Giant NRS 1 XC Full Suspension

4.63/5 (49 Reviews)
MSRP : $2000.00


Product Description



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Reviews 1 - 15 (49 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Crash a Weekend Warrior from Calgary, AB, CAN

Date Reviewed: January 10, 2012

Strengths:    Lightweight, efficient, quality build

Weaknesses:    NRS suspension system - great in theory and great for some, but really doesnt suit my riding style

Bottom Line:   
Bought mine used off a buddy and thought it would be the perfect ride for me. After building up and riding it for a couple of months, I simply couldn't appreciate the rear suspension system. Basically, pedal input causes the back end to stiffen considerably - no bob heading up hills, and super efficient: keep your butt in the saddle and spin like a hardtail. If you're off the gas, the suspension is supple and performs normally - sounds great right?

In practice, I found that the pedal input did far more than just stiffen the rear end - I found it actually driving the rear end down, even bucking me off on some slow speed technical sections when I was a bit nose heavy through the rocks and put some power down to help bring the nose up. Not all the time, but enough to hamper the confidence. I tried a whole whack of different settings and shocks, and though I reduced the pedal action, I could never shake that boosted feeling with pedal input. I tried smoother pedal input, different cockpit positions to move the weight forward and back, nothing worked.

Given enough time in the saddle I probably could have gotten used to it. I know guys that swear by them and the way the suspension firms up under load. Me? I sold it at the end of last season and I'm looking for a new ride.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $800.00

Purchased At:   used

Similar Products Used:   RM Slayer, AC1, Brodie Loki, RM Switch SL, Bullit, RM ETSX, Bear Deelux, GF Cake, GF Sugar 4+

Bike Setup:   XT drivetrain, tora up front, xt brakes, 317 wheelset. XT cranks, RF next carbon bars, etc etc.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by bhumbel a Weekend Warrior from Frederick, MD USA

Date Reviewed: July 25, 2011

Strengths:    Lite-weight, great components and I love the tubeless rims/tires. Two flats in 10 years, not bad.

Weaknesses:    None really, although the bike is a bit noisy (clangy) when going over rocks and roots.

Bottom Line:   
Excellent bike. I've been beating the crap out of this bike for 10 years now, probably have at least 6,500 hard miles on it, and the Frederick Watershed where I ride is like one big "rock garden". The only things I've had to do is replace the chain, brake pads and a chain ring or two. I've also had the fork seals rebuilt once. I'm looking to buy a 29er soon and I'll definately look at a Giant.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Frederick Watershed Trails

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $1500.00

Purchased At:   Bike store

Bike Setup:   I put a riser handlebar on the bike to keep me from going over the handlebars and removed the large chainring for ground clearance.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by aufevermike a Weekend Warrior from Soldotna, Alaska, USA

Date Reviewed: May 15, 2010

Strengths:    Love how this thing rides, handles, climbs, and corners. At just around 25# I am going to shed some pounds off from riding this thing.

Weaknesses:    None so far. I was a bit worried from the other reviews about the front shocks being so crappy but I don't have anything to campare to them. They work great for me though.

Bottom Line:   
Being a ex-BMXer in my early years man have things come a long way. Now I know this is a 2004 bike and since then things have come a bit further but thins bike is AWESOME in my book. I high recommend gettting one if you can still find one, I got real lucky and a great deal for a new 2004 ($750 shipped to Alaska).

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Tsalteshi trails

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $750.00

Purchased At:   ebay

Similar Products Used:   None, this is my first FS. My otyher is a Trek 920. a far cry from my new one.

Bike Setup:   stock except Easton Money lite bars.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by tridium107 a Weekend Warrior from oregon

Date Reviewed: August 6, 2009

Strengths:    Light, durable, good looking, price

Weaknesses:    None

Bottom Line:   
Excellent cross country bike - enough suspension but only marginally more weight than an equivalently spec'd hardtail, at 12kg. You can get lighter but not for significantly more money. Simple single pivot rear suspension works efficiently.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $1500.00

Purchased At:   private

Similar Products Used:   Specialized Epic, KHS softail

Bike Setup:   Stock 2005 NRS1 Carbon

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by EMDEEZEE a Cross Country Rider from Tucson, AZ, USA

Date Reviewed: February 21, 2009

Strengths:    Efficient as a hardtail and tracks better than one on climbs all while providing comfort for extended time in the saddle.

