Cannondale Rush 3 XC Full Suspension

4.68/5 (206 Reviews)

Product Description

  • Frame: Rush, 110 mm
  • Fork: Lefty Speed Bonded DLR2, 110 mm
  • Rear Shock: FOX Float RP23
  • Rims: Mavic CrossLand UST
  • Pedals: CrankBrothers Egg Beater
  • Crank: FSA Afterburner MegaExo
  • Chain: Shimano 9-speed
  • Bottom Bracket: FSA Afterburner MegaExo
  • Shifters: SRAM X-7 Trigger
  • Handlebars: FSA XC-281AOS, 25 mm rise
  • Stem: Cannondale XC3 Si, 31.8 mm

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Reviews 1 - 15 (206 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Vinnie

Date Reviewed: March 19, 2013

Strengths:    Light weight and climbs like a goat but also descends great for an xc bike. The lefty is amazing especially with it's lockout feature

Weaknesses:    LOW BOTTOM BRACKET!!

Bottom Line:   
This was my first mountain bike and is still my current ride 6 years later. This bike is phenomenal all around. Climbing is a breeze, steering is quick and the lefty works like a charm. Over my 6 years of ownership there is not on stock part on the bike besides, well, the frame itself. My only beefs with this bike in its STOCK form are 1) the CST tires are too narrow 2) mechanical brakes are finicky and my last gripe (which is just solved by using a 2 ring crank w/ bash guard) is the low bottom bracket. I hit the bottom bracket big ring on rocks and log crossing far too often but with the bash guard and 2x9 drivetrain its no problem at all. Over all this bike is fantastic for a beginner to an expert.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by K-Lubb G.

Date Reviewed: October 28, 2012

Strengths:    I got this bike about a year ago on Craigslist. I ride this bike hard. Pushing it to its limits. I am constantly being amazed with its life. I have cased 30 foot jumps time and time again, even bottoming out the front and rear shock, and I am always able to pick up the bike and ride on. It is extremely versatile some days I ride strict XC and others I do some tech downhill and it handles it all incredibly. The frame is solid, it is relatively light and it handles great.

Weaknesses:    My front left fork has been leaking oil. It doesn’t seem to effect the performance, but its a hassle having to constantly wipe up the oil of the stanchions. It has an invert front fork and I am constantly being asked whether I put it on backwards! I will probably buy a new front fork considering its leak. I also got the 15in (small) size frame, and I am about 5.8 now, so i will need to get a bigger bike. Also the stock tires are way to narrow. I ended up putting a 2.4 on the front and a 2.6 on the back, compared to the stock size of a 1.8.

Bottom Line:   
If you are serious about getting a bike a Cannondale RUSH 400 or any of their later models. You are making the right choice.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by andyfsr a Weekend Warrior

Date Reviewed: September 1, 2012

Strengths:    Quick background
I broke my back in several places and was a decent all round rider then, but i looked like i was never to ride again. Then I said eff it, found this bike and am powering through it, (slowly, very and embarrassingly, slow) but it is good to be able to ride and review after 5 yrs off.
Solid platform-Rush 6 has decent component mix for the money.Climbs better than any bike I have owned-Stable on long XC snigle track

Weaknesses:    Seems long-Not the best in switchbacks but that could be because I ride a large and am probably better suited to a medium. 5'9 short legs long torso.
Brake jack going down hill, might as well be a rigid on the rear when you hit the brakes. Brakes a tad weak too, but work. I just quit braking, no more issues.

Bottom Line:   
I bought mine used so it had different grips and some worn out tires but otherwise looked brand new. Very first ride was at a ski resort with new Forte' Tsali tires. Not the best place to test bike but it passed with flying colors and I look forward to going back, especially with bike more finely tuned to fit me.
Next rides were on Front range in the Rockies. This bike climbs. My brother in law is in 5 times better shape and I can climb short mean climbs that kill him and his pogoing bike. No Bob, no bounce just climb. Out in the open range going across country this bike just rocks. I like it.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Too many to list

Duration Product Used:   2 months or so now

Price Paid:    $500.00

Purchased At:   Used

Similar Products Used:   I have owned several bikes. Fisher Sugar. Specialized Enduro, Various hardtails, Riden more full suspension bikes than I can to list.

