Santa Cruz Bicycles are all-in on the electric bike movement these days, and their latest creation comes in the form of the new Skitch - an electrified version of the Stigmata, the brand's popular gravel bike. It was only a matter of time before the Skitch came to fruition and is an obvious next step for the brand, as they produce electrified versions of their most popular bikes.
Why an E-Stig?
E-road or e-gravel is becoming more and more popular, and with the rise of lightweight, high-efficiency motors, these bikes make more sense than ever. Gravel bikes take the best of road and mountain, combining them to make an ultra-capable, efficient, fun machines that are useful over a wide range of scenarios. Add a motor to that equation, and you only expand what the bike is capable of doing.
E-gravel bikes make incredibly versatile rides - there's a reason they've exploded in popularity. From smashing out massive gravel rides on the weekend, exploring the paths and trails in the neighbourhood to commuting and grocery-getting, there isn't much they're bad at. Throw a flat bar version into the mix and there's an mtb-lite capable of pretty much anything for just about everybody.
The Santa Cruz Skitch combines e-power with big tire clearance and aggressive geometry to make a bike that's light, fast and fun. Perfect for drop bar speed missions and urban assaults - keep the car parked, because you're going to want to grab the Skitch every time.
Motor and Battery
The new Skitch uses the Ride 60 drive system from Fazua - owned by Porsche, they know a thing or two about making things go fast. Pushing out 60Nm of torque from the tiny footprint and juiced by a 430Wh battery, the Skitch has an impressive range of 100km or more. Not only is the Ride 60 system light, but it has an impressively small footprint - the uninitiated would hardly guess that the Skitch houses a motor and battery at all.
Controlling things is a similarly svelte top tube mounted LED hub with built-in bluetooth interface, battery level and mode indicator and USB-C port for charging devices. On the handlebar is either the super slim ring control, making changing modes as easy as a flick of the thumb, or the Road Control, with a button by each hood, mounted stealthily under the bar tape. Coming for 2024 is also a bottle cage mounted range extender battery, details TBC.
Based around the Stigmata, it's no surprise that the Skitch shares some key frame details, including Santa Cruz's top-end CC carbon construction in sizes S-XXL, for strength and light weight. Built for speed and comfort, the Skitch has clearance for 700x50mm tires, and shares the same fork at the Stigmata. While there is no suspension spec for the Skitch currently, it is suspension-corrected so it could run a gravel suspension fork like the Rockshox Rudy. Keeping things utilitarian, the Skitch also features hidden fender mounts, much like the Stig, making it a true all-weather machine.
Coming back to that Fazua motor, the combination of carbon frame and svelte drive system brings the Skitch weight in at 30lbs, making for a bike that handles fast and rides easy. The Ride 60 motor also has zero internal drag, meaning that should you choose to ride with zero assist, or if you happen to run out of juice, it's much like riding a regular bike, rather than a boat anchor.
Like any good gravel bike, the Skitch will hold two water bottles and uses a 27.2mm seatpost, meaning it can be used with the best bump absorbing carbon posts, and is also compatible with 27.2mm dropper posts like the OneUp V2, which the GX AXS flat bar build comes specced with.
Geometry is almost identical to that of the Stigmata 4, with a slightly slacker head tube angle at 69º for better stability at speed, but sharing the same 74º seat tube angle, reach of 668mm and BB drop of 76mm in a size large, the only other difference being a 7mm longer chainstay at 430mm.
Build and Spec
Available in six sizes from tiny to huge, the Skitch comes in four spec levels - two drop bar and two flat bar. All have the same frame, drive system, a 1x12 wide-range 'mullet' drivetrain from Sram and Schwalbe G-One Overland Evo 700x45c ADDIX tires.
The entry point is the Apex flat-bar build with a Sram Apex Eagle drivetrain with 10-50t cassette, NX Eagle shifter, S-300 brakes, DT Swiss 370 hubs laced to WTB EZR i23p rims and Race Face Ride bars, stem and seatpost. The Apex drop-bar build comes with the same Apex Eagle groupset and wheels, but with Apex brakes, and Zipp Service Course XPLR 70 bars, stem, and seatpost.
The GX AXS flat-bar build comes with Sram's T-Type Transmission wireless electronic drivetrain running a 10-52 cassette and the flat bar pod shifter, DT 370 hubs on Easton ARC Offset 25 rims, Level Silver Stealth brakes with Paceline rotors, Sram Atmos flat bar and stem and a OneUp V2 dropper post and remote. The GX AXS Drop Bar build comes with the same spec but swaps shifters and brakes for Sram Rival AXS, bars and stem for Zipp Service Course 70 XPLR and Easton EC70 seatpost.
As always, feel free to contact us if you're not sure which bike is right for you or to enquire about stock and availability.