Weaknesses:    The graphics aren't the sickest, but that's a small price to pay for the amazing performance.

Bottom Line:   
If serious about XC riding this bike should be strongly considered. It is stiff enough to be used as a commuter bike and still shred trails for the weekend warriors. I've ridden mine for almost five years and have no complaints.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Bug Springs/Molino Basin Combo

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $2100.00

Purchased At:   Performance

Similar Products Used:   Cannondale Rush, Trek ES 9

Bike Setup:   Setup is still stock except for pedals, tires, and grips. I don't ride with enough precission to corner with the original Hutchenson Pythons so went with a more beefy tread pattern.

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

Date Reviewed: October 14, 2008

Strengths:    Great Frame (04), fast bike. This is the closest full suspension bike that has the benefits of a hardtail that I have ridden. The bike can take abuse.

Weaknesses:    After building custom frames I am disappointed with the alignment and tolerances in the frame (but what can you expect). Head tube was reamed crooked so it eats up headsets (one every year). Giant acknowledged the problem but wanted me to buy a new frame.

Bottom Line:   
This is my second NRS 1 The first one was a great bike, I sold it to my brother and got a new one. I have slowly upgraded every part on my bike except the frame. I love this frame and as long as it is still in one piece, or until someone gives me an Ellsworth Truth, I will be riding this bike. I have raced many different races on this bike winning many of them, including 12hr Kranky Monkey for my class. This is a fast, twitchy bike, not for big air. It really rides like a hardtail taking the edge of the bumps. I will say the one component that I couldn't wait to get rid of were the brakes, Hayes HFX 9 suck, they rub continually and are not as powerful. The old Hayes Mag's that came on the 01 NRS were way better. To bad they don't make this bike anymore. If you are looking at getting one I don't think you will be disappointed. I will still give the max amount of chillies even with my few problems because I have not found a bike (I should say frame) that I like as much for the price.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $1600.00

Purchased At:   Performance Bike

Similar Products Used:   Giant NRS 1 2001, Trek Fuel, Specialized FSR XC Pro, Ellsworth Truth, Giant Trance, and many others.

Bike Setup:   Frame Size: Large
Handlebar: Titec Ti bars
Grips: Cane Creek Lock-on
Bar ends: Cane Creek
Stem: Thomson 120mm, 5 degree rise
Headset: Cane Creek (once this one fails I am going to ream the headtube for Chris King)
Fork: Manitou Skarab Platinum (customized)
Brakes: Hope M4 mono 183mm fr, 160 rr (I know they are overkill but they rock)
Shifters: Shimano XTR '08 shifters
Front Derailleur: Shimano XTR '08
Rear Derailleur: Shimano XTR '08
Crankset: RaceFace Deus XC '06 46T/34T/26T
Pedals: Time Atac Carbon TI
Wheelset: Handbuilt Shimano XT Hub, DT Swiss XR4.2 Rim, DT Swiss Supercomp Spokes
Skewers: Salsa
Rear shock: Fox Float (Customized)
Seatpost: Thomson Elite
Seatpost clamp: Salsa (soon to be Crank Brothers)
Saddle: Fi'zi:k Aliante Ti
Computer: Garmin 305 GPS
Tyres: IRC Mythos XC Kevlar

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

Date Reviewed: November 25, 2007

Strengths:    Stiffness in the rear triangle, parts spec (the WTB seat is SO comfortable!), flickiness of the bicycle (with an 80mm fork)

Weaknesses:    not made anymore, parts spec (hutchinson python tires and Manitou Skareb fork)

Bottom Line:   
I got this bike as a gift back in '04. I swapped out the main triangle for a larger main triangle as I am 6'2" vs the original bike's 16.5" frame...omg the bike fits like a glove now. make sure the rear shock is set correctly for you otherwise the ride will be too plush or stiff.