Bike Setup:   Basically all stock-Rock Shox Recon upfront, Sram x5 gear and shimano hydro brakes Forte Tsali tires

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Andy Aaron a Weekend Warrior

Date Reviewed: August 20, 2012

Strengths:    A Bit of background-EX amateur expert level motocrosser and decent bmx racer-Now an old has been that still enjoys riding. I have been on about a 5 year hiatus due to severe injury (broken back and ribs mostly) Sold my beloved Specialized Enduro believing I would never be able to ride again-Well a few surgerys and an extra 50lbs I decided pain or no pain to ride again. Found this for sale locally-thought simple would be better and I was right. Yes it has at best mid level to low level components, a Recon fork with just Air and rebound, but I never noticed, This thing climbs far better than I can, No Bob at all, X5 shifters never missed a shift, once air pressure was set front and back it was ideal. It goes where I want it to, climbs better than I can. My first ride out was a ski resort all downhill day-not the ideal environment but it took the abuse and when it was over it was as solid as when I got there. Next few rides have been at the front range of Colorado Mountains. This is where this bike truly shines. As a long distance XC marathon ride, this bike is ideal.

Weaknesses:    Now some bad- Brakes are weak, they slow you down but not with a lot of authority. Also rear end gets pretty rigid under braking, but it is a single high pivot so it is not a surprise. Also feels really long, good going down steep and wide but a bit more work on switchbacks, however it still goes where it is pointed just a tad wide at times. Might be able to tune that out soon.

Bottom Line:   
Overall, I am very pleased with the bike-Doesn't have the All Mountain capabilities of my Enduro but then again neither do I possess those abilities either. But as a relaxed pace (I am fat now so that is how fast I go) over cross country terrain, this bike is great. And I was not embarrassed at the Ski resort, never fell never got into anything sketchy because of the bike.
Glad I got and am thankful I can ride.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Just about anywhere Colorado

Duration Product Used:   1Month

Price Paid:    $500.00

Purchased At:   Local

Similar Products Used:   I have had all kids of bikes. Gary Fisher Sugar 2 a few different hard-tails, Specialized Enduro.

Bike Setup:   Basically stock.
Different grips, flat pedals, cant clip in anymore,
Rock Shox Recon 327 air and rebound, Manitou Radium R rear, works fantastic.
Stock wheels Forte Tsali tires 26x2.20

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by sandyeggo a Weekend Warrior

Date Reviewed: June 17, 2012

Strengths:    - Acceleration
- Climbing
- Turning
- Simple, proven single pivot suspension.

Weaknesses:    There isn't much. Sometimes I'm jealous of my friends who have more travel, but I don't really need a lot of travel on the trails I ride.

Bottom Line:   
I bought a Rush 4 back in 2007. I absolutely loved it. It accelerated like a cheetah, climbed like a goat, and turned on a dime.

Then I made a huge mistake: I sold her. In my defense, my knees were hurting and I thought road biking would be easier on them so I sold her to fund a road bike.

A year later, I realized that I generally don't like road biking so I spent thousands of dollars on various bikes and never found one that made me feel the way I did on my Rush.

So I went out and bought a used one off of eBay with plans of turning it into a 650b.

I won't be buying another full suspension bike any time soon.

This thing is fast, turns sharp, and is overall a blast to ride. Adding the 650b wheels made a great bike even better. It is almost like Cannondale designed it as a 650b. The increased BB height is helpful, and the additional rollover of the 650b is awesome.

I will say that 650b feels much closer to 26er than a 29er (and I'm fine with that).

