Is Motobecane Fantom Cross Splendid? – [Motobecane Fantom Cross Review]

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Motobecane Fantom Cross Review

  • Price: $1895
  • Frame: Aluminum
  • Tires: 700c Aluminum
  • Gear: 2 × 9

What we like about it: The carbon fiber fork provides good support and also reduces weight.

What we don’t like about it: The brakes are rather average.

Rating: (4.7/5)

Motobecane Fantom Cross
Motobecane Fantom Cross

Once I was introduced to road-cross racing, I grew to love this form of racing.

I became interested when I heard some riders always talking about Motobecane Fantom Cross.

Does it perform well? Would it help me win more races?

With these questions in mind I ordered a Motobecane Fantom Cross and decided to give it a try.

Below, we will analyze the riding experience, key features, components, and specifications as well as other versions of this bike.

Additionally, at the end of the review, we will also compare several best bike models. If you want to know more about bike reviews, don’t hesitate to follow us.

Riding Experience

Compared to road bike races that compete for speed or endurance, road cyclocross races haven’t got a lot of attention.

But that doesn’t dampen the enthusiasm of us enthusiasts.

There would be a race in Oklahoma next week, and I decided to take Motobecane Fantom Cross with me. After booking a hotel on Skyscanner, I was ready to go.

Muddy road

Thanks to the Kenda Kwick Cross 700 x 32c tires, I didn’t get bogged down in the mud.

The Shimano CN-HG73, 9-speed drivetrain also gave me a big boost when I was struggling to swing my legs, so I could adjust my gears in time to save energy and keep the wheels running.

However, the Motobecane Fantom Cross would still skid in some places, perhaps increasing the tire size can further improve the stability of the vehicle.


The chase down the gravel-laden downhill sections was a great test of concentration.

The one-piece head tube design and Ultralite alloy handlebars made the Motobecane Fantom Cross very responsive, responding to the slightest wobble of my hands to nimbly avoid large rocks or adjust direction.

Honestly the bumps along the way made my arms feel some fatigue, but road trail bikes didn’t usually come with traditional shock absorption systems.

The good thing was that the Motobecane CARBON FIBER fork was relatively wide and thick, providing some comfort.

Also, the curved handlebar design allowed me to change my riding position in time to reduce physical discomfort.

Artificial barrier section

As I was speeding across the sand, I suddenly saw a line of grates around the corner ahead.

I squeezed the handbrake and the Tektro Oryx Cantilever black finish brake brought me to a stop in time.

Then I braced my left foot on the ground and got off, and fortunately the standing height of the Motobecane Fantom Cross was moderate for me and didn’t affect my speed.

After that, I used my right shoulder to hold the top tube of the Fantom Cross and crossed the board at full speed.

This was one of the reasons why the Motobecane Fantom Cross’s cabling ran through the top side of the top tube: it didn’t hurt the rider’s shoulder.

There were also some obstacle courses that required me to get in and out of the car frequently, which was a real drain on my strength.

On top of that, in order to win the race, I had to accelerate and start frequently.

Fortunately, the Motobecane CARBON FIBER had 12-26T gears, and the smaller gear ratios kept me from collapsing in the middle of the road.

In the end I came third. Although I didn’t win, it was the best result I’ve had since I started road cycling, and I have to say that the Motobecane CARBON FIBER is a great cross-country road bike.



Motobecane Fantom Cross is available in seven sizes, so you can choose more carefully according to your body shape and thus make it fit you better.

The aluminum frame makes the body strong enough to adapt well to off-road races with complex terrain and is beginner-friendly.

In addition, the Motobecane CARBON FIBER not only reduces weight, making it easier for you to face the stages where you need to carry the bike up, but also provides good support while riding.

At the same time, it can also reduce the pressure brought by the bumpy road to the arms.

Finally, the Kenda Kwick Cross, with 700 x 32c tires, provides good passability in the face of complex terrain such as mud and sand.

What do we like about it?

