Giant Anthem X3 - Is this the best value mountain bike in the world?

Maybe... That's a pretty big call, but I recently picked this little beauty up for 30% off. At full RRP its probably still good value, but at 30% off it is exceptional value. For less than AUD$1700 its pretty hard to beat.

Side view of 2010 Giant Anthem X3

What's the best part?

The frame

Front view of 2010 Giant Anthem X3

Without a doubt, the best thing about the Anthem X is the frame. All of the aluminium Anthem X's share the same hydro-formed ALUXX SL-grade aluminum frame (the Anthem X Advanced series features a full carbon fiber frame). Giant claims this is the lightest aluminium full suspension frame they have ever made.

That may be true, but aside from the weight claim, what makes this frame really nice is that it climbs and descends so well and feels fantastically efficient pedaling on the flat.

The suspension setup is great with about 15-20% sag. At 25% sag I found the rear would eat up its travel too quickly. No harsh bottoming but it didn't inspire you to "go big".

For a lightweight frame it feels amazingly stiff. The rear wheel tracks nicely over angled log crossings. You just don't feel any flex.

4" of rear wheel travel is not a lot, but if anything, when properly setup the rear feels like a longer travel bike.

Assorted details

What length fork steerer tube is needed for a large frame 2010 Anthem X?

The minimum length is 195mm, but anything longer than 215mm will give you some cockpit adjustability.

What size rear shock does the Anthem X use?

Rear shock size on all Anthem X's is 165mm eye to eye and 38mm stroke (6.5 x 1.5" in imperial).

The rebound and compression tune specced on Fox shocks used by Giant on the Anthem X is medium rebound and medium compression.

Component weights

I bought the Anthem X3 to use the frame. As a result I pulled all of the components off it and weighed many of them:

ComponentWeight (g)
Giant 30.9 seatpost317
Fizik Tundra saddle257
Giant seatpost clamp24
Giant connect stem167
Giant riser bars325
Fox F100RL fork1575
Shimano front disc brake (lever, hose, caliper, pads, bolts)319
Shimano SM-RT51 disc rotor145
SLX shadow rear derailleur262
HG50 9 speed cassette438
Michelin Wildgripper 2.0 folding tyre600
Rear wheel1316
Deore crankset882

Related articles:

Giant Anthem X0

Another Giant Anthem X in the family, this time using a 2009 Anthem X0 medium sized frame. As you'd expect, there are some special tweaks:

Anthem X Limited

Frame is large and without shock but with all shock mounting hardware, headset cups and derailleur hanger it weighs 2221g.

Anthem shock tunes

This is a collection of shock tunes I have seen on Anthem X 26" and 29" bikes.

Giant Anthem 0 (2007)

This is the first iteration of the Giant Anthem with the maestro linkage and gets 3.5" of suspension travel out of a 152mm x 32mm (6.0 x 1.25") shock. 

Anthem X shock removal

There is no need to remove your cranks. You can get access to the lower shock bolt using a short 5mm allen key. If you don't have one, then just cut a spare allen key down:

Giant Anthem X lightweight build

I started with a Giant Anthem X3 2010 on runout that was cheaper to buy than a frame-only Anthem X. Other than the frame, there is nothing left.