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Matson Hill

Price Paid:    $1400.00

Purchased At:   eBay

Similar Products Used:   Cannondale Flash 29er, Cannondale Trail 29er SSer, Redline 'Cog 29er, Redline Cog 26er, Fezzari Solitude

Bike Setup:   650b (Stan's Crest with Pacenti Neo Motos 2.1), Race Face carbon cranks, Azonic Flat pedals, no-name ergo grips with bar ends.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Ealahan1 a Cross Country Rider from Charlotte, NC USA

Date Reviewed: September 6, 2011

Strengths:    Climbs and accelerates like crazy and leaves everyone I ride with in the dust on the hills. Point and shoot accuracy all around, I stopped hitting trees.

Weaknesses:    looks funny

Bottom Line:   
This is my second full suspension bike. It is incredible... i was very close to buying the Santa Cruz Superlight when I found this bike on EBAY close to where I live. I bought the bike and have to say that the thing is incredible. I've only had it for a couple of weeks, but the riding improvement is evident. My buddy whose owned several Full Suspension bikes is being left in the dust now... Awesome for the Short guy! I bought it for the Single pivot design and the fact that everyone said it climbs great... They were right! I think I got a good price... it's a 2006.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   USNWWC

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $1200.00

Purchased At:   EBAY

Similar Products Used:   Trek Fuel 90

Bike Setup:   Lefty front fork, Upgraded to XT hydraulic brakes, levers, and derailleurs by the previous owner.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Zootown a Cross Country Rider from Missoula, MT

Date Reviewed: August 20, 2011

Strengths:    Frame. Suspension (design and hardware)The Fox Float RP2 and F120 RL fork are easy to set up and have performed flawlessly.

Weaknesses:    Tires, pedals, brakes.

Bottom Line:   
What a great bike. I bought this as an entry level ride for endurance racing. I have put several hundred miles on it over the last couple of months, and it has not missed a beat. It inspires confidence while descending and LOVES to climb. There is virtually no pedal bob while climbing with the pro pedal engaged on the Fox RP2. It is very efficient. I have heard ugly things about the WTB Speedisc wheelset, but I have been very happy with them. At 210 lbs, I have put them through the ringer. They have yet to go out of true and are reasonably light for the price.
Drawbacks: The stock seat, a Fi'zik Nissense, left me numb in 5 it went along with the stock 32 tooth rear cassette. The trails in Montana are WAY to steep and long for a 11-32 tooth (at least for this old guy)The tires are also pure suck. Do your self a favor, switch them out and run tubeless. It will save you a ton of weight and energy. The most glaring problem is the Avid Juicy three discs. They are underpowered, inconsistent and NOISY. They are the next thing to go.
Given the price of this bike ( Under a grand on ebay)The value is still fantastic given the minor upgrades you might want to make.
Overall I am completely happy with the purchase. I rode the Butte 100 with this rig and it rocked. The best thing I can say about it is that I forgot it was there while I was riding. It just became part of the rider.4 Chilis of 5. I took one off just because of the upgrades that need to be made.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Wallman

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $1000.00

Purchased At:   Ebay

Similar Products Used:   K2 attack

Bike Setup:   Avid Juicy 3's; FSA XC bar;Shimano xt pedals (upgraded);Scram X9 der's and shifter pods. WTB saddle (upgrade); Shimano XT 34 tooth cassette (upgrade); WTB speed disc rims with Shimano M525 hubs; generic Shimano FC-M542 (Deore grade)

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by joshrt69 a Downhiller from mesa,az

Date Reviewed: May 22, 2011

Strengths:    just solid everything works together well

Weaknesses:    a little heavy

Bottom Line:   
just a sweet bike that can be made even sweeter!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   hawes

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $1000.00

Purchased At:   dominecs 2 wheelers

Bike Setup:   ive have since added 44 bomber ti micro fork and dt swiss rims now its ridicoulous!!

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by boobano29 a Weekend Warrior from Lakeland, FL, Polk

Date Reviewed: January 9, 2011

Strengths:    Great package. High end components with Sram xo, ESA, etc...Durable bike...they way a mountain bike should be. Handles climbs, drops, roots rocks and keeps ticking. Never a part failure (except for a tire). The Fox 100 XL shock is great and the Fow RP23 is always solid. The brushed aluminum frame is not only one of the best looking frames but stays looking paint chips to deal with.

