Santa Cruz Chameleon
BikeRide finds and shows you the best prices of the bikes you want to buy. Prices constantly change and it’s impossible to compare them all yourself.
We search for prices on over 120 bike retailers to guarantee that we find the lowest prices – to save you time and money.
It’s a promise we stand behind: If you find a lower price on a bike elsewhere, we will sell it to you for 10% less. For example, if you find a bike for $480 that we have listed at $500, we will offer you to buy it for $432 through BikeRide. The bike must be the same color and size, sold in the US and not include the use of a coupon.
If you find a lower price, email us at email@example.com with documentation of the price. We’re committed to making sure that the cost of a bike does not keep you from cycling!
Summary of Reviews
We have read all expert and user reviews on Santa Cruz Chameleon. In summary, this is what cyclists think.
11 reasons to buy
- The Chameleon demonstrates agile, reptilian handling capabilities.
- For some lower-end models, experts saw value-for-money as ‘solid’.
- Generally, climbing ability impressed. One expert deemed it ‘stellar’.
- The bike can be run geared, singlespeed and with two chainstay lengths.
- It can also be shod with 27.5” tires (up to 2.6”) or 29” (up to 2.6”).
- Reportedly, this steed performs savagely on descents.
- Testers found the Chameleon to be at home at high speeds.
- SRAM Level T brakes offered adequate stopping power.
- Bikepackers were satisfied with cargo-carrier mounts under the down-tube.
- Weight on carbon versions was described as ‘fairly light’.
- On higher-end models, Race Face Aeffect dropper-posts were lauded.
10 reasons not to buy
- It was common to hear that higher-end models seemed massively overpriced.
- For some, steep geometry felt less confident in rapid descents.
- The short rear-end felt jarring on rocky terrain.
- An expert loathed the less-aggressive, XC-focused Maxxis Ardent rear tire.
- On lower-end models, the lack of a dropper-post was a detractor.
- The Fox 34 shock underwhelmed, as a difficult-to-tune base-model.
- SRAM Guide brakes lacked power and needed bleeding early on.
- Some riders would have liked clearance for a 29” x 2.6” tire, or larger.
- One tester found climbing difficult on an R1, due to a ‘wandering front end’.
- The Chameleon lacks a downtube bottle-mount.
Expert Reviews81/100 based on 6 expert reviews
Santa Cruz Chameleon R+ Review
As far as hardtails go I think this is, hands-down, my favorite I’ve ever ridden… Fun-factor: 11/10.
Santa Cruz Chameleon 7 R1 29 Review
…an addictively engaging, hyper-versatile all rounder that refuses to play by category and geometry fashion rules.
Santa Cruz Chameleon R Aluminum 29 Review
I enjoy the efficiency on climbing and the visceral way it connects you to the trail.
Santa Cruz Chameleon R1+ 2019 Review
Downhill capabilities are great, climbing is solid and the fun-factor is sky-high.
Santa Cruz Chameleon 29 R Review
…this bicycle is supremely fun and is a great choice for the rider who wants a hardtail to slap corners and play around.