models). Nukeproof components are covered by a 2-year warranty, and Nukeproof also includes 1 year of its signature “Nukeproof Protection.”
- Shimano SLX components are smooth and reliable, even on tough climbs
- Longer geometry increases comfort for taller riders
- Comfortable enough for cross-country rides with performance features that conquer high-speed descents
- Some riders may prefer a full-suspension mountain bike
- Riders who focus on cross-country or downhill riding may want a more specialized bike for that purpose
Diamondback Bicycles Atroz 3 Full Suspension Mountain Bike
The Atroz 3 full-suspension mountain bike from Diamond Bicycles offers a lower-cost, but still a highly capable alternative, to the all-out, high-performance specs of bikes such as the Nukeproof Mega 275 Comp bike.
The Diamondback Atroz 3 is available on Amazon for around $1,400.
Features: 4 stars
Despite its midrange cost, the Atrox 3 still carries a very solid array of features, including an Atroz 6061 T-6 aluminum frame; a RockShox Recon RL fork; a RockShox Monarch R rear shock; an SRAM NX X-Horizon rear derailleur with SRAM NX 11-speed shifter, and Shimano MT200 hydraulic disc brakes.
Comfort & Performance: 3.5 stars
While not seeking to provide the high-end racing performance of the competition-level Nukeproof bikes, the Diamondback does provide better comfort, which may be preferable for more casual riders.
Design Quality: 3.5 stars
Diamondback has combined the durability and performance of an 11-speed drivetrain and combined it with a smooth, full-suspension ride to create a bike that is at once reliable and easy to ride. However, this Diamondback design lacks the inspired elements that set Nukeproof bikes apart.
Warranty: 4 stars
On its full-suspension bikes like the Atroz 3, Diamondback Bikes offers a 5-year warranty on the front triangle and a 1-year warranty on the swing arm. Diamondback-branded forks and components carry a 1-year warranty as well, while other components are covered by the warranties of their respective manufacturers.
- Casual riders may be glad to sacrifice some performance for increased comfort
- Offers high-performance features and design at a reasonable price
- Some riders less concerned with downhill performance may want more than 11 speeds
- Aluminum frames are not considered as high-performance or as durable as carbon frames
- Some riders may prefer a more versatile bike to this downhill specialist
Conclusion: 5 Stars for the Mega 275 Comp Bike
If you’re looking for a no-compromises, competition-level, dedicated downhill racer at a surprisingly attainable price point, the Nukeproof Mega 275 Comp bike is definitely worth a long look. However, for the vast majority of mountain bikers, who regularly incorporate climbs and cross-country elements into their ride, a more versatile, less specialized bike may be preferable.
Among the bikes we tested for this review, the Nukeproof Digger Comp Bike is the most versatile, handling paved roads and packed trails with equal aplomb. It also includes rack mounts that allow for a host of customization options not available on the models specifically dedicated to high-speed downhill racing. Based on the simplified, straightforward design of training bikes, the Digger features high-end mountain bike shifters and brakes for a truly unique hybrid design.
Overall, the Nukeproof bikes we evaluated lived up to their reputation for a take-no-prisoners approach to downhill speed. True to their founder’s mission, Nukeproof bikes are hard-core mountain-bikers mountain bikes, forgoing some frills, comforts, and conveniences found on other bikes while keeping their vision focused squarely on offering elite performance. Nukeproof bikes are painstakingly crafted to squeeze every last bit of performance out of the effort the rider puts in, and it definitely shows in each bike’s feel and responsiveness, as well as through their regular appearances on winners’ podiums.
While certainly not for the casual cyclist or even serious riders who prefer a jack-of-all-trades-type bike to a highly specialized one, Nukeproof acknowledges from the outset that its bikes are not intended to be everything to everyone, a somewhat rare approach that what allows them the freedom to create some of the most competitive downhill racing bikes on the market.
Perhaps other manufacturers in the bike industry and elsewhere could learn a lesson from the Nukeproof approach to design. Instead of trying to please every possible rider, which often ends up in a mediocre product, Nukeproof was founded by a hardcore mountain biker who wanted to make bikes for people just like him.
The fact that Nukeproof Bikes is nearing its 30th year in business is a strong testament to this approach, and the company delivers amazing bikes overall.