I enjoyed the parts spec for about the first 10 rides, but the flexy-as-heck Manitou Skareb Super (80mm SPV) was swapped for a much stiffer Noleen Mega Air (100 mm) by spring '05. The XT RD was swapped for an XTR, and replaced the 11-32 XT cassette with an Ultegra 12-27. The hayes HFX9 brakes were a bit finicky but eventually settled in and have been trouble-free

My only real gripes are: the front tire choice (hutchinson python), the crank (Raceface forged XC) and fork (Manitou Skareb). These 3 items are 'XC-racing' oriented, but that means you also need to be riding in dry, hardpack conditions, weight 160lbs, and not have big, torquey legs. I am none of those, and 75% of the riders I've met aren't that either. Anyway, the fork flexed a lot, the 44T chainring flexed against the derailleur cage if I used that ring while riding (due to a flexy crankarms), and the front tire CONSTANTLY washed out on anything marginally wet or pebbley, which greatly reduced my riding confidence.

SO, I swapped out the problematic parts and have been happy ever since...one of the most affordable, raceable XC full-suspension bicycles ever made. Few come close, seriously!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Patapsco trail system

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $1800.00

Purchased At:   Broadway Bicycles in Baltimore City

Similar Products Used:   Klein Mantra Race, Specialized Stumpjumper FSR

Bike Setup:   OEM XT hubs/Mavic X223 rims, ultegra 12-27 cassette, XTR RD, XT FD, Noleen Mega Air fork set to 100mm, Thomson stem, Easton EA70 flat bar and EA70 seatpost, WTB Rocket V saddle, Hayes HFX-9 brakes, FOX AVA-R shock, Raceface forged XC crankset, hutchinson tire in back, specialized tire in front

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by simon a Cross Country Rider from huddersfield west yorkshire UK

Date Reviewed: December 16, 2006

Strengths:    no bob resonable weight

Weaknesses:    havent found any as yet

Bottom Line:   
a great bike if you want a bike that rides like an hard tail but porforms like a full susser.abslute stella Acceleration. i have 80mm travel fork on mine at some point i would like to try 100mm on to see what it rides like

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   ye old track

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $1000.00

Purchased At:   ebay plus other sources

Similar Products Used:   02 mount visin pro 03 rift zone 03 GT i drive loads of H tails

Bike Setup:   04 nrs 1 EA70 bars stem seat post sram x.9 gears mavic 717xc on hope hubs with mono mini disc brakes maniout skareb spv,s truativ cranck arms with TA chinook rings

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Steve a Cross Country Rider from australia, victoria

Date Reviewed: November 5, 2006

Strengths:    This bike is fitted with a range of great products,and is well backed by Giant.

Weaknesses:    Mostly wear and tear.

Bottom Line:   
This bike is awsome i ride it most days for at least an hour or more training, i live in the country with forest at my back door.Last year i broke the frame on this bike where the top tube meets the seat tube above the shock,this was on my 2003 frame (black) went to my dealer who sent it to Giant Australia who replaced it with a 2004 frame(blue)rebuilt the bike put a new LX front derailer on at no cost, the whole lot back in a week and a bit, and stood by their lifetime frame guarantee.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   murrays 2 in bendigo

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $3000.00

Purchased At:   bendigo bicycle centre

Similar Products Used:   Giant hard tails

Bike Setup:   Fairly stock,changed middle ring to truvative steel instead of raceface alloy,for a little extra weight i get twice the life and half the expense,also use LX rear cluster instead of expensive xt a few grams difference.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:3
Submitted by James Parman a Racer from Oshkosh

Date Reviewed: October 4, 2006

Strengths:    Frame, Sid Fork, XT/3.1 Wheels, Hayes Disc Brakes

Weaknesses:    Race Face Prodigy crank, LX Shifters, LX front Derailleur, LX Cassette, Titec stem, seatpost, and handlebars, WTB Saddle, Hutchinson Python tires,

