What do you get if you want to go off-roading on four
wheels? You get an SUV. What do you do when you want to do the same on two
wheels? You get an adventure motorcycle. But what if you want to go on the
beaten path on a cycle? You get a hardtail cycle much like the Fathom 3 from
Giant Fathom 3 gets a clean looking aluminium frame
consisting of thick tubes. The yellow colour of the cycle contrasted really
well with the blue painted names and accents. The cycle looks neat, thanks to
Giant thoughtfully routing the cables from within the frame. The brake cables
enter the frame at the lower end of the head tube and emerge out under end of
the lower tube.
While this is neat, the flip side is that changing cables
would be a bit of work. My favourite feature would perhaps be how easy it is to
adjust the seat height. You do not need any kind of tools; all you need to do
is press a trigger on the left of the handlebar. This releases the seat and
increases its height. You can press the same trigger and push the seat to
reduce its height. This is a very easy and intuitive way of changing the seat
The only problem with this system is that you get an
exposed metal wire on the handlebar which doesn’t look all that great and can
also poke your left hand. To avoid this you can simply tuck in the wire with
the others or tape it. The pedals have grooves on the edges which allow you to
plant your feet firmly on the cycle. I found that to be really helpful as at no
point during my relentless testing did my feet slip off the pedal.
The large 27.5 inch wheels have off-road worthy treads. I can testify that because I did take it through gravel, mud and plenty of slush. The cycle is rock steady through them all and provides enough grip and confidence that you can pull through some tricky situations. That does not mean that the cycle does not fit in the city landscape. Once you have smooth tarmac flowing underneath, the cycle is happy to cruise without much effort thanks to the 2X9 Shimano gears. Slot it into a lower gear and you can enjoy the breeze caress your face as you pedal effortlessly. But city roads can also be full of bumps. This is where the front telescopic suspension comes into play. With 120mmm travel, it soaks in a good amount of shocks and can also be locked once you want to encounter some harsh and tricky terrain. The hydraulic disc brakes pack in nice amount of progression and bite allowing you to come to a halt almost immediately.
The Taiwanese cycle manufacturer, Giant has made a cycle that is actually pretty perfect for Indian roads which can be full of all kinds of terrains and obstacles. The fat tyres can go over them all and the gearing makes it easy to adapt to different situations. The suspension works great but the wide handlebar will take some time to get used to. The cycle is available in India from Element Retail at a price of Rs 93,999. I can pretty much say that the Fathom 3 is like the SUV of cycles and can allow you to have fun on almost any kind of terrain!
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