Weaknesses:    The Mavic tubeless rims are a bear to get the tubeless tires off of. It would be nice to have a little more clearance for the bigger rock, ruts and logs.

Bottom Line:   
It's a great all mountain bike and all day xc. I prefer the Fox 100 XL with the lock out valve control on the 3z (really works) over the CF lefty on my Scalpel.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Alafia and Cater Road

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Purchased At:   eBay

Similar Products Used:   Cannondale Ultra badboy, Cannondale Scalpel, K2 Carbon Fiber Oz

Bike Setup:   Stock other than CF Monkey bars and post,

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by BlueWheels a Cross Country Rider from Baltimore, MD, USA

Date Reviewed: January 2, 2011

Strengths:    Solid Frame, Good Componentry, Great Price,

Weaknesses:    Squeaky Brakes, Stock Tires, Immediately Loose Grips

Bottom Line:   
I spent time borrowing bikes from friends and finally made the decision to get one of my own and went with the Cannondale Rush 6 after test riding several at various LBS. I bought the bike because it felt better than anything else I test rode at similar price points and I've been extremely happy with it this year. So far, I have logged just over 500 miles of trail riding and it handles everything (including a couple of big crashes) without a problem. I would understand looking for more suspension travel if you are hitting some big drops, but the movement I have on the Rush is good enough for my day-to-day XC riding on Maryland trails. So far, the only things that have needed to be changed are the grips, because the stocks ones wore out pretty immediately, and the stock tires, which weren't terrible, but I noticed a tremendous difference when I switched them out for some better tires. Overall, I highly recommend the Rush to anyone looking for a reliable MTB that makes it easy to zip around XC trails.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Patapsco

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $1250.00

Purchased At:   Princeton Sports

Similar Products Used:   Trek 6000, Specialized

Bike Setup:   Stock other than the grips and tires. Added a computer.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by rmx711 a Cross Country Rider from Bellingham, WA

Date Reviewed: November 17, 2010

Strengths:    nice frame, dialed geometry, Fox suspension, pedals well, descends great

Weaknesses:    hubs, X7 shifters, cable routing

Bottom Line:   
This bike is great for an all-round XC/trail bike. I race XC, and this bike performs well, although not like a dedicated race bike. However, on any course where there is rough and fast downhills, this bike will pull away from the others. The stock Shimano hubs are complete garbage though, they tore themselves to pieces within the first year. But besides the bearing issues, this bike handles it all. The brakes are enough for most things, and are barely powerful enough to just have a finger on each brake. The Fox suspension is awesome, and it's especially nice because it's not something you usually see on a sub-2K bike. The fork absorbs small and big bumps with ease. Also, the frame has not broken despite the abuse I have thrown at it.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $1700.00

Purchased At:   LBS

Similar Products Used:   06 stumpjumper, SC superlight

Bike Setup:   09 rush 6 with 60mm stem, X9

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Lu?s_Velez a Cross Country Rider from Portugal

Date Reviewed: October 14, 2010

Strengths:    The frame, Lefty and Fox make a great pair!

Weaknesses:    Low end peripherals for such a bike!

Bottom Line:   
A super frame with super damping system. It's the most comfortable bike I've ever ridden, it just pushes me further and further in the tracks, I simply can't get enough of this bike! I have it for two years and she'll stay with me for many more. I've always dream of having a Cannondale and now I won't let her go. The only least good thing I can say about the original bike setup is that it comes with some crappy low end peripherals: tyres, saddle and grips where immediatelly gone, the rest endured a couple miles more. Now she is just the way I want her to be, and she'll be with me forever! She's mine I say, all mine!!!

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $3000.00

Purchased At:   Bike Zone

Similar Products Used:   BH Expert, Scott Scale 35, Scott Spark, Cube AMS100, Specialized Stumpjumper

Bike Setup:   Nowadays - XT/X0/X9 drivetrain, Magura Louise BAT Carbon brakes, Lefty/Hope Pro II/Mavic XC717 wheelset

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by gunksdave a Cross Country Rider from Sea Cliff, NY

Date Reviewed: October 3, 2010

Strengths:    Smooth ride. I am very pleased with the geometry. Handles well on twisty stuff and downhills. Climbs better than my rocky hard-tail much to my surprise.