Bottom Line:   
I have raced this rig for a year now and I love how it handles. It took a while for me to find out optimal adjustment of the air pressures in the shocks, at 160, I use 130+/115- in the front, and 170+/50- in the rear. I run a hutchinson python as a rear tire and a bontrager superX as the front tire... 32.lbs each. Seems to work out well all around for me.
The Titec stuff is weighty, and the saddle was uncomfortable. The RaceFace cranks are weighty and the have proved to be problematic when it comes to chain suck and shifting. The LX shifters are not nearly as quick or precise as XT however they do get the job done. The Python tires are just plain heavy.
This bike is sooo middle of the road. Their really is not a single thing that is bad-aweful, however their is not one upgrade that you could do to it to make it much better. You want better, look at replacing the wheels, drivetrain and cockpit as a whole. I guess I would have rather sacrificed a couple of things for more jewel like components than have to want to upgrade every little thing. But then again, it gets the job done.
The brakes... first time with discs.... never looking back.

It is not about the bike.
It is however, all about the engine.

Stop reading this, find something that fits, that you like and that is within your means, and go riding....

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $1700.00

Purchased At:   Fond du Lac Cyclery

Similar Products Used:   Hardtails

Bike Setup:   Stock except for SDG Bel-Air Saddle, XT Cranks and XT Cassette.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Cooch Boman a Racer from Brisbane, Australia

Date Reviewed: August 23, 2006

Strengths:    Awesome package and bang for the buck. Carbon frame is super strong with great attention to detail and finish. Component selection matches the bike's dynamics perfectly, except for front shock/forks which I upgraded at time of purchase to Marzocchi AM1's with 150mm travel. The 16.5" frame gobbles up a 2.5" downhill tyre!!

Weaknesses:    If you're not careful, the lovely gloss finish over the carbon wears off very quickly from cable rub, pants-rub, sitting on top tube and washing with too heavy a brush. I covered with 3M clear straight away. Finish inside of rear arms quickly becomes pitted from stone chips. Water bottle mounts under down tube are just plain useless - why bother?

Bottom Line:   
I've created a bit of a Frankenstein with the forks and tyres, but have to say this is an awesome cross-country / all mountain ride. The ETA on the forks allows you to drop the geometry back to stock for super steep climbs, while the 150mm travel and 2.5" minions allow you to bomb everything. I've raced this bike with this spec and just blew the lycra-cross-country boys away on the descents and kept up with them on the climbs.

The bike comes stock with a pretty good spec except for forks (as mentioned) and the Hayes 9 brakes (try bleeding these babies! Argh). Overall a super-sweet package, that for me has become a bike you can take on epic all dayers, bomb the downhills and even play in a bmx park. A do it all bike.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Roger's, Gap Creek

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $2800.00

Purchased At:   Bike & Cycle Obsession

Similar Products Used:   Specialised FSR's, Kona Kikapu's & Dawg's.

Bike Setup:   2005 model with Marzocchi AM1's (150mm travel with ETA) and Maxxis Minion 2.5" downhill tyres. 16.5" frame for a 70kg rider, 178cms.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Gary a Cross Country Rider from West Texas

Date Reviewed: July 10, 2006

Strengths:    Light. Very good suspension. Handles well.

Weaknesses:    Hayes brakes. See brake review.

Bottom Line:   
Both ends of the suspension work well even for a 210 lb. rider. Once dialed in, the bike handles very well and the ride is supple without being mushy. The Skareb fork works well on just about any surface. Very little, if any, bob if set up correctly. Good climber. The only dark cloud is the Hayes brakes, both of which failed after one year. The Anthem must be one fine ride if it is replacing this machine.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   XC

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $1300.00

Purchased At:   eBay

Similar Products Used:   Hardtails.

