Do you believe in love at first sight? Surely this must be the genesis of the model name for this bike because the Norco Sight C2 is about as close to perfect as a trail bike can get. We pushed it hard trying to find its limit, but with every steep rock roll, every beyond-category climb and every ludicrous drop, this bike felt like it belonged. One of our riders noted at the end of his test that this was a bike he felt like he'd been riding for 15 years. The ability to hop on and ride comfortably and with confidence was evident right away.
Norco sent us two versions of this bike: the unisex model and the women's-specific model. The only difference between the two is a coat of paint, a women's-specific saddle, thinner grips and limited size options. Norco offers multiple wheel sizes within the Sight line. The women's model is offered in sizes XS through Medium, only with 27.5-inch wheels. The unisex offers 27.5-inch only for XS and Small, then 27.5-inch or 29-inch for Medium and Large. Extra Large is only available as a 29er. All Sight C2 bikes run the same Pike RCT3 fork, RockShox Deluxe Debonair RT shock, SRAM GX Eagle and Guide RS brakes. Our only complaint about the spec is the wide 800-millimeter Race Face Turbine bar on smaller sizes.
While the build is nice, the ride is even better. With 150 millimeters of front suspension and 140 in the rear, we were worried that it might be sluggish up steeper pitches, but the Sight was sprightly. With a 66.5-degree headtube angle, 74.5-degree seat-tube angle (on the Medium) and a supportive suspension feel, the get-up-and-go factor is real. In spite of more trail-like geometry, the bike felt at home on steeper descents too. It was surprisingly plush and had us pointing the bike down techier lines, never leaving us disappointed. The ride was reminiscent of the Yeti SB5 LR, in its ability to climb exceedingly well on both fire roads and quick steep pitches, while descending as if it had significantly more travel. Collectively we were deeply impressed with the Sight's ability to handle varying terrain at speed and its ability to skip across everything with total precision. This bike makes you feel like you never want the ride to end.
Our test model came in at $5,150. There are five available models of the carbon Sight, including two women's models, ranging in price from $4,200 to $7,200. Six aluminum versions are also offered, with the entry-level model priced at $2,800.
Q&A with Sarah Moore, marketing and communications supervisor at Norco Bicycles
The Sight C2 27.5 was a favorite among our testers this year. What are you doing to keep the momentum going for the next version?
Unless I’m reading the website wrong the unisex Sight lineup can run 29-inch wheels in sizes M-XL, but I don’t see any mention of that for the women’s specific lineup in a Medium. Is that an option?
For 2018, through our focus groups, we made the decision to offer the women's Sight in 650b only. Of course, women can still change out the touchpoints on the mainline model and ride that if they want a 29er. The women's line is continuing to evolve, so I'm not saying you won't see a women's Sight 29er in coming years.
Norco makes a ton of bikes targeted to women. Are they all essentially similar to the Sight in that they’re the same as the unisex bikes with slightly different touchpoints and paint schemes, or are some designed specifically for women?
All of Norco's bikes are designed to fit people. We have Gravity Tune to optimize geometry and rider weight distribution, Size-Scaled tubing so that lighter riders on smaller bikes will experience the same ride characteristics as a heavier rider on a larger frame, extra-small sizes in both aluminum and carbon, and super low standover height on all our models. Our research showed us that women do not require different geometry to men and so instead we focused on the touchpoints. We want to remove any barriers to entry for women, and so it's important to us that women are inspired by the bikes we have made specifically for them, resonate with the imagery they see and that they are able to pick a bike right off the shop floor with women's touchpoints. We want women to know that they have a place within mountain biking, a typically male-dominated sport as we all know, and ultimately get more women on bikes!