  • A wide selection of frame sizes is available.
  • The 2×9 drivetrain can cope with all kinds of complex terrain.
  • The carbon fiber fork provides good support and also reduces weight.
  • Kenda Kwick Cross, 700 x 32c tires pass well.
  • Motobecane Fantom Cross has good speed performance.

What don’t we like about it?

  • Rim brakes may not please everyone.


  • What kind of tires are used on the Motobecane Fantom Cross and what are the tire sizes?

It uses Kenda Kwick Cross 700 x 32c tires, which have good off-road performance and provide good grip.

  • What about the Motobecane Fantom Cross kit?

The Shimano Tiagra 105 kit is adequate for entry-level trail riders and provides good feedback.

  • How do I choose the size of this car?

The Motobecane Fantom Cross is rider-friendly for all heights, with 7 sizes to choose from. Here we provide you with a size chart, but of course you do not necessarily have to follow this standard. The best way to find the most suitable size is to test ride.

Rider heightSIZE
165cm – 173cm49cm
171cm – 179cm52cm
177cm – 185cm54cm
183cm – 190cm56cm
190cm- 194cm58cm
194cm- 197cm61cm
195cm +64cm




FrameAluminum alloy with Bi-Axle down tube, Integrated HeadTube, Double water bottle mounts Gallery of pics (Note: Motobecane USA is using 7005 and 6000 Both are engineered to be virtually identical in weight and performance)
ForkMotobecane CARBON FIBER Cross fork (AL or CrMo STEERER 1.125 inch – As available)
Rear Shockn/a
Bottom BracketTruVativ Elita Cross GXP External Bearing Bottom Bracket, CNC’D 38/48T or 39/48T (As Available) Chainrings, Polished Silver (Note: Some are equipped with comparable FSA 46/36T cranksets (Black) – As Available), (170mm 49-52cm / 172.5mm 54-56cm / 175mm 58-61cm)
HeadsetCane Creek, 1.125″ Threadless w/ Sealed Bearing
HandlebarUltralite Alloy Road, VariButted Alloy / Ritchey Logic Road Comp Threadless +/- 6 degree


RimsVeulta XRP Pro with precision bearing and radial/cross lacing
TiresKenda Kwick Cross, 700 x 32c or 30c (As Available) + presta tubes / Presta Valve tubes


Rear DerailleurShimano Tiagra 4500 (18 Spd total) front and Shimano 105 rear
CrankTruVativ Elita Cross GXP External Bearing Bottom Bracket, CNC’D 38/48T or 39/48T (As Available) Chainrings, Polished Silver (Note: Some are equipped with comparable FSA 46/36T cranksets (Black) – As Available), (170mm 49-52cm / 172.5mm 54-56cm / 175mm 58-61cm)
ShiftersShimano Tiagra 4500
CassetteSRAM PG950, 9-speed, 12-26T
ChainShimano CN-HG73, 9-speed
BrakesTektro Oryx Cantilever black finish
Brake LeversShimano Tiagra 4500 Brake/Shift STI 9 speed (18 gears total) AND Tektro RL570 Cross Top Levers on handlebar top section


Comparison Table

BicyclesClick viewTiresDrivelineFrame materialKits
Kona Super JakeClick ViewVittoria Terreno Mix TNT 700x33c1 × 11CarbonSRAM Force
Cannondale CAADX 105 SEClick ViewWTB Riddler, 700 x 37c2 × 11AluminumShimano 105, FSA
Canyon Inflite 5Click ViewSchwalbe X-One Allround 700x33c1 × 11AluminumSRAM Apex
Trek Boone 7 DiscClick ViewBontrager CX3 Team Issue, 120 tpi, aramid bead, 700x32c1 × 11CarbonSRAM Force

Motobecane Fantom Cross vs Kona Super Jake

Kona Super Jake
Kona Super Jake

The internal cables makes the Kona Super Jake easy to care for off-road and very friendly to tired riders after a long day over hills.

I am also pleasantly surprised by the Super Jake’s use of a carbon fiber frame, which greatly reduces drag on uphill climbs.

However, for beginner riders, drops are inevitable in the initial stages, so the aluminum frame of the Motobecane Fantom Cross is a bit more rugged and durable.

In addition, the Kona Super Jake’s Vittoria Terreno Mix TNT 700x33c tires have good grip performance.

If you want to improve the stability of the bike, its 40mm tire clearance allows you to mount wider tires.

The Kona Super Jake is also compatible with the Di2 package, so you can upgrade its 1×11 drivetrain to Shimano electronic gearing if you want.

The Kona Super Jake is indeed an excellent trail bike, but its high price can’t be ignored as well.

So if you’re on a budget, the Motobecane Fantom Cross is perfectly suited to your needs as a cost-effective mountain bike.

Learn More: Is Kona Jake the Snake Worth Buying? – [Kona Jake the Snake Review]

Motobecane Fantom Cross vs Cannondale CAADX 105 SE

Cannondale CAADX 105 SE
Cannondale CAADX 105 SE

First, both the Motobecane Fantom Cross and Cannondale CAADX 105 SE place the cable on the outside of the frame, although the former runs over the top tube.

The latter, on the other hand, is exposed on the lower side of the downtube, closer to the ground and therefore more prone to dirt accumulation.

Secondly, in terms of geometry, the Cannondale CAADX 105 SE has a shorter rear fork length for the same size.

As a result, its rear wheel is closer to the bottom of the rider, which makes the bike more agile.

But for people like me who are looking for more stability, the Motobecane Fantom Cross with a longer rear fork is more suitable.

In the end, I think both bikes are good starter trail bikes, both have strong and durable aluminum frames, and feature Shimano 105 kits, so you can choose based on your riding style.

Learn More: Is Cannondale CAADX 1 A Good Bike? [Cannondale CAADX 1 Review]

Motobecane Fantom Cross VS Canyon Inflite 5

Canyon Inflite 5
Canyon Inflite 5

The first thing that attracted me to the Canyon Inflite 5 is its signature top tube, which Canyon claims is slightly bent at the rear end of the top tube to provide better stability and comfort, giving the bike better support.

In short, when you’re riding off-road, you do feel that the Canyon Inflite 5 is a reliable partner.

In addition, Inflite 5 offers a total of 8 sizes from XXXS to XXL, friendly to riders of all sizes. The tires can be selected from 700C or 650b depending on the terrain or personal needs.

It is also worth mentioning that the Canyon Inflite 5’s 6061 aluminum frame is strong and durable.

Apart from that, the Canyon FK0045 CF Disc carbon fiber fork not only reduces weight but also provides good support.

However, for those who have a higher pursuit of speed, the Motobecane Fantom Cross is more suitable.

Motobecane Fantom Cross VS Trek Boone 7 Disc

Trek Boone 7 Disc
Trek Boone 7 Disc

Thanks to the 600 Series OCLV Carbon frame, the Boone 7 Disc is one of Trek’s lightest and fastest trail bikes.

I am also pleasantly surprised by the IsoSpeed suspension on the front and rear, which kept me smooth even on bumpy roads.

When you have experienced the Motobecane Fantom Cross and Trek Boone 7 Disc respectively, you should be able to feel the better braking performance of the latter.

Compared to the traditional Rim brakes, the SRAM Force flat mount hydraulic disc brakes are more sensitive and effortless, giving you peace of mind on winding trails and high-speed downhill sections.

However, the Trek Boone 7 Disc’s Bontrager Paradigm Comp quasi-vacuum tires wheels always have some rattling during the ride, which may annoy some people.

All in all, I think Trek Boone 7 Disc and Motobecane Fantom Cross are two different styles of products.

The former is suitable for experienced challengers, while the latter is more suitable for beginners who have less budget and off-road experience.


These are our tests of the Motobecane Fantom Cross. It has excellent off-road performance and provides a relatively comfortable ride.

In our opinion, the Motobecane Fantom Cross is a bike worth buying. That’s why we gave it a high score of 4.7.

Of course, if you’re interested in exploring other similar bikes, we have reviewed a variety of bikes at different price points that you might find interesting. Feel free to check out our other reviews as well.

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