Bike Setup:   2004 NRS1. Stan's notubes. Egg beaters.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Tio Sancho a Cross Country Rider from Boston

Date Reviewed: September 8, 2005

Strengths:    No too bobby

Weaknesses:    Wasn't mine

Bottom Line:   
I rented one of these from Slickrock Cycles out in Moab and LOVED it! I've never been a huge fan of Giants, but can't say enough good things about this bike. Let's just say I was pleasantly surprised. It was very comfortable to ride on the Slickrock Trail. The only thing I would have changed was the front shock (Duke), but other than that it was very nice.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Tested or demo'ed only


Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Ronald van Rijn a Cross Country Rider from Krimpen a.d. IJssel

Date Reviewed: August 30, 2005

Strengths:    Geen gebober, rijd super strak voor een fully. (No bobing, firm ride for a fully.)
Wil je comfort, contrlle en XC rijeigenschappen dan is dit de fiets. (Do you want comfort, control and XC driving, than this is the bike you need) Pay less, get more.


Weaknesses:    MPH remmen kunnen warm worden bij lange afdalingen. Olie vervangen helpt. (MPH breaks turn hot in long down hills. Change oil will help.)

Bottom Line:   
Just ride it, it fantastico.

Pay less get more.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Zeddam Netherlands

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $2295.00

Purchased At:   Boode BikeTotaal Zevenhuizen

Similar Products Used:   Proflex 757 and a Proflex/K2 Animal

Bike Setup:   Original setup. Road tyres, Vredestein S-lick 1,3¨, Off road tyres Python 2,1¨

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Adam a Cross Country Rider from North Carolina, USA

Date Reviewed: August 18, 2005

Strengths:    Everything.

Weaknesses:    Nothing really, have only broken my derailluar hanger, which was my fault....this bike really is not made for freeriding! Its a cross country racer.

Bottom Line:   
This is my first really good bike, the last one I owned was a Giant Rincon. I have the '02 version so I've got the Rock Shox Sid SL fork, this fork is awesome. This is the first air fork I've ridden, I like it a lot more than the coil forks I've tried. When I first picked up my NRS I could not beleive how light it was, I knew it weighed around 26lbs but it still suprised me. I had an even bigger suprise when I started to ride it, the Rock Shox Sid XC rear shock absorbs both the large and small bumps really well, maybe I was just too much used to a hardtail but the suspension is still really great! Add to that the fact that there is ABSOLUTELY NO BOB! Infact, the rear suspension design causes the shock to be extended.
This bike is a great buy for the money, if you are moving up from a hardtail or looking for a serious XC bike, check out this one!

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $1011.00

Purchased At:   eBay

Bike Setup:   Stock except for an MX-5 carbon fiber bar, doesn't really need any modifications, in my opnion.

Reviews 1 - 15 (49 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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


BB size 2004 NRS 1

What's the bb size of a 2004 NRS 1, 68x113? Swapping cranksets between the Talon and NRS but the Talon bb is 73 and that's why I ask.Read More »

NRS 1,2,3,Air differences?

I have a 2004 NRS2. I have seen other references to NRS, NRS3, NRS Air. I don't think it is dependent on the year made, so what makes one bike a NRS3 as opposed to a NRS2? Is it the level of original components, or something different in frame design?Read More »

Opinions on Giant NRS 1 as first fs

Hey guys, Been a lurker for a long time. I own a '11 Scott scale 70 and I have an itch to build a fs bike to change it up. I have never owned a full sus and I have seen what looks to me like an 03 Giant NRS 1 for sale. I was wondering if you guys had opinions on the frame or info, like if there are ... Read More »

2004 NRS 1 - Replacement Suspension Rocker Arms

I need to replace the suspension rocker arms for a 2004 Giant NRS 1. I tried going through local bikes shops and formal channels and no one was able to locate the replacement parts. I was able to find lots of posts about replacement bushings and bearings but nothing about the rocker arms. The ... Read More »

Rocker upgrade for 2001 nrs xtc 1??

Anyone have any of those rockers to add an inch of travel to the old nrs frames?? Mine is a 2001 XTC NRS 1 If so, please PM me... or if you know where to buy them. I think it was SGF Components.Read More »

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