Weaknesses:    A terrible creaking in the bottom braket. LBS could not find it. Cannondale rep said it was internal. Reccommended very tiny drill holes to be filled with lubricant (I forget what kind). It rides silently now and hole are so small I don't even know they are there. Should last more than a year. When it starts to creak again I just go in for another injection.

Bottom Line:   
I will ride the hell out of this bike until I destroy it or it becomes so outdated I need to upgrade. It is a very comfortable all day trail ride :)

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   East Setauket

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $1000.00

Purchased At:   used

Bike Setup:   stock with fox shocks.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:2
Submitted by matthtchero5 a Racer from new jersey

Date Reviewed: September 16, 2010

Strengths:    The lefty is so awesome I love the way it turns at high speeds and I love the shimano deore LX fluid disc brakes and speed shifters and I. Changed out the tires to continental edge tires.very knoby and they grip in to mud like its not even there at all.

Weaknesses:    The seat sucks.

Bottom Line:   
Its a great bike for what I paid for it.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   round valley

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $1800.00

Purchased At:   garden state highway

Similar Products Used:   My 2010 cannondale rush 4 is my First full suspention bike. But closest was raliegh gary fisher wahoo disc very nice hard tail for 800.

Bike Setup:   Not stock

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Scott a Cross Country Rider from Havelock, NC

Date Reviewed: September 13, 2010

Strengths:    Smooth and quick, climbs like nothing eltse. The lefty is solid and takes anything you throw at it. Never have to use the pro pedal, theres no pedal bob. It soaks up all the roots and bumps on the NC trails amazingly.

Weaknesses:    The stock tires are junk, thats it.

Bottom Line:   
This thing climbs like you wouldnt believe and will fly down hill with great control. The lefty gets lots of attention and holds up to the hype. Im loving the Scram set up, iv always been a rapid fire guy im the past. This bike performs outstanding in quick switch backs and technical sections. The RP23 soaks up all the NC roots like their not even there, i can stay in the saddle longer and just roll over them if need be. Amazing bike peroid.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Pirhana Pit

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $800.00

Purchased At:   Craigslist

Similar Products Used:   My first full suspension bike.

Reviews 1 - 15 (206 Reviews Total) | Next 15

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating

Anyone try a Mission 2.3 on a converted Rush?

I'm looking for a faster rolling tire than a Nevegal for my 650b'd Cannondale Rush. I'm willing to give up a little grip for some more speed. I was looking at the new Kenda Honey Badger 2.2, but from what I've been told, it won't be available for another 2 months. I know the Vee rubber Mission 2.1 ... Read More »

Buying a used bike: yeti575 vs. Cannondale Rush 3

I'm looking for a used bike in the 2K budget frame. Checking the local craigslist I'm down to a couple of options: Cannondale Rush 3 Carbon Yeti 575 or the Rumblefish: ... Read More »

3 Day Adrenalin Rush

Thanks go out to my UCSC guides and shuttlers for two days of incredible riding. Gotta love flowy and techy freeride singletrack on damp, tacky dirt in old growth coastal forests. Santa Cruz area trails are truly a taste of BC only a 6 hour drive north of LA. Search UCSC Twin Gates and Demo Forest f ... Read More »

Opinion: used Rush Carbon Team or New RZ120/3?

I know the spec on the Carbon Team is way better, but I've read about the cable rub issue on the Rush. Is it something I can deal with, or will it cause the frame to eventually fail? How is the ride of the new RZ compared to the Rush? The swingarm looks very different, but from what I understan ... Read More »

Thoughts on XL Cannondale Rush 4 or Santa Cruz Superlight for a 6'3 246 lb rider

Hey all, I am returning to ride again after an almost 18 year layoff... I used to ride all the time when I was younger and at the time rode various models of Schwinn and Specialized hardtails. Now I just purchased a used GT hardtail that has some decent components on it and I am having a b ... Read More »

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