Planet X expands its cyclocross range with XLA alloy bike

New aluminium bike comes in Shimano Tiagra and SRAM Apex 1 builds

Planet X has been selling its XLS carbon cyclocross bike for a few years now and it’s recently been joined by an alloy machine with carbon bladed forks.

Buy now: Planet X XLA Aluminium Cyclocross Bike from £899.99 (opens in new tab)

The alloy frame comes with standard quick release wheels and Planet X says it has excellent clearance and a confident, nimble ride with a slack head tube angle and longer wheelbase offset by quite short chainstays. For all-round use and commuting duties, it also comes with mudguard mounts.

Disc brake wheels ride on standard quick release hubs

Rear derailleur and brake cable routing follow the classic cyclocross route, externally with a fully enclosed run across the top of the top tube to keep them clear of muddy courses and out of the way when shouldering the bike over obstacles.

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Cables are kept out of the mud

The XLA is available in two builds. Coming in at £799.99, the Tiagra build has a 50/34 compact chainset coupled to a 10-speed 11-32 cassette, providing plenty of range.

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Brakes are Avid BB7 mechanical discs and there are Gipiemme Roccia Equipe wheels shod with 34mm Hutchinson Black Mamba tyres. Planet X specs a Prologo Kappa 3 saddle.

Watch: Guide to cyclocross bikes

Pay an extra £100 and the £899.99 SRAM Apex 1 build comes with hydralic disc brakes and SRAM’s single ring groupset. This gives you a 42 tooth chainset coupled to an 11-speed 11-42 cassette for huge range without the mud clogging potential of a front derailleur.

>>> SRAM Force 1 review - one year on

Check mudguard clearance when choosing wider road bike tyres

Good clearance and mudguard mounts mark the XLA out for all-round use

Planet X now has quite a range of cyclocross bikes (opens in new tab) on offer. Alongside the XLA, it still sells its carbon XLS machine in a range of builds including a build-it-yourself complete kit. There’s also the titanium Typhoon with Force or Ultegra or as a frameset, the titanium Pickenflick and the Viner Super Prestige, both with SRAM 1 or 2 ring groupsets.

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Paul Norman

Paul started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2015, covering cycling tech, new bikes and product testing. Since then, he’s reviewed hundreds of bikes and thousands of other pieces of cycling equipment for the magazine and the Cycling Weekly website.

He’s been cycling for a lot longer than that though and his travels by bike have taken him all around Europe and to California. He’s been riding gravel since before gravel bikes existed too, riding a cyclocross bike through the Chilterns and